A transgender person has drawn attention after he criticised a nurse that not all people who give birth are mothers and said that he would like medical workers to remember that. Los Angeles-based Bennett Kaspar-Williams, (37), gave birth to his baby boy with husband Malik via caesarean in October 2020.
While in hospital, waiting to have baby, Hudson, Kaspar-Williams said he was constantly misgendered by hospital staff who kept referring to him as a "mum".
The new dad, who started transitioning in 2014, has spoken candidly about his journey into fatherhood and the misconceptions people have about those who give birth.
"No one can ever really know whether having children is possible until you try — being born with a uterus doesn't make conceiving or carrying a certainty," he was quoted by the New York Post.
"That's why it's so important that we stop defining 'womanhood' in terms of 'motherhood', because it's a false equivalency that all women can become mothers, that all mothers carry their children, or that all people who carry children are mothers," he added.
Bennett Kaspar-Williams (left) said medical professionals constantly called him "ma'am" during his pregnancy
The new dad said that his transition journey has included surgery on his top half, and it was a "really liberating" moment to remove his breasts.
Despite the challenges that come along with transitioning, he said becoming pregnant never made him question his gender identity. The only issue he has encountered so far has been the way medical professionals have misgendered him.
"The only thing that made me dysphoric about my pregnancy was the misgendering that happened to me when I was getting medical care for my pregnancy," he said.
"The business of pregnancy — and yes, I say business, because the entire institution of pregnancy care in America is centred around selling this concept of 'motherhood' — is so intertwined with a gender that it was hard to escape being misgendered," he added.
Kaspar-Williams has "male" as the gender marker on all his documents but despite that, and his full beard, "people could not help but default to calling me 'mum', 'mother' or 'ma'am'," he added.
He could not be prouder of his parenthood journey and baby Hudson, who is now just over one-year-old.
"Nothing feels stronger than being able to say I'm a dad who created my own child," he said.
"To my son, there's nothing more natural and normal than having a Dada and a Papa," he said. "And when he's old enough, he will also come to know that his Dada was the one who carried him and took care of him so he could come into this world."