Noella is biologically a boy but was socially transitioned as a girl by biological mother Dee McMaher at just four years old. The child’s name and gender were subsequently legally changed, and the child will reportedly undergo surgical transition by age 16.
“The fact that she has this want to be an activist and be visible for other trans kids, we know is just so important in a world that especially right now in our current political climate, that has so many things that are working against her – kids like her,” McMaher, standing with her spouse, gushed this week over Noella, according to Reuters.
“It’s cool to have that title,” Noella said of being dubbed the youngest transgender model. “It shows that I actually am like showing other – showing other people and kids that being transgender isn’t bad.”
“We were just born in the wrong body, pretty much,” the child said. “And we found – and then we just switched our genders.”
McMaher told Forbes in February that she and her partner Ray McMaher both identify as transgender. Noella’s brother is the only person in the family who is so-called cis-gender, or identifies with his biological sex.
“My spouse and I are also transgender,” McMaher said. “Noella transitioned way before we did. She is the most self-assured person I know. I tell her all the time I want to be like her when I grow up.”
“My son sat us down and told us he is a boy and is staying a boy,” the mother continued.
McMaher, reportedly a social justice advocate, has boasted about Noella’s career and activism in the past.
“We are so proud of Noella for being the first trans child in New York Fashion Week. We are in awe with her confidence and determination,” the parent said. “Noella already has so many transgender people of all ages contact her for advice, support.”
“I don’t think she ever has nerves,” McMaher continued. “She loves everything from beginning to end about walking in runway shows. The very first thing she did when she packed was make sure she had her eyelashes that were made for her. She said she is never worried about tripping because when she gets onto the runway, she feels the most confident in herself. As soon as it was over, she said, ‘I am ready to do this again!’”
The child has an Instagram account with more than 22,000 followers and an Instagram Link Tree where donations are solicited to support Noella’s “dreams.”
— Reuters Asia (@ReutersAsia) September 14, 2022