Family Ties

R. Kelly’s First Interview About His Transgender Son Is Not Encouraging

A few weeks ago, R&B superstar R. Kelly’s 13-year-old child Jay came out as trans, and the singer has been relatively silent about it…until now.

Black entertainment gossip blog Bossip got a hold of a video interview with Kelly after a recent performance.

While we wouldn’t necessarily call his response transphobic, we’d definitely wager that there is a lot of work to be done in the journey to accepting his son. His response could could have been a lot worse than the rambling dismissal of his son’s gender identity followed by his affirmation of unconditional love for all of his children, but it could certainly have been more positive, as well. Let’s hope that he will evolve as much as Cher has. Or these incredible parents.

Check out the conversation at the 3:40 mark, and be happy that Jay has at least one awesomely supportive parent.

He can be found on instagram @mi_ylno_namuh.

Follow another parent’s stories of raising a gender non-conforming child on Queerty’s series: Raising my Rainbow.





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  • Curtispsf

    Oh lord, I thought the guy interviewing Kelly was going to ask if he could go home with Kelly and clean his holiness’ toilets. As for the rest of the interview, all I can say is two words: “role models”. I’ll leave it to you to figure out whatever meaning it may have for you.

  • gskorich

    lets not forget that Cher was not too happy about chaz and his transformation. we can sit back and condemn r Kelly but why? it’s his child. not everyone has to accept everything.

  • hex0

    I wonder whether his daughter would decide she’s a male if it weren’t for the internet transgender fad going on these days. Plus she has a rich daddy so can afford to experiment being a “boy” like Stephen Ira et al…

  • adventuretime

    @hex0: now why, oh why would you choose to use a purposefully incendiary phrase like “internet fad” when referring to trans men and women? when words like “fad” and “phase” were incorrectly and stupidly used all too recently (in fact, still are) against gay people? and she can’t help that she was born wealthy–and clearly takes efforts to distance herself from her father.

    why the hate/ignorance is so strong in you, i dunno…

  • Vero55

    There isn’t even a hint or a whiff of a story here. Not at all…he didn’t say anything. And regardless of who he is and what he has done in his life (let’s face it, the tone of the article implies that all us queers are nodding in agreement because, of course, this sexually predatory black man is uncomfortable with his child’s transition) people have the right to privacy in a situation like this and are allowed to feel however the hell they want about it. Is the kid all over the Internet looking for attention?

  • inbama

    Gay children also go through gender dysphoria and will no doubt be swept into transgenderism by incompetent therapists armed with Big Pharma’s puberty blockers.

  • Jacob23

    Why does Rob Smith keep pushing stories about transsexuals? Does he think that being gay makes one a transsexual? I wonder. One thing is for sure though: Rob Smith has a problem with gay people and gay identity.

    Hopefully, Rob Smith will evolve and embrace gay people on their own terms.

  • corvaspikenard

    @inbama: That’s a nice tinfoil hat you have there.

  • inbama

    Darlin’, don’t think you can lecture me about science when you tell people your brain was in the wrong head.

  • corvaspikenard

    @inbama: If you have more impressive credentials than the American Medical and Psychological Associations, then present them. Otherwise the science is on my side.

  • Tackle

    @Vero55: There definitely was. When R. Kelly says something to the affect of, ” regardless of who your children are.” And later he says. ,” the choices they choose in life”. And he goes on to say, ” there is more to the story, and don’t believe what you hear in the media. See for you self”. It was all related around his children. And only ONE has been in the news.

  • Tackle

    @Jacob23: Because MANY trans people are gay, lesbian and bisexual. And because there are MANY gay men like myself who love hearing stories about what are trans brothers and sisters are doing. The question would be is to why do you even bother to click on stories about trans people??
    If you don’t like it, just ignore it. Good call Rob Smith. Keep em coming.

  • Lvng1tor

    and I care what this nasty hebephile why? He should be in jail.

  • Mezaien

    Isn`t R. Kelly’s HOMO? what was I thinking.

  • morgan riggs

    The nice thing about puberty blockers is that their effect is 100% reversible. If the child ages into being a femme gay boy rather than wanting to be a girl, or a butchy lesbian girl rather than a boy, they have that opportunity. The hormone blockers are stopped, and the body’s usual hormones take over, no harm no foul. Hormone blockers are a great tool for parents and children, puberty is frozen to allow the child extra time to make a life altering decision. And in using hormone blockers, the child isnt physically marked by one sex or another. No Adam’s apple, no breast formation, which in the end will help mold a more authentic body they wish without so much surgery.

    Without a doubt however the greatest thing about hormone blockers is that they help the child live in a body that isnt changing into something they hate day by day. Think of how many trans children would be alive today if they would have been accepted and offered the chance to freeze puberty in its tracks. There is nothing worse than to be on the puberty train to a body they have no attachment to.

    I was horrified at the unwanted changes puberty brought to my body, torn psychically between what I knew to be true as to who I actually was, a boy, and what my body was doing.

    And as to what trans stories are doing on Queerty? I am a gay man. Trans folk come in many different sexual orientations. Besides, isnt a great deal of the hate directed at gay men historically is that they are seen as effeminate, or not a “real” man? While thankfully most people match their inner gender to their outer body, their is a perceived notion of gays and lesbians and to a lesser extent bi’s that they are outside of the gender “norm”.

  • His Hot Brother

    Not much of a story. He totally ignored the issue.

  • tricky ricky

    R. Kelly had sex with an underage girl and peed on her. that says about all anyone needs to know about Mr. Kelly.

  • porcupinelmf

    I don’t see why R. Kelly is not fully supporting this idea. If his son becomes a girl, then that means he can pee all over “her” whenever he wants.

    Unless, this is just an act pretending he is against it, so when the time comes. He can deny everything. Smart move Kelly, smart move.

  • Gamma-Aminobutyric-Acid

    I experienced Gender Dysphoria (transgenderism) for twenty-three years (from age 5 until age 28) and was diagnosed as a “classic case” pre-op Transexual in my early twenties. While I was planning hormones and surgery, I began to feel something was very wrong with the methods of treatment being proposed by my doctors (see Harry Benjamin standards of care – based off crude research in the 1960’s). Whereas Gender Dysphoria was once considered a psychological illness, it has since been re-classified as a psychiatric “condition” so that insurance companies do not have to pay for surgery! Now, it is the mad doctors who makeall the $$$). So I began independent research on my own. Along the way, I began to ponder… I thought that if people have a “soul”, the soul would not have a gender until it is inside a body. I decided that the “soul” is not capable of thought without a body. It is simply energy, “the Force”, etc. Therefore, the soul would NOT be what motivates a person to decide they are in the wrong body. What motivates Trans people to think this way when they are young? In a “classic case” diagnosis, it is usually from being sexually molested at an early age, along with abandonment by either the mother or father (in my case, father. I was born male). There are other causes and reasons for Gender Dysphoria, but this scenario is the most common according to the bulk of behavioral research available in the stacks at a good University library (or your local LGBTA community center). As I continued my research, I began to sense that the answer to my problem was not external. Taking hormones and changing my genitalia would NOT make me a woman, even if I felt I was a woman inside. I would only be a man who looked and acted female. So instead of applying a bandage over my psychic wounds, and instead of satiating these deep emotions, I began reading about (and practicing) Transcendental Meditation as described in Buddhist/Hindu literature. TM put me on the path to “Self Realization”. And when I discovered my “True Self”, I realized that who I really am has NOTHING to do with gender. I discovered that the solution could be solved INTERNALLY, simply by reinforcing the positive thoughts I had about being a father, about having a family one day, about anything that would reinforce my a positive acceptance of myself as a Man. I had to adjust my external look a bit to discourage myself from having desperate thoughts of being female, found male clothing I liked, and stopped painting my nails and cross-dressing. It was hard at first, but the more I went out into the forest and meditated on my own “Nature”, the more I realized that there really was no difference between the energy inside my body and the energy inside a tree: Soul is One, not divided into genders. After 23 years of Gender Dysphoria and nearly starting down the road to hormones and surgery, I beat all the odds, accepted the body I was born with, and slowly learned how to be a Man over the next several years without a father to show me. I self-healed, and today, I am a regular guy. In the 1990’s, the statistics were that fifty percent of people diagnosed with Gender Dysphoria would seek hormones and surgery, and the other fifty percent would eventually commit suicide! I chose neither, so I guess that makes me an enigma. More than that, it means that I found THE CURE for Gender Dysphoria. So if you or someone you know is pre-op Trans or been diagnosed with Gender Dysphoria, tell them they have another choice: to find their “true self” through transcendental meditation and the great wisdom found in Buddhism and eastern philosophy. It’s a longer, more difficult path than what the mainstream medical establishment is offering. But think of it this way: It took time and circumstance to shape your belief that you are trapped in the wrong body. Now, it will take time and effort on your part to change your own belief system, to re-pattern your thoughts, and learn to love the body you were born with (even though the body is not your “true self”). If you have read this far and agree with my perspective on G.D. and proposed alternative treatment solution, please educate others before they make a decision they might later regret. ADDENDUM: People, by and large, do not understand how Gender Dysphoria begins, but I offer the following explanation so that people can easily explain to the lay person, opening the dialogue so that it is no longer a condition to be feared or reacted to with disgust. Gender Dysphoria begins in a child much like the psychology of the “imaginary childhood friend”, where the child acts out as a coping mechanism to trauma. The difference between G.D. and “imaginary friend” is that the “imaginary friend” is not external, it is internal and of the opposite gender. A four or five year old child will have Gender Dysphoric thoughts and/or role play as the opposite sex as a coping mechanism to deal with trauma (often sexual) and abandonment experienced when parents divorce. That’s it, plain and simple. I am basing this explanation off the most common causal model of G.D., so this explanation will not apply to everyone. But if you understand the basic psychology, it shouldn’t be too hard to help the average person understand how G.D. starts. Once people begin seeing how simple it is for a child to become Gender Dysphoric, and once people begin to see that the condition begins in early childhood, they start to see that it is not a “perverted” adult mental state, but a conditioned response to trauma from childhood when we were innocent. CONCLUSION: Self Realization through transcendental meditation worked for me, and it can work for you too. T.M. is a vehicle that can remove you or someone you love from a world of psychological pain and suffering that might only get worse by following the treatment plans of the mainstream medical establishment. I hope that by posting this, it will help people and save lives. Please copy and share this comment with as many others on relevant Trans related threads! Thank you and best wishes.

  • Shiru

    @Gamma-Aminobutyric-Acid: Hi, sorry to tell you but everything you said is bullshit. There is NO EVIDENCE supporting sexual abuse as a cause for being transgender; there is however a great deal of evidence that suggests it’s related to brain structure and hormone balance, as seen here:

    In which case, it’s not something that can be solved simply by wishing it to be gone, it requires physical treatment as it is a physical condition. You do not have more authority or expertise than the American psychological association, and the reason hwy they endorse Hormone Replacement therapy is because it works. Because it makes the body feel the way the brain is telling it that it should feel.

    As a side not, there are many transwomen who went through exactly what you did, a phase wherein they embraced all the positive aspects of masculinity… and I’m sorry to say but it’s denial, and in most cases ends in regret:

  • corvaspikenard

    @Gamma-Aminobutyric-Acid: Sorry; I wasn’t sexually abused and I grew up with a mother and a father. You’re wrong.

    I’m glad that you figured out you’re not transgender and you didn’t need to transition, kudos to you.
    I hope for your sake you’re not just fooling yourself that you can continue living as a male, because if the dysphoria comes back, it will hit you like a wrecking ball and you will hate yourself for waiting so long to transition and wasting so much of your life as a male.

    I could never be male. No offense to men, but the idea of being one of you makes my skin crawl. Men are the antithesis of everything I am.

    I’m curious; I wonder if you’re just ‘managing’ to be a male but still loathe many aspects of masculinity. I suspect that’s the case.
    Whereas I love my life as a woman – every moment of it is a gift and I bask in my womanhood. There is no way I would trade this for your ‘cure’. I am cured and I also don’t have to have a loathsome male body anymore :-)

  • inbama

    @morgan riggs:
    ‘If the child ages into being a femme gay boy rather than wanting to be a girl, or a butchy lesbian girl rather than a boy, they have that opportunity. The hormone blockers are stopped, and the body’s usual hormones take over, no harm no foul..”

    Lovely how trans activists and their quack therapists are making all the decisions for gay children with gender issues. This is why gay men and lesbians must fight you.

    “Childhood gender identity variance is a pre-homosexual phase in about 80% of cases.” – Simon Pickstone Taylor, Member of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health,

    Block puberty, and you block self-knowledge.

  • Jacob23

    A few commenters have tried to justify Rob Smith’s pushing transsexual stories on the grounds that some gay people may be trans. It is certainly true that some gay people may be trans. But gay people also: play poker, are retired, drive SUVs, and eat out at restaurants. It doesn’t follow that Queerty should be posting stories about all those topics unless they in some way have a gay angle. There is no gay person or gay angle in this R Kelly story and it has no place here.

  • corvaspikenard

    @inbama: Yes of course; gays are more important than trans people. We should suffer the wrong puberty just to make a few gays happy. Sorry for forgetting our place. We’ll just go back to killing ourselves like we always have.

  • hex0


    And you want gay gender nonconforming children pathologized as transgender? Cause that’s what you are arguing. Instead of having an effeminate boy, Mr and Mrs Evans can now have a beautiful girl…

  • Tackle

    @Gamma-Aminobutyric-Acid: Even though I do not agree with you, I like your delivery. You were not judgmental, bitchy or condescending. In some respects, I see that your journey to enlightenment did work for you. In the event that you come back, do you have a website, facebook or email address?

  • inbama

    @corvaspikenard: At least you are finally admitting that you are willing to sacrifice the mental health of 80 percent of gender variant children for the 20.

    That’s about the first honest thing you and trans activists have ever said on the issue.

    BTW, that passive-agressive trans routine is getting really old –
    “Use language as I tell you or I’ll kill myself.”
    “Let ME define YOU or I’ll kill myself.”
    “Let gay children be sacrificed for Trans or I’ll kill myself.”

    Y’all really should be in therapy with COMPETENT psychiatrists.

    This is the controlling behavior of the “monster mother.” The only way her children can save themselves is to get as far away from her as possible.

  • noodles

    @inbama: I agree. I’m going to throw my two cents in and say that a lot of trans behavior basically comes off as selfish attention seeking. Why must we know everything about your sex preferences and care about terms you made up to describe and label yourselves? Do you want to hear about how I like to lick toes or my special word for “23 year old confused person has glasses doesn’t eat fish wants to sleep with only people who have 11 fingers”??? Il kill myself if you dont call me a climgar or talk about eating fish.

    I’m glad you hate males so much corvaspikenard! No offence to you of course but thinking about you basking in your womanhood makes MY skin crawl :) I like how you just flat out dismiss GAA’s comments because they dont relate to you. Maybe r kelly can pee on you :P

  • Nik

    Here’s the thing…and this is directed to every one with their little rage flags flying. It’s not up to you to police ANYONE’s sexual or gender identity. You all need to calm down and back up because you’re only filling yourself up with anger/hate over what? Someone else’s problems? They have their own issues to deal with and honestly don’t give a shit about what some stranger on the Internet thinks of them. Why do you care so deeply that not everyone is exactly like you? Trans people get ostracized from the world more than most people because straight people freak out about them and the LGB community snuffs at the T portion and just refers to them as “gays/lesbians who couldn’t hack it as a gay or lesbian person”
    It all goes back to people assuming it’s a choice. And I will bring up the argument that’s been brought up for years about homosexuality being a choice: If it were a CHOICE, why would anyone CHOOSE to be it?

  • corvaspikenard

    @noodles: “Why must we know everything about your sex preferences and care about terms you made up to describe and label yourselves?”

    I don’t want you to know anything about me. I just want to get on with my life as an ordinary heterosexual woman and be accorded the same rights and privileges as everyone else.
    That’s why I use the pseudonym ‘corvaspikenard’, because it’s very far removed from my real name. I don’t tell anyone I’m trans in real life; I’m just an ordinary wife in the suburbs, with my husband, a couple of cats and a nice library.
    My ‘word’ for myself is ‘woman’, but others keep insisting on labeling me as something else, or as a man or whatever.

    I don’t want to kill myself, but I’ve been there a few times. Both my parents committed suicide so it’s a constant background noise in my life. I’m OK most of the time when I ignore how much the world hates trans people, but when I see comment threads like this one and the Mr. Gay Philly one, I feel pretty rotten – as does anyone when confronted with that much hatred directed at you.

    Have you ever considered what it’s like to be trans? It’s certainly no cakewalk.
    And if a veteran like me feels terrible about the anti-trans sentiment in these threads, then imagine how a 13yr old kid will feel reading the crap people are spewing at trans folks.

    That you treat the staggering trans suicide rates so casually and crack jokes about it shocks me to the core. None of us want to be trans. We also don’t want the bile and hatred of the world poured onto our heads every time one of us tries to get a bit of positive visibility for our own kind.

    People like you are responsible for the damage done to trans youth by society. Why the fuck do you care so much about what some selfish kid is doing? Be an adult and leave them be. Let them reach out to their own kind and support them publicly – it’s not doing you any harm, is it?

    Have a little humanity and empathy for others for a change.

  • corvaspikenard

    @inbama: Yes, I am willing to let a few LGB kids go through psychological assessments to see if they are truly trans and fit for puberty blockers. None of them will make it; even adults don’t always make it through.
    This is about saving the lives of trans youth, but you don’t give a damn. Your sole concern is that a child might take puberty blockers for a couple of years and then stop and realise they don’t need them.

    I’m glad you revealed that you place the discomfort of gays over the lives of trans people.
    YOU are the monster, my friend.
    All we want is our correct bodies and to live in peace, but you have to interfere with the very basics of our existence.
    I don’t doubt that you secretly want all trans people ‘converted’ into gays or rounded up and put in camps.
    You are no different from the conservative right wing. You use all the same arguments and tactics as them.

    You are the same as them.

  • supermattachine

    @hex0: if this is an experiment, I must be awfully committed to it

Comments are closed.