Feroza Syed is exactly the type of person you’d want to become a foster parent: She has years of experience caring for her six nieces and nephews, and her family welcomes the prospect of more children. She and her husband of 10 years, Stephen Croft, are more than financially stable—thanks in part to her career as a successful realtor. So it shocks her to know that some Georgia lawmakers think adoption and foster care agencies should be allowed to discriminate against her because she is a transgender woman, meaning she was born male but knew from a young age that she is female, and so she transitioned and now lives as the woman she has long known herself to be.
When Feroza first started telling her story publicly, she worried she would lose her business and her friends, like she had lost many members of her extended family when she came out to them as a teenager. The actual response has been the complete opposite, with ample support from her community members. “Having come from my background, I didn’t think this is how it would happen. I thought I would lose a lot. Instead I gained so much.”