The Other McCain

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Munchausen Mom Wendy Napoles and the ‘Princess by Proxy’ Syndrome

Posted on | July 7, 2019 | 2 Comments

Wendy Napoles (left) and her drag-queen son Desmond.

Last December, after it was reported that 11-year-old Desmond Napoles had performed in drag at a Brooklyn gay bar where adult men threw money at the child, I referenced the “emerging awareness” by which the Supreme Court had justified its ruling in Lawrence v. Texas (2003). If it is true, as the court majority implied, that homosexuality enjoys a quasi-sacred “civil rights” status protected by the Fourteenth Amendment, we must expect certain consequences, and while no one in 2003 predicted American bacha bazi, certainly in hindsight this seems a plausible result of Justice Kennedy’s “emerging awareness” doctrine.

This is unspeakably wicked, especially since Desmond’s mother Wendy has so enthusiastically encouraged her son’s perverse effeminacy. Like other mothers who have deliberately feminized their boys, Wendy Napoles seems to be engaged in a form of Munchausen’s Syndrome by Proxy, whereby parents (or other caretakers) seek attention for themselves by inducing medical problems in their children or others in their care. By pretending to rescue the victim from a fictitious disease, the parent (typically a mother) gains sympathy for herself. In the case of children like Jazz Jennings, whose mothers insist that their sons manifested “female” traits as mere toddlers, it seems as if raising their children to be transgender is a way for bored middle-class women to win the competition for having the Most Special Snowflake Child™ in school. Pay close attention to these stories, and you’ll notice certain patterns. The mother is the dominant influence, and the father is merely a background figure in the narrative — a passenger, as it were, in a family journey with his wife driving the vehicle. These mothers seem inordinately proud of their feminized sons, and eager to congratulate themselves on being excellent parents. So understanding! So progressive! So courageous!


Once you know what to look for, it’s easy to point out evidence that the mothers of such children are mentally ill:

The mother of Child Drag Queen Desmond Napoles is appalled that a convicted pedophile finds her son sexy and sexualized his performances.
Tom O’Carroll, convicted in the UK in 2006 for distributing child pornography, and former chairman of the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE) referred to Desmond in a blog post written last month as a “pretty young boy” and “sexy kid.”
“We do not approve of his statements & have written to wordpressdotcom several times but they have yet to remove it. It is highly inappropriate to speak of minors in this manner, said Wendy Napoles in a statement on Instagram. “What Tom O’Carroll has said is out of our control & we do not know him or associate with him or any other pedophiles or sex offenders.”
She then went on to criticize conservative media saying, “The Conservative press is currently accusing us of purposely attracting pedophiles & accusing the LGBTQ community of supporting this.”

How is a pedophile’s reaction to a pre-teen drag queen the fault of conservatives? This is some bizarre projection on the part of Wendy Napoles, whose attack on conservatives is obviously a tactic intended to rally support among her “progressive” allies and “the LGBTQ community,” even though some members of that community are appalled by the way she promotes her feminized son as a kind of bizarre trophy. As for Tom O’Carroll’s reaction, is it really any surprise that a notorious pedophile would be an enthusiastic fan of a child being celebrated as a public symbol of prepubescent homosexual identity?

Whatever else you may think of Desmond Napoles, it is obvious that his mother has always acted as the cheering audience for his performances and is now playing the role of stage mother, basking in the reflected “glory” (such as it is) of her son’s status as LGBT celebrity.

In January, after Desmond’s appearances on nation TV (and his much-criticized performance in a gay bar) had drawn public scrutiny, author Karen Kataline called Child Protective Services to report the Napoles family, and wrote a column explaining why:

During the height of “Toddlers and Tiaras” and the Jon Benet Ramsey story, I wrote a book about my own experience in child beauty pageants, and growing up as a “Princess by Proxy,” a term coined by Dr. Martina Cartwright in the foreword to the book.
I was put on the stage at the age of 3, but I didn’t understand my true feelings about that or how similar experiences affected my development until I was well into my 30s. By then, I had clinical experience as well, so I used my story of a “stage mother on steroids” who lived through me as a case study to offer my professional analysis of how the early sexualization of children damages their development. I hoped the book would be a cautionary tale as I saw a growing social trend with disturbingly similar pathology. . . .
The problem that screams out for education and intervention is bigger than the case of Desmond Napoles. Suddenly, we have numerous “drag kids”, including a 10-year-old boy from Canada who was photographed with a naked adult drag queen. There is a nationwide program called “Drag Queen Story Hour,” which sends adult drag queens to read stories to children ages 2 to 8 at public libraries around the country. To think all these stories aren’t related would be childishly naive.
We are being told to believe that children as young as 4 can “identify” as gay. Desmond’s parents claim that they recognized their son was gay at the age of 2. In fact, Desmond’s father admonishes himself for not knowing this five minutes after he was born. “He’s sitting there with a little smile on his face, posing for the camera… We should have known right then, but we didn’t,” he said.
When a parent lives through a child to that extent, the child in effect ceases to exist. The parent is unable to set proper boundaries to protect the child, because he can’t see any boundaries at all. It may appear that the parent is deeply involved and concerned about the child but in actuality, this is a form of neglect.
Some parents who believe they have recognized their child’s gender identity have even given them “cross gender hormones” to distort or retard their natural sexual development.
Advocates for these extreme measures have also pushed the idea of “gender fluidity.” If gender is so fluid, why are parents changing it or locking it in for young children with irreversible procedures? Is gender fluidity only for adults, and not for children? The term itself seeks to normalize gender dysphoria but if gender is fluid at all, one would think it would be in childhood when the psyche is most impressionable. The flurry of drag queen stories are targeted at those children. . . .

You can read the rest. Indeed, this disturbing phenomenon very much resembles the Toddlers & Tiaras trend that most adults found horrifying. Or for that matter, Dance Moms, with that awful Abby Lee Miller bullying girls to the point of tears. Making children a mere instrument of parental ambition should always bother us. Parents want their children to grow up to be happy and successful, and different parents have different ideas of what constitutes happiness and success, but turning your son into a juvenile celebrity drag queen? No, that’s crazy. It’s sick.

What causes the “stage mother” problem in child beauty pageants? Martina Cartwright examined the phenomenon:

The answer lies in a condition known as “Achievement by Proxy Distortion.” (ABPD). Benign ABP occurs when the adult’s pride and satisfaction are achieved when supporting the child’s development and abilities. In benign ABP, coaches, parents and other involved adults actively cheer on the child and provide emotional support and reasonable financial assistance. The parents are aware of the child’s limitations and would allow the child to stop the activity if the child became disinterested, injured or exploited.
The pathogenic form of ABPD is a phenomenon by which the social and/or financial gains of the child’s achievements become the adults’ primary goals. ABPD is often associated with child athletes, however, I believe some pageant parents exhibit a unique form of ABPD I call “Princess by Proxy.” (PBP).

Just as with Desmond’s mother, who insists that this whole drag-queen thing is his own idea, so also do mothers of child beauty pageant contestants claim that it’s their daughters, and not themselves, whose ambitions are on display. The parent is so emotionally invested in the child’s performance that they are unable to distinguish between their own needs and those of the child, so that a sort of psychological projection occurs, where the parent ascribes to the child emotions that the parent feels: “She loves it!” And if a girl is told from the time she is 3 how much she “loves” beauty pageants, she is likely to internalize her mother’s enthusiasm. It’s like children raised by Scientologists, who never think to question the lunatic teachings of L. Ron Hubbard.

Of course, New York’s Child Protective Services agency did not intervene in the case of Desmond Napoles. How could they? In a state where the “gay rights” agenda is considered sacred, no one can prevent parents from deliberately encouraging their children to be homosexual. Indeed, parents in New York would be more likely to be investigated if they tried to discourage their children from being gay. This, you see, is all a predictable consequence of the Lawrence v. Texas decision and its core doctrine of “emerging awareness.” Once it was decided that sodomy was a constitutionally protected right, it was only a matter of time before this was extended into childhood, and no one is permitted to object.