Jade Gender Reassignment

Jazz Jennings, the Florida teenager who has become the unofficial face of America's transgender youth, will now star in her own reality TV series on TLC, focusing on her life with family, friends and school.

The 14-year-old, who was last year named one of TIME magazines 25 most-influential teenagers -alongside Taliban victim and Nobel Peace Prize-winner Malala Yousafzai - and has written a children's book about growing up transgender, will appear in an 11-episode series called All That Jazz.

'Jazz may be known as an author and activist, but she's first and foremost a teenage girl with a big, brave heart, living a remarkable life,' Nancy Daniels, the general manager of TLC, told People.

Now in the ninth grade, Jazz plans to undergo sex realignment surgery at 18, having been born male but lived as a female since she was five-years-old.

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Fledgling reality star: The Florida teen Jazz Jennings, who plans to undergo sex realignment surgery at 18, will appear in an 11-episode series on TLC called All That Jazz

Precious: Jazz, 14, recently told of her fears on joining the high school dating scene after admitting that some of her classmates won't speak to her while others refer to her as 'it'

Happy family: Jazz (left) with her twin older brothers, Sander and Griffin, both 16, and a sister Ari, 19 and her mom and dad 

Born a boy, Jazz told her parents that it felt like she'd been 'born in the wrong body' and was diagnosed with gender identity disorder at the age of three. Pictured left, aged five months, and, right, aged two

Support: Jazz (second right) with her loving family - who will appear alongside her on the new TLC reality television show

Marjorie Kaplan, group president of TLC & Animal Planet, added: 'Only TLC can tell this family's story in way that celebrates and demystifies difference in an effort to help create a world without prejudice.'

TLC have not released an air date for the show, which is believed to have already started filming. 

In a recent interview, Jazz discussed some of the perils of being in high school and being transgender, revealing that some people cruelly refer to her as 'it'.

Jazz said: 'I like some boys in my class at school but no one likes me back.

'It upsets me, I worry it's because I'm not pretty. But my friends tell me I'm attractive.

'My friends started chatting about boys they fancied but Mum warned me not to join in, in case I was teased.

'She thinks I need to wait until I'm older to start thinking about relationships. But I know one day I'll find someone who likes me for who I am.'

Now Miss Jennings is paying attention to boys, mum Jeanette Jennings, 48, is conscious for her safety.

She said: 'I do worry now she's getting older. I've told her if she ever goes on a date she needs to tell the boy beforehand. I'm worried someone could turn on her, maybe even attack her if they found out further down the line.

'I won't let Jazz go to other people's houses if the whole family isn't aware of the situation.'

Following her diagnosis, Jazz, pictured aged six, transitioned and started living as a girl full-time aged five

Jazz, pictured aged five in a ballet dress left, and as a boy, right, has spoken of the difficulties finding love

Miss Jennings, who has twin older brothers, Sander and Griffin, both 16, and a sister Ari, 19, has 'longed to be a girl' for as long as she can remember and has never referred to herself as a boy. Her mother is pictured second from left

Miss Jennings plans to have full gender reassignment surgery after she turns 18. She said: 'The hardest part of being transgender is still having male genitalia. It reminds me I wasn't born in a female body.

'When I grew my hair and started wearing girls' clothes, it felt right. I've been teased by some schoolmates, but I've learnt to rise above it.

Mum tells me that even as a two-year-old when she praised me for being a good boy, I'd correct her saying, 'I'm a good girl' 

'I already feel like a girl but when I have the gender reassignment surgery my transition will be complete.'

Although Jazz's mum and dad were worried about Jazz's behaviour at the start, since her diagnosis as a toddler, they have been unwavering in their support.

Mrs Jennings said: 'We're so proud of her. We listened to Jazz and let her be the person she wanted to be. 

'It was hard at first, but we saw how much happier she was living as a girl. Sometimes I mourn the loss of the idea of my son. But there's a wonderful person with us now and Jazz knows how special she is.'

Miss Jennings, who has twin older brothers, Sander and Griffin, both 16, and a sister Ari, 19, has 'longed to be a girl' from ever since she can remember and never referred to herself as a boy.

She said: 'Mum tells me that even as a two-year-old when she praised me for being a good boy, I'd correct her saying, 'I'm a good girl.

'As a toddler I wanted to wear girls' clothes and I'd play with Ari's dolls.

Jazz founded the TransKids Purple Rainbow Foundation which has led her to meet a host of celebrities including transgender actress Laverne Cox, left, and Hollywood starlet Jennifer Lawrence, right

'When I was two, Mum says I asked when the fairy was going to come with a magic wand and take away my penis.'

Mrs Jennings and her husband, Greg, 47, realised it was not a phase and went to a paediatrician for advice.

Miss Jennings said: 'The doctor showed me male and female dolls and asked me to point to which one I was. Straight away, I pointed to the female doll. I was the youngest patient the paediatrician had seen.'

They advised Mrs Jennings to follow her daughter's lead but not to encourage her.

But she was still adamant she was a girl and when she came in from nursery she would change into one of her sister's dresses or her favourite fairy outfit.

Aged three, Miss Jennings was diagnosed with gender identity disorder after tests and counselling.

Jazz, pictured aged 13, was prescribed hormone blockers when she was 11 to stop the production of testosterone, so she would not go through male puberty

Following her diagnosis, she gradually transitioned and started living as a girl full-time aged five.

She said: 'I grew my hair, had my ears pierced and wore dresses. I felt so happy.

'My brothers and sisters accepted it and even though my dad struggled at first, both my parents were really supportive.'

When Miss Jennings started approaching puberty, she was anxious about nature taking its course.

She said: 'I had nightmares about growing facial hair and I hated the thought of my voice dropping and my body becoming more masculine.'

Aged 11, she was prescribed hormone blockers to stop the production of testosterone, so she would not go through male puberty.

'It was such a relief,' she said. 'The hormone blockers are reversible, so if I come off them I'll go through male puberty. But there's no way that's happening - I'm too happy as a girl. I love experimenting with different hair styles and going clothes shopping.'

Jazz, pictured aged seven, revealed she knew she wanted to be a boy when she was aged just three

While her family were happy with her transition, there were pupils at her school who were less understanding.

Miss Jennings said: 'Some children asked why I was dressed like a girl when I was born a boy. I'd say I felt as though I'd been born in the wrong body.

'But at lunchtime some of the girls wouldn't sit with me and some of the boys even called me 'it'. When I got home I'd cry.

'I wasn't allowed to use the boys' or girls' toilets, I had to go to the nurse's office to use the bathroom. I felt so isolated.'

Although she does not get attention from boys at school, she gets messages from others across the globe.

She said: 'A lot of straight and transgender boys get in touch with me through my website and social media. 

Miss Jennings hopes to settle down with a family one day but currently she's using her experience to help others through the transition.

She has founded the TransKids Purple Rainbow Foundation and written a book I Am Jazz about being diagnosed with gender identity disorder.

An advocate of transgender rights, Jazz's campaigning work has led her to meet a host of stars including Laverne Cox, the transgender star of Orange is the new Black and Hollywood A-Lister Jennifer Lawrence.

Miss Jennings said of the meeting: 'I'm a huge Hunger Games fan so it was amazing to meet Jennifer, she couldn't have been nicer and said I was an inspiration.'

The youngster has also spoken at schools, hospitals and universities on the subject.

She said: 'I want to show people they don't have to be scared of being different. I hope to stop discrimination against young transgender people.'

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Jazz Jennings‘ lifelong dream of undergoing gender confirmation surgery may not be possible for the transgender teen.

The 17-year-old TLC star and LGBTQ rights activist has been mentally readying to undergo the surgery, but now she’s been informed that she must also physically prepare — but it might take longer than she expected.

In a PEOPLE sneak peek at Tuesday night’s episode of I Am Jazz, Jennings and her parents visit her doctor, who delivers some bad news.

“I saw Jazz and her folks about six months ago and that was actually the first time I’ve gotten to examine Jazz, so I called the Jennings today because I’ve been speaking with colleagues and I wanted to get their take on a number of issues,” Jennings’ surgeon Dr. Marci Bowers explains.

“I wanted to follow-up with you in person just because your surgery will be very difficult in terms of what even the most experienced surgeons have encountered,” she tells Jennings. “Not to bring up the bad news first, but you gained in your BMI — which is called body mass index — which basically looks at your weight compared to your height. If we’re going to get a hospital to say, ‘we’re going to allow a surgery at age 17,’ you’re going to have to be at a lower BMI. Literally, they won’t approve it if your BMI is one dot over. When it translates to pounds, it’s about 30 pounds.”

WATCH: Jazz Jennings Responds to Derick Dillard’s Transphobic Tweet: ‘Every Day I Experience Cyber-Bullying’

Upon learning that she is required to lose 30 pounds to be approved for surgery, Jennings is fearful that her dream may not become a reality.

“The fact that I might not be able to get the surgery if I don’t lose 30 pounds, I am absolutely horrified,” she share. “I knew that my weight was a problem, but I didn’t realize that it could affect something that I’ve been waiting for my entire life.”

Dr. Bowers continues to explain that a surgery candidate could be denied if their BMI is too high because “if there’s more weight, it makes the surgery longer and it makes it more difficult.”

The surgeon adds: “What we’re finding is that as one new technology emerges, like hormone blockade — nobody thought we could block puberty — it creates another problem elsewhere. Now we don’t have enough tissue to create the adult genitals of the opposite sex.”

In the season 4 supertease of the reality series, Jennings opened up about her battle with overeating.

“My eating habits are beyond my control,” she admitted. “I really feel like a beached whale.”

I Am Jazz airs Tuesdays (10 p.m. ET) on TLC.

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