Thursday, September 1, 2011

News and Updates

Five things to report.  If any interest you, feel free to comment.

1. Chaz Bono, Cher's son who was born female (Chastity), was just announced as a contestant on the new season of "Dancing With The Stars."  Hateful remarks were immediately made by traditional "family" organizations and assorted intolerant individuals.  Chaz refuses to be intimidated by the comments and Cher herself tweeted several messages in support of her son.  Chaz will be the show's first transgender contestant.

2. Last night, ABC broadcast a news special on transgendered children.  It was well-done for the most part.  If you missed it, you can view it on their website here

One fact that isn't widely known outside the TG community is the horrible rate of suicide among people like me -- it is 50%.  That may surprise you but it doesn't surprise me.  When you are so different that everything in society aligns against you, telling you you're an unacceptable freak, life can be unbearable.  Suicide is often considered by us as an alternative to living in pain.

3. I visited my friend Larry tonight.  He's in a rehab facility.  Larry is the 45 year old printer who suffered a heart attack and stroke last month.  He's doing better.  His physical ability is improving; he can't walk yet but can get around holding two canes.  His speech is still a little slurred, but his mental ability is near-normal.  Most important, the depression he was in is lifting.  He isn't happy, but he isn't as despondent as he was initially.  I gave him a baseball I bought at my recent ballgame and tried to pep him up.

4. In March, I told you about my friend Geoff who had just been diagnosed with a brain-tumor.  Geoff underwent radiation treatment and is doing fairly well.  He's coming to visit in two weeks, during which we'll talk more deeply about his situation.  One of you (Wendy) has asked me a few times about Geoff's progress so I'll keep you posted.  I'm really touched that Wendy cares.

5. I heard that polka-dot dresses are going to be fashionable this Fall, so I went looking for one.  I luckily found a beautiful one in green tonight, made by Calvin Klein.  Fortunately for me, this expensive dress was marked down to only $10 because the back-zipper is broken.  I can deal with that.  I plan to try on the dress tomorrow night after work and will post pictures soon.

Have a happy holiday weekend!


  1. I am excited to see Chaz on DWTS! I did not see the ABC Special last night but I want to watch it, hopefully tomorrow!

    Glad Larry and Geoff are doing a bit better. I am sure your visits and support help them!

    I have a cute polka dot top I have never it just dresses that are going to be fashionable or polka dots in general?

    Hope you have a nice weekend too!

  2. Wow, just watched the news spot. I was so touched by Dyson and Jackie's stories. Yay for Dyson for standing up for what he wanted at such a young age. And for Jackie's parents to realize that she really should be taken seriously. Those parents are amazing. Many parents wouldn't be. When Jackie's father said one of his biggest fears is Jackie finding a mate, having someone to love, I immediately thought of you. You could be such a huge help for people like this. You are amazing.

    I think about your friend Geoff and have been meaning to ask about him. Since I have been such an absentee blogger of late, I didn't know about Larry. Glad to hear both are doing better.

    I'm not a TV person so don't tune in to DWTS. But yay to Cher for openly Tweeting and standing up for her son. I know she didn't always feel that way. But she came around fairly quickly. Thanks for posting the news link!

  3. I am always worried about the children in these news clips. A woman I work with was worried that her daughter wanted to be SpiderMAN for Halloween. She was trying to convince her to be SpiderWOMAN. And I was like 'Honey the girl is 7, and it is Halloween, I don't think it 'means anything' that she wants to dress like her favorite Superhero.' I think people put way to much pressure on children to fit into gender roles. If she wants to force her daughter to wear a skirt over her costume on Halloween I can't imagine what she would do if her daughter wanted to ACTUALLY be a boy.
    I'm glad that your friends are doing a little better.
    Also polka dots are TOTALLY in this season ;)

  4. I'll definitely watch that ABC thing! What's the problem if Chaz wants to dance?? (I don't get people sometimes...).
    I'm happy your friends are doing better. Some of our friends are not doing that good though... It has been a bad week. A friend of G's died and another has a very bad case of cancer. And a very good childhood friend of mine also has it. They' re all less than 50 years old. My friend is actually 29... Sorry to share this here, but it has been a shock.

    All of you out there, please cherish what you've got. We're all so fragile. Best wishes to your recovering friends and to you for being so supportive.

  5. Chaz on DWTS, had no idea, don't watch TV, but good for him. Of course it is an attention getter to drive people to want to watch, and to stir up a little controversy. If they didn't have controversy then it wouldn't be so popular. I think I would love to see how the slow dances with his female counterpart, that eye contact as well as that enlightened stare comes out. That is going to mean more to me then the dance itself. The passion within the eyes...
    In the case of "jackie's" parents. Kudos to them for being so supportive. If more parents would be that understanding. Its also amazing how the friends have adjusted, her classmate, even her family...
    I am really curious in about 10-15 years when the first generation of kids who underwent the new transgender hormone treatment..where they will be in the future. But that we would only have to wait for....
    I am wishing the best of healthy, speedy recoveries for both Larry and Geoff, sorry that so many of your friends are sick

    and to comment on polka dots...uggh..i dont think i can ever wear polka! Good luck Ally, I am sure you are going to look absolutely FABULOUS in it.

  6. This whole Chaz Bono thing has really thrown me for a loop. I'm very traditional and conservative, but frankly what's the big deal? He was born a female and always felt he was a male and so he surgically had this condition altered. I really don't see anything wrong with that and don't see how that's not "family friendly"? ~Serene

  7. Thank you for your thoughts, guys.

    Serene, thank you for your feedback. As I understand the position of these groups, they are saying that being gay or transgendered is a "choice" and that "promoting" the gay/TG "lifestyle" tells their kids it is okay to choose to be like this. Therefore, it isn't "family-friendly."

    The flaw in the position, beyond the intolerance, is that being homosexual or transgendered is NOT a choice; it's an immutable fact. We don't want to change anyone, just be free to live naturally. Moreover, if anyone walked in our shoes for a day, they'd realize nobody in their right mind would choose to be a social outcast.

  8. I was glad to read Larry and Geoff are both on the way to recovery :)

  9. I don't have TV during the week, so I'm afraid I missed the special. I'll check it out in a sec.

    I have no problem with Chaz performing on DWTS and wish that the "family friendly" values would start to change. If the "right" thing to do is to conform and deny your true self, who the heck would want to be right? It's so oppressive. It's teaching kids to do "what's right" form themselves so long as it falls under social norms.

    Hope your friends will continue to improve in health.

  10. Yay, Chaz. I will absolutely support him.

    This statistic breaks my heart. 50%?? Ugh. I'm so happy that you have made a choice to be here. You are wonderful.

    Glad both of your friends are doing better. They are both very lucky to have you as a friend IRL.


  11. Dimi - Sending lots of love to you and your friends - Best and only advice I can offer - is to take one day at a time...There will be some good days and there will be some awful days, but if you are taking one day at a time, you get the benefit of the good days without ruining them because of worrying about the bad days...
    Ally - glad Larry and Geoff are doing ok - Depression is a terrible thing, so it is wonderful news that Larry's is starting to lift..
    Did not get to comment on your "disaster" post this week...I read your blog because I enjoy it - it is humourous and varied and interesting as well as being enlightening in a wonderful and sensitive way about an issue that I knew very little about - the suicide statistic that you mention is horrific...Wish people were more understanding about every group who are different - the world would be a much happier place...Lots of love

  12. I am excited Chaz will be on the show, but as in most TV shows, I don't watch it. :( I have no life.

    I am happy to hear that your friends are okay, I am so sorry about both of their conditions. My heart goes out to them. Keep us updated.

    The transgendered children issue has always been very tough to deal with. I don't think kids should have any kind of surgery until they finished growing physically. That and kids change their mind a lot. I mean, I see kids with tattoos, 12 year olds, and I wonder if they are going to want that their whole lives? I know it is not the same at all though and I am not an expert on that. However, I fully encourage letting kids explore what they want. If a girl wants to dress like a boy or vice verse, let them. :)

    I cannot wait to see this dress!


  13. I'm glad to hear about Chaz being on DWTS. I'm not a big fan of reality TV myself, but it's great to see pop-culture beginning to accept people who are transgendered.

    And as far as I'm concerned, polka dots are always in style :) Can't wait to see the new dress!

  14. It's my first time commenting on your blog - I've seen your comments many times on other blogs and decided to pay a visit. :)

    I look up at you so very much. It's wonderful how you stand up for transgender issues and that you connect with others over the Internet but also in real life. You seem such a caring, nice person.

    I really like your outfit posts by the way! :)

    Keep posting! :)

  15. Just an aside as to the "family friendly" argument, I've been meaning to show you this link:

    And I think it applies to transgendered, too. Made me laugh :)