Bruce Jenner’s sex transition has been hot news for a while. It’s been rumoured for years that he’s a cross dresser (a good demonstration of “there’s no smoke without fire”, especially when tabloids are involved) and he’s finally come to terms with who she is.
I’d been following his transition with keen progress, he’s one of my favourite “Kardashians” and I thought he was too sweet and weak for Kris.
When I was a little girl and in my late teens/early twenties, I wanted to “become a man”. Adaeze the child wanted to become a man because I learned that I would be “married off”, change my surname (horror of horrors!) and be a wife… I so wanted to be someone’s husband, anyway I was about four or five and I thought I was going to be the President of the world, or become a strong leader like Okonkwo in “things fall apart” *the series was on TV then*.
When I got into the university, I wanted to scrape out my ovaries, fallopian tubes and everything female in me and be free from the terrors of the “dysfunctional uterine bleeding” which was as a result of PCOS (I don’t know why I keep putting off writing the PCOS post). Although I didn’t know what exactly I was grappling with until my fourth year in uni when I was twenty-one. I didn’t know about sex change operations at the time and definitely didn’t (and still don’t) have the kind of money for such an endeavour, I might have been tempted to consider it due to the intense frustration that was my companion at the time.
Back to Bruce/Caitlin, I saw a picture on Facebook that was evuuuulll *in my friend Hero’s voice*
But seriously, how won’t she be beautiful? She has access to the best plastic surgeons in the world. Hello! she lives in California!!!
I was on time.com yesterday and was looking at a slideshow of twenty-two influential transgender individuals, Laverne Cox of OiTNB was one of them but two of them really piqued my interest.
The first was Brandon Teena, a female to male transgender individual who was killed senselessly, I’m not saying there are sensible murders though. Brandon was killed by two young men who were his friends before they discovered he was female and passing off as male. After their discovery, they didn’t pass up on any opportunity to make his life miserable. The story ends in a senseless triple murder, they stormed into Brandon’s house after a alcohol binge, killed Brandon, Lisa Lambert- the woman who gave him a place to stay and Philip DeVine- her friend who came visiting that evening. They killed them in front of Lisa’s little child but spared the child’s life. Lisa had tried to shield Brandon by telling them he was out and she was killed for lying to them.
That’s the problem with bigotry, plenty innocent bystanders suffer its effects. When we hear or watch people being targeted because they do not conform to societal mores and standards but have not committed any crime, and we say nothing because they are ‘deviants’ let us remember Philip DeVine and Lisa Lambert who died because they were at the wrong place at the wrong time
The second was Bobby Tipton who was also a female to male transgender individual but the interesting thing is she didn’t undergo any surgery, she was still physically female but she had several affairs with females and even adopted children as a man. However she claimed to be intersex (hermaphrodite isn’t politically correct anymore) Her true gender was only discovered when she died. I wonder how his girl friends didn’t pick up on his true gender. He bound his breasts with bandages though but I still find it weird. I guess we only see what we want to see. Notice how I kept mixing pronouns… it was totally subconscious.
It’s pretty easy to invoke God’s name and say people who change their gender are saying God made a huge mistake in making them a particular gender, I’ve seen several reactions like that. I don’t see it that way, because on some level we all would be guilty of that. I’ve been wearing glasses since 19th June 2006 (I’ll write an anniversary post), am I saying that God made a mistake in giving me these eyes? Why am I trying to augment what God has given me? Why am I not satisfied with my myopic and astigmatic vision that can’t even allow me watch television? Why can’t I accept the fierce headaches and blurred vision that God gave me?
Why do people undergo organ transplants? Why do we have people on pacemakers? How dare we interfere with God’s work, how can we even imagine removing an organ God placed in someone’s body and replace it?
Of course I know it’s not that simple, but the truth is life isn’t black and white. What if my child decided to change his/her sex, or my husband for that matter? As a true Nigerian Christian my answer is “God forbid, it’s not my portion”.
Seriously though, I’d take that person to a competent mental health professional and insist that he/she undergoes counselling and I’ll definitely pray for that person.
If he/she still insists on the procedure, I’d support them on their journey. Bruce told his second wife about his female side thirty years ago. If he’d confronted his issues head on back then, I don’t think things would have been as messy for him as they are now.
The crux of this post is not Bruce or sex-change but tolerance. Sometimes people’s lifestyle choices are going to go against everything we believe in, against everything we know. If their choices are not harming them or others, then we shouldn’t be in a big hurry to shove them under the bus. You can think they’re mentally unbalanced, ain’t no law against thinking. You can think they’re sinning against God and you can tell them your opinion but remember that it’s only an opinion. The fact that you think your view is superior doesn’t give you the right to harass anyone with it or force them to live THEIR lives your way.
In other news, guess who’s finishing NYSC pretty soon… Yep, this hot Mama will finish early next month and will face “the real world”. God has been so faithful to me, through everything. It’s been quite a journey getting to this point, the bumps, the diversions and the delays- especially the delays but I’m so glad it’s ending soon. Can’t wait for POP day.
I got the most awesome news today, it will be unveiled this month. I’m giddy with excitement and can hardly wait to share it here.
Hasta la vista amigos