Reflections on Bruce Jenner: Sister, You’ve Been on My Mind


0Shares0 0 0 0 TweetPocket Bruce Jenner is one of us. Most specifically, I speak of her as a transgender woman whom I now call my sister. She needs us as much as we need her; and her story, while told in a very different setting than reflects most people’s reality, is the story of all transgender women.    To be sure, there are many aspects of Her life that are completely foreign to anyone except, well, Her. (“Her” is how she referred to the female identity that’s always been present. I use this instead of “Bruce” because I am constitutionally unable to call a transgender woman by her birth-assigned male name).  Yet, as I listened to her interview with Diane Sawyer, which I found to be respectful and appropriately educating (you could have dropped the male pronouns once she came out though, Diane), I heard a story I’ve heard many, many times. I’ve even told it of myself. As children living in an experience as the Gender Other, we have clear definition or understanding to describe what is in our hearts and minds. We know that we feel somehow wrong in our gender role. Some of us are smart enough...

Bullying in Childhood Stays With Us

Bullying in Childhood Stays With Us

0Shares0 0 0 0 TweetPocketChildhood bullying takes many forms. We tend to think and talk of it as a phenomenon that happens in schools; which is of course often true, but not always. Bullying frequently occurs in families, and is enacted by older, stronger, or more able-bodied siblings, cousins, and even older adult family members that include aunts and uncles, parents and grandparents. Growing older, we often tell ourselves that it was “kid stuff,” that we outgrew. Forgive and forget, right? Except when we do neither, but tell ourselves we’ve done both. Peering back down the long road we’ve travelled since that season of our life, we tend to shudder and attempt to slam the door shut on those memories. Yet, the door doesn’t close all the way, flying open at inopportune moments.  In those instances, we vividly recall not only the incident(s), but the awful sensations that accompanied it and how helpless we felt in that moment. We never like to revisit the things from our past that make us shudder. So why go there? It’s a legitimate question. After all, nobody wants to revisit a painful past. Why would a distant memory of being bullied matter to us today? Well, what happened in the past...