Coming Out as Transgender – “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step” – Lao Tzu

Living the Lie

To come-out as gay, to come-out as transgender, or to come-out as a survivor…. means that we’re leaving the lie behind.  Childhood is filled with honest delights.  When we became caged by our secret we could no longer allow anyone to know our truth. We lived many many years, decades even in our constructed life, never relaxing, never telling the truth, sometimes longing to share this heavy burden with someone but feeling too ashamed, embarrassed and confused to allow it.  Then, one day you come-out.


Doesn’t “come-out” sound like way too calm a way to describe an event that is being delivered with the force of so much pent-up emotional energy? This day has been brewing for a very long time. It’s been planned, rehearsed and longed for.  I visualize an egg shell cracking open to make way for the emergence of new life. Empty Prison CellI see an angry person kicking the door off the hinges of a locked room. I envisage a slave breaking away from chains of lies and being free now to tell the truth.  Laying down the burden of lies.

The Burden of Truth

You are free.  Free to be you. Who are you?  You are the person who’s been there all along, waiting for her turn to stand up, to speak up, to show up. You are Spirit. Next, you are gender. Gender is a sensibility, a feeling, a knowing and last you are your physical body whose genitals might one day reflect your gender. Along with this new found freedom to live your truth is the burden of social resistance to your truth. Seems we have to struggle every inch of the way.

The Awkward Conversation

Why do they always want to know about the “operation”. Why are they so curious about what’s down there.  Easy!  They immediately begin seeing you “doing it” and they have to start filling in the blanks like who are you doing it with, a man or a woman? Does that make you gay or straight? I know that the surgery gives you a vagina, but what about your prostate, what happens to that?  Initially this conversation is awkward but it really is an important one to have if the questioner is someone you care about.  It’s healthy to be curious and a good and honest conversation, if you’ve got the stamina for it, helps to dispel ignorance and that, my friend, can only help the cause.

If you have thoughts to share about this post or any other, please leave them below.  I’d love to hear from you.

In kindness,



Caitlyn Jenner preparing to help the transgender community

Caitlyn’s Journey

Today I watched the first episode of I Am Cait. She spent a few days with some very interesting transgendered ladies from as far away as New York State.

Caitlyn Jenner's $3.5million Malibu Beach home.

They chatted, and got to know each other in Caitlyn’s lovely Malibu Beach home.

Caitlyn was the newest to transition and expressed most concern about the pitch of her voice and her unreadiness to be seen in a swimsuit. Join the club, Caitlyn!  The other ladies were many years into it and were very comfortable with who they were.


The Hostess with the Mostess

Caitlyn hosted the ladies in Los Angeles then they traveled together in a hired tour bus to San Francisco to visit with the Human Rights Commission and listen to the stories of a couple of transgendered women survivors of sexual abuse, assault and discrimination.

Homeless Trans-woman

These women were typical of economically challenged trans-women. Many are homeless-chronically unemployed, emotionally challenged and are forced to earn a meager living in the sex trade. This community’s needs are great and it is looking to Caitlyn to provide the long awaited celebrity voice, no matter how gruff, to educate and inspire sympathy from the public.

The Blinders of Privilege

One of the guests was Jenny Boylan, national co-chair of the Board of Directors of GLAAD, the media advocacy group for LGBT people worldwide. Ms Boylan expressed some concern about Caitlyn’s privileged life dimming her ability to see clearly and appreciate the tribulations of a lower placed transitioning woman.

V.I.P. Name Tag

I admit that Caitlyn did come across a tad spoiled and I might be mistaken but I even think I spotted….dare I say it, a hint of chauvinism. It’s bound to happen. It’s a straight male entitlement that unfortunately isn’t affected by hormone therapy but it’s something that Caitlyn’s going to have to work on along with the pitch of her voice.


Becoming a woman is not an easy transition. Being a woman isn’t easy either. It’s not all lipstick and pantyhose. It comes with many trials. We often cannot protect ourselves and are frequently the target of assaults both physical/sexual and emotional.

Sometimes it feels like there is a war being waged against women in generalwords of aggression and that’s why trans-women are attacked with such a vengeance.

To be clear, I hold great promise for Caitlyn, that she will accomplish what she has set out to do. There is no doubt that she will make the difference in many lives through her advocacy, love and strong but softening voice.

She has my total support.
Wishing you all and Caitlyn a kindness based life.
If you have something to say about this or any transgender issue please leave your comment below or email me at

Transgender Troops in the Military

“The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are.”

― C.G. Jung

Who do you feel yourself to be?  How do you see yourself?  What is true for you?

According to USA Today the Department of Defense has begun the process of dismantling the ban on transgenders serving in the military. Issues concerning uniforms for transgender troops, medical services, morale and housing will be among the topics to be discussed.

Transgender ban in the military is addressed

Downward view of multi-tiered narrow staircase clad in checkerboard tile ending with a sign that reads Please Watch Your Step

As important as it is to have these conversations, it still sounds like the transgendered person is the third sex.  I realize that the institutionalization of transgendered people translates to the normalization of transgendered people and to quote Martha Stewart, “that’s a good thing”. But I wish there was a way to address this issue without it sounding like we are dealing with a third sex.  There are already women in the military.  That means that people who are in male to female transition will assume to be female. As such she will be addressed in the feminine, issued the normal female kit and be sent on her way. Done!  Same for female to male transition only in reverse.

When you think about it the normalization of transgenders in the military will go a long way to eliminating the fear and ignorance that put the ban there in the first place. I’ll resist the urge to quote Martha again.

Another institution is in the news these days.  A penitentiary in Rio de Janeiro is rewriting the rule book on transgender inmates with special attention given to their protection and choosing the correct population for them to join.

If you want to share your opinion on these topics, please leave your comment below.

To a kindness-based life.

Caitlyn Jenner’s Courage Awarded

I watched Caitlyn Jenner accept the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage on TV the other night.  More importantly I listened to her acceptance speech. My God I was impressed.  She was beautiful to behold.  She was glamorous old Hollywood.  She was articulate, caring, humble, and grateful. Her presence was HUGE.

The statistics she quoted were staggering. For example, transgendered people are sexually assaulted 66% more often than non-transgendered people.  Most of these survivors are living with post-traumatic stress disorders.  Transgendered people are beaten, murdered and commit suicide more often than non-transgendered people.

Caitlyn made me sit up and take notice.  She is here to make a difference.  She is here to make up for lost time. Her mission and purpose are crystal clear. Her message was one of acceptance; inclusive, margin-less acceptance of trans-gendered people in general and trans-gendered youth in particular.

Caitlyn Jenner accepting her award for courage

Caitlyn Jenner accepting her award for courage from the Arthur Ashe Foundation

In closing she said  “Trans people deserve something vital, they deserve your respect,” she said. “From that respect comes a more compassionate community.”


Wishing you a kindness-based life.



You can always reach me at

Trans Sexual Rights in New Zealand

I just read a news story telling of a department store in New Zealand called Farmers that is instating “non-specific” change rooms in their clothing departments and retraining the staff to provide sensitive customer care.  These actions are in response to the mistreatment of a trans woman named Mary Haddock, a prominent media personality there.

Mary Haddock -Staniland

Mary Haddock-Staniland

On the one hand, one might think that Farmers is making a forward thinking progressive business decision by creating and naming this changing room space “gender neutral”. On the other hand this approach is not helping society in making the leap to accepting whatever gender  I am  expressing and welcoming me into the restroom or change room that matches it….no questions asked.  I believe that should be the ultimate goal in our evolution as humans.

Either way there is nothing “neutral” about trans-women.  The trans-women I know are very clear and leave no doubt as to what side of the gap they live on.  Their feminine spirit could never be construed as neutral.

As for training service staff, I send Farmers my kudos.  Brand representatives (service staff) must be authentically kind, caring and helpful to everyone all the time. That is what “service” means.  This is basic common sense.

Here’s to a kindness based life.


Your comments on this topic or any other are always welcome below.

You can always reach me at

Trans Woman Secrets to Loving Yourself

We are all born with a perfectly clean slate.  It isn’t long, however, before we begin to become aware of perceived shortcomings.  It comes as no surprise, then, that as adult trans women we find it so difficult to love ourselves.  Louise Hay shows us the importance of loving ourselves and teaches a technique to use to develop that love.  She calls it the “mirror technique” and it simply requires that you look into the mirror, into your own eyes, and tell yourself that you love yourself; that you sincerely and deeply love yourself.

transwoman looking at her face in a mirror

Transwoman using the mirror technique.

Now, initially, this is not an easy thing to do.  For one thing you don’t believe it when you say it.  Your mind wants to argue about it. It wants to point out all your flaws and remind you of all your foibles and past faux pas. But, gradually, as you practice every day you begin to believe that you are loveable and that you do really and truly love yourself.  You form a new habit of self love and respect.  You begin to hold yourself differently as you move through your day and you begin to expect to be treated well all the time by whoever you meet.  Your confidence level rises.  Your renewed unconditional self-love then overflows into all your relationships both intimate and casual and allows you to easily show love and respect for others while judgement and cynicism fall away.

As you practice living your feminine truth you discover that you have to be your own best friend.  You have to be able to depend on yourself to pick yourself up when you falter.

Heart full of "I LOVE YOU"

I love you

You will need to quickly forgive yourself when you err and step back into your confident woman self without hesitation.

Womanhood is not an easy role.  A woman might be a rocket scientist but she’s seen superficially first as a woman.  We are under a microscope most of the time.  We are judged, categorized, and labeled. We are not all pin-up girls.  Glamour doesn’t come easily for all of us.  We have to work at it, some have to work harder than others.  But underneath it all where love lives, beauty shines forth.

It won’t be covered or stifled. Love for self and others is impossible to hide. Like attracts like and love attracts love.  It’s the only way to live.

“Just be, right now, here; and breathe. Begin to trust the magic of yourself.”  — Nikki Rowe


You can always reach me at