"Call Me Caitlyn"
Meet Caitlyn Jenner
NEW DELHI: It’s official, Bruce Jenner is now Caitlyn Jenner. Those of you familiar with ‘Keeping Up With The Kardashians’ know who Bruce Jenner is, rather was -- the patriarch of the household and former husband of Kardashian mama Kris Jenner, stepfather to Kourtney, Kim, Khloé, and Rob (from Kris' marriage to attorney Robert Kardashian), and father to Kylie and Kendall.
Well, Bruce Jenner and now Caitlyn Jenner and is still all those things above. The transition was revealed on the July 2015 cover of Vanity Fair magazine, featuring a stunning photo of Caitlyn Jenner in her first major media appearance presenting as a woman.
“This shoot was about my life and who I am as a person. It’s not about the fanfare, it’s not about people cheering in the stadium, it’s not about going down the street and everybody giving you ‘that a boy, Bruce,’ pat on the back, O.K. This is about your life,” Jenner said.
The most heartfelt part of Jenner’s transformation is summed up by the following tweet:
Leelah Alcorn was an American transgender girl who committed suicide in December 2014. She posted a suicide note to her Tumblr blog, writing about societal standards affecting transgender people and expressing the hope that her death would create a dialogue about discrimination, abuse and lack of support for transgender people.
The note began: “If you are reading this, it means that I have committed suicide and obviously failed to delete this post from my queue.” “'When I was 14, I learned what transgender meant and cried of happiness. After 10 years of confusion I finally understood who I was. I immediately told my mom, and she reacted extremely negatively, telling me that it was a phase, that I would never truly be a girl, that God doesn’t make mistakes, that I am wrong.”
“I formed a sort of a “f*** you” attitude towards my parents and came out as gay at school, thinking that maybe if I eased into coming out as trans it would be less of a shock. 'Although the reaction from my friends was positive, my parents were pissed. They felt like I was attacking their image, and that I was an embarrassment to them. 'They wanted me to be their perfect little straight Christian boy, and that’s obviously not what I wanted.' 'On my 16th birthday, when I didn’t receive consent from my parents to start transitioning, I cried myself to sleep.”
The note ends: “That’s the gist of it, that’s why I feel like killing myself. Sorry if that’s not a good enough reason for you, it’s good enough for me. As for my will, I want 100% of the things that I legally own to be sold and the money (plus my money in the bank) to be given to trans civil rights movements and support groups, I don’t give a s**t which one. The only way I will rest in peace is if one day transgender people aren’t treated the way I was, they’re treated like humans, with valid feelings and human rights. Gender needs to be taught about in schools, the earlier the better. My death needs to mean something. My death needs to be counted in the number of transgender people who commit suicide this year. I want someone to look at that number and say “that’s f***ed up” and fix it. Fix society. Please.”
Alcorn’s suicide attracted international attention, but her story is by no means the only one. The hashtag prompted by Alcorn’s death -- #RealLiveTransAdults -- became a point of call for hundreds of others like her.
Jenner’s transition, in that sense, is important -- as it gives hundreds of young people across the world who are coping with their gender identity, a celebrity to look up at and guide themselves through.