Bruce Ward , Canwest News Service August 22, 2008
"Mom, I think that is what I am."
Unless you've been there, it's hard to understand what Jaime Johnson was feeling when her 20-year-old daughter Jen looked at her and said those words as they watched a TV show on transgendered people.
"I was in total denial and panic," Jaime says. "I thought everyone is going to think she's a freak."
When Jaime (their names have been changed) got home from work that summer's day in 2003, Jen was watching Oprah. It wasn't one of the upbeat, sunny episodes. Oprah had assembled a panel of male-to-female transgenders, and each of them spoke about the steep cost of their transition - lost jobs, estrangement from family and friends, complicated surgical procedures, the ridicule and threats of violence they endured.
"It was horrible. I didn't want my child to have to face that. And I didn't want to face it myself." . . .Read More