“I couldn’t [transition] privately. So I could either have done it and people would have known, and other people would have written about it, and it wouldn’t be the truth. Or I could do it myself and try to help people and put a face on an issue people don’t understand. Obviously the transgender movement has not progressed in the way that the gay and lesbian movement has. But I’m an activist — that’s just the kind of person I am.”
“This journey wasn’t just about transitioning; it was a journey of coming to understand myself, learning how to take care of myself, putting my fears away and putting my needs as a priority instead of concerning myself with what everyone else thought. It’s, essentially, really about growing up.”
“I thought that transgender people must have felt much worse than I did in order to risk losing all the things that one can lose by transitioning. Until I really accepted this about myself and got over any of my own transphobia that I had, I really felt like I wouldn’t be accepted. I thought I would ruin my life. I thought it was, ‘Be yourself but become a pariah and put your family through hell,’ or, ‘Don’t be yourself and live a horribly uncomfortable existence where everybody relates to you in a way that’s not you.’ “
“My hope is that by allowing people to [see me transitioning], they’re going to see that I’m just kind of a regular guy,” he said. “And that being transgender and transitioning isn’t the craziest thing in the world.”
– Chaz Bono, explaining his reasons for transitioning (which runs contrary to Camille Paglia’s armchair theorizing about the causes of Chaz’s unhappiness)
EDITOR’S NOTE: I fucked up Chaz’s pronoun in an earlier version. Feel free to crucify me.