Caitlyn's big reveal has sprouted some intense and interesting conversations over the past few weeks. I think it is wonderful that this subject is getting some much needed airtime in our society. I work with homeless in my city, and it is shocking how many people I have worked with who have been rejected from their homes, their families, and even their communities and have no where to go but the streets. Now tell me, is this the proper way to treat a fellow human? Even if you are of the opinion that this is a mental illness, do we discard our mentally ill to the streets?
I posted that first paragraph to my personal Facebook page yesterday and was pretty shocked by some of the replies I received. Still so much hate, ignorance and misunderstanding. One comment called the trans surgery body mutilation, but in the next comment stated that breast implants were ok in his book. Another comment maintained that homosexuality was only taken off the DSM-II to gain political votes in the 90s. I am not sure where they are getting this info, and I'm a little concerned about what is happening in the education system.
I should clear up right now that I do not think this is mental illness. It is still in the DSM-II, and a fun fact is that many in the transgendered community don't want it to be de-classified because then the treatments would not be covered by our health care system. Homosexuality was still classified as a mental illness until 1973, but I think it was also okay to beat your children and wives back then. Women couldn't vote for a good chunk of the 20th century, and the world was flat for a very, very long time. Just because this is what society believed, doesn't mean that it was right. Society's norms, and knowledge changes (and hopefully progresses) all the time. I can't wait until we live in a world where a story like this, just isn't a story. Just another happy ending.
I, for one, am happy to see a celebrity that is in the news to stand for something. Caitlyn is, and will be in the future, a trailblazer for many trans youth and adults out there. She is an inspiration to the mental health community for just being proud of who she is, regardless to what society might be saying. If this gets people talking about the discrimination that these people face in their everyday lives even a little bit then I say bravo! So here is to you Caitlyn Jenner, I look forward to hearing more about your journey.