Dr Oz: Transgender Family Support
Today, Dr. Oz met Brynne and Tina, who shared their family’s story of change as Brynne transitioned from her former identity as Bryan.
Read Brynne & Tina’s Story.
Brynne and her wife Tina have two children, ages 17 and 11. They have been honest with their children about the changes in their lives. Brynne started her transition by dressing in feminine clothes, and when their older daughter began asking questions, they told her the truth.
Their younger daughter only remembers Brynne wearing female clothing, but she had questions at times as well, and her parents never shied away from the truth. Brynne admitted that they were concerned about how her transition would affect the girls.
Dr Oz: Children of Transgender Parents
They live in South Carolina, and she said that many people in their community have negative views of Transgender People. Brynne hoped no one would take out their anger on the children, Brynna and Krista.
Brynna, now 17, remembers when her dad started dressing in feminine tops and short shorts. She said she was initially embarrassed, but she got over it as she discovered how happy it made her father. She said she was also surprised by how supportive her friends were of her unique family situation.
Krista, who is 11, said she still sometimes calls Brynne “Dad,” but also uses the nickname Mom Squared.
Brynne admitted that she felt selfish at first about putting her family through this change, but she knew she had to pursue what would make her happy, which would ultimately strengthen the family. Her daughter Brynna agreed, saying the change in Brynne’s attitude has been remarkable.
Dr Oz: Louie Vs Jennifer Transgender Surgery
Next, Dr. Oz met Louie, a rugged father who worked as a mechanic. Louie said he’s known since age four that something was different about him. He enjoyed girly things like dresses and dolls. He grew up to become a father to his son, Cody, working hard to provide for his son, but Louie said he still wasn’t happy.
Eventually, he made the decision to go through surgery and live his life as Jennifer. Her son Cody remembers working on cars and doing other guy stuff with his dad. He wanted to grow up and be just like him, calling him the perfect father.
But Jennifer knew she was trapped in the wrong body. The confusion and pain became so overwhelming that she once put a gun to her head in desperation, but ultimately didn’t put the trigger. Instead, she decided to pursue Gender Reassignment Surgery.
Cody said Jennifer’s decision initially blindsided him, leaving him feeling betrayed. It made him think his whole childhood was a lie, and he was embarrassed and ashamed that his dad wanted to become a woman. At first, he thought of the experience as taking his dad away from him.
Dr Oz: Jennifer’s Gender Reassignment Surgery
Jennifer said that following her heart cost her everything in life. She was alone and it was a difficult process that compromised her relationship with her son. Cody said he hated her and didn’t care whether he ever saw her again.
They hadn’t spoken to one another in two years, until today. Cody reunited with Jennifer to apologize for how he treated her, explaining that he had to deal with losing his dad. But now he is ready to welcome Jennifer into his life, and wants to forge a new chapter in their relationship, because he knows that this decision has made her so happy.
Jennifer said she loved her son and that her transition was especially difficult because she knew it was tearing her family apart. She tried to communicate with Cody and help him get support, but she said she didn’t realize how big an obstacle he had to overcome.
Cody said he still isn’t sure if he thinks of Jennifer as his mom or his dad. He’s still working on that, and he had some advice for other kids who are going through this type of situation. He said you should try to be accepting, and don’t let negative comments from others get you down.
Daily Strength: Transgender Support Group
If you are looking for resources or support for coping with being Transgender, or a friend or family member is going through it, you can connect with others through the Daily Strength Transgender Support Group at dailystrength.org.
Do you know anyone in your life who is Transgender? How has it affected their relationships with friends and family?