It’s very politically incorrect now on Social Media to speak about Caitlyn Jenner as anything less than a saint. But this is still America, and I’m allowed to ask questions and challenge opinions while speaking my own. I’m a logical middle-aged woman and try very hard to understand people’s varied perspectives, and to be honest I still have my doubts about Caitlyn being the face you want leading today’s Transgender movement. Psychiatrists famously say that “past performance reflects future behavior” and in my lifetime I’ve found this rule to be abundantly true. So how does changing your gender identity clear your slate? If you were a liar before putting on a dress wouldn’t you still be a liar? Or if you were an absentee father in your 10 children’s lives would you wake up after your transition a better parent? How you gender-identify with male or female traits has zero to do with character. Character is made up from a lifetime of choices, events, challenges, and how you react to them. It’s the character of Bruce Jenner that I question carrying over into his new identity as Caitlyn. Should becoming Caitlyn absolve Bruce Jenner of being an absentee father or an unpleasant,lying,self-centered individual? That’s my dilemma as I sit down to watch “I Am Cait” premiere on E! I know my questions won’t be answered in the first episode, but I wanted readers of the blog to understand my mind-set. 🙂
The show opens with a bang! Caitlyn can’t sleep and does a video journal at 4:30am. She has on no make-up and is very honest about her fears.
We then jump to the day after the Vanity Fair article hit with Jenner watching the program with her glam squad. Kim Kardashian calls Caitlyn with her twitter stats, because that’s important….and a pep talk of sorts abot beating Obama’s record.Ronda Kamihira (Kris Jenner’s ex assistant and BFF) is now Caitlyn’s stylist and is there watching the news with Caitlyn. That episode of “Keeping Up With The Kardashians” when Kris Jenner thought Bruce was dating her friend Ronda Kamihira now makes sense….Rhonda was helping Bruce in his transition secretly, while Kris seethed about the friendship. Kris saw it as a dual betrayal.
Caitlyn is next shown in a talking-head interview stating the dangers facing the transgender community. The suicide rates are alarming. She wants to use her voice to become an advocate for the community, and claims to be an expert at “her story” only. It’s hard to focus on her face as she speaks because something has happened to Caitlyn’s left eye. Perhaps nerve damage from injections or one of the many facial plastic surgeries? The risks from the many cosmetic procedures she has had at age 65 are overwhelming, yet she continued to forge ahead which is admirable.
Caitlyn is excited because her mother and sister are coming to see her for the first time since transitioning. Mother Esther Jenner and sisters Lisa and Pamela discuss in the car how they found out about Bruce Jenner’s desire to become a woman, and what Bruce shared with them in the past about wanting to live an authentic life. Caitlyn is visibly nervous on camera waiting for them to arrive as Ronda helps her dress.When they arrive Esther is delighted and Caitlin’s sisters both think she’s beautiful! Esther tells Caitlyn she hid her secret very well and that she had no idea whatsoever about her gender issues. Caitlyn says she was a professional liar and kept it all locked away.
Kylie “Face Timed” Bruce while at the dentist. She had never seen her as Caitlyn. Kylie was under the influence of anesthesia and a bit loopy. She told Caitlyn she looked “not scary” and “so pretty” and she loved her “Daddy.” Caitlin has given all of the kids permission to still call her Daddy which is really sweet and helpful.
Esther has lots of questions for Caitlyn’s therapist Susan. Esther is the best part of this show and truly wants to learn more about her son’s journey being transgender. You can see her struggling to get to a place of total acceptance and questioning her own parenting decisions. Bruce’s 2 sisters are equally devoted to finding Caitlyn’s new appearance less shocking. Caitlyn is worried that her guy friends won’t be understanding. Later, Caitlyn and Esther sit down for a tearful heart to heart conversation. Esther identifies with the soul of her child, not the sex. Her love for Caitlyn/Bruce is beyond gender.
Kylie shows up unexpectedly and surprises the Jenner extended family. Esther gifts Kylie with a photo of herself taken at age 17. Kylie come in with glam on the brain and decides to give daddy a hair make-over adding long teal extensions. After she leaves Bruce worries that his children don’t really approve of him because they never visit. Khloe, Rob, and Kourtney have not seen Caitlyn since her transition and it makes her really sad. Caitlyn doesn’t want her family torn apart, but that may happen with some of his Kardashian step-children.
Kim and Kanye West pay a visit to Caitlyn while the Jenner’s are still visiting. Kanye has really been Caitlyn’s most vocal supporter and brought the same out in Kim. Kim goes through Caitlyn’s closet and discovers that Kris Jenner and Caitlyn both own the same Tom Ford dress. Plans to prank Kris asap ensue.
Caitlyn speaks out again on Transgender suicides which are reaching an epidemic. She travels down to San Diego to speak with the parents of a 14 yr-old Transgender youth named Kylar Prescott that took his own life weeks ago. She tries to offer comfort and support to Kylar’s mother. It’s good that the show used its last segment to raise awareness about teens facing gender identity issues. They need the help, resources, education,and understanding of us all to thrive. I wish more of the program would have focused on “doing good’ rather than visits from Kim and Kanye.
I give the first episode a “C” in content and an “A” for mom Esther Jenner.
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