The show has clearly been building up to a grand finale of Caitlyn and Kris facing off, and indeed has trailed this whenever they could. Thankfully, while it did take up a substantial part of the show, it was not all of it.
I’ve said this before and I’ll say this again. When it comes to family, there’s no point in arguing. Unless they have treated you really badly, people will always side with them rather than you. So do what they want. If that means no further contact, or putting up with them going on about what a selfish bastard you are, you just have to put up with it. Any attempt to do otherwise will just prove them right in most people’s eyes. Also, if you really do care about them, give them space to come to terms with what is going on. You have the benefit of finally being free, they don’t.
Anyway, the first half of the show was cringe-worthy. The second half was thought-provoking. Cait decided that she needed a re-naming ceremony, and so Jenny brought in Allyson Robinson, a trans woman who is also a Baptist Minister, to perform it. Candis managed to drag along Boy George to sing, and a great deal of sisterhood was on view.
One way of looking at this is that it was a cynical attempt to get Christian America onside, but Cait does seem sincere in her beliefs so despite my deep distrust of reality TV I’m happy to go along with it. There’s no reason why trans women shouldn’t be spiritual. We have, after all, been deeply involved in religion for millennia.
It was the fact of the re-naming ceremony that got to me. As Cait said, most trans women don’t have one. One of the reasons for that is that we mostly go through the process with little or no support, and often in secret. When I did my official name change I had no one nearby I could celebrate with. When I got my new birth certificate I was in the UK and Kevin was in California, and anyway I didn’t want to be public about it.
I think it would have been nice to have had some sort of celebration, but it would have been even better to have been able to go through the transition process with a bunch of friends. Even Caitlyn didn’t manage that. Perhaps, with all of this new visibility, it will happen more often.
Anyway, I was really happy to see Chandi play a major part in the ceremony, and to see Geena Rocero among the guests at the re-naming. Hopefully that will make trans women of color think that whatever benefits flow from Cait’s show will help them too.
I see from the social media gossip today that the show has been renewed for a second season, despite disappointing ratings. Apparently the audience for the final episode was 1.3 million. I’m guessing that a substantial proportion of that was trans people. There are probably more than 1.3 million of us in the USA. I know that’s cynical of me, but I don’t think most cis people care enough to want to listen to our stories.