At the Broken Places
A Mother and Trans Son Pick up the PiecesBook - 2017
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As both contributors are professional writers, this joint-memoir is very readable, organized, and informative. It is unsentimental and honest, as Donald remarks toward the end of the book, "... insofar as my re-connection with my mother goes, I don't think it would be fair to say 'We did it; so can you!' That's not what this book is about. A fairer summary would go something like, 'We barely did it; here's what we learned.'" (p. 148-9) The memoir is organized by themes with mother and son penning independent chapters under each theme. The final 50 pages provide edited transcripts of conversations with other parents of trans kids and trans people to offer different experiences and perspectives.
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Mary Collins: "It was as though in a matter of days [after Donald's grand-mother was told he was trans] she had held a 'funeral' for on grandchild and then crafted a new memory book for a different grandchild. ... My ninety-year old mother was the first to bring Donald to buy clothes in the men's department. [She] was the first to tell me to my face without flinching that J. [Donald's female birth given name initial] was never coming back and Donald was here to stay and I must accept it." (p. 82)
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