In 1987, Cath’s father made the shocking confession that he was a transsexual and wished to become a woman. Although she wanted to be supportive, Cath didn’t want to lose her dad, and it was hard to accept his decision. In those days, asking for help wasn’t the norm, and gender issues like this were swept under the carpet. Throughout the years of emotional, conflicting and tormenting thought processes, Cath wondered if life was ever going to feel normal again. We all have a story about coming to terms with change, whether this is transgender reassignment, separation, divorce, loss, grief, illness, disability or living through another trauma. As we live through our story, we do the best we can with the strategies we have at our disposal. Sometimes these are not enough and we have to search long and hard to find alternatives. Cath did, and she succeeded. This book is her story.
A Tale Of Two Parts
Part One - The day I learned a new normal
Cath begins part one of her book in the doctor’s surgery awkwardly explaining that her father, Joan, is indeed her father. She continues with a multi-layered story of honesty, strength, forgiveness, courage, regret, horror, conflict, discomfort, secrets, and love. It is the story of how Cath finally let herself be heard, and the story of her father who had no choice but to change.
Part Two - Seven steps for living your new normal
In the second part of the book, Cath shares seven of the strategies that helped with her family challenges. These can support you too, whatever difficulties you’re facing in your life. With self-help tools that focus on topics like your values, self-honesty and positivity, you’ll develop a plan of action to support you while you acknowledge and accept what needs to happen to move forward and live your new normal.
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When Dad Became Joan: Life With My Transgender Father