She obv consulted lots of trans peeps, but says sorry if she "messed up anywhere" .
Plea to reader to support "historically marginalized folks" and we're off!
Suggested to hubby they have coffee and cinnamon buns. After all, who "can eat a cinnamon bun without cracking a smile?" 🤮
Chap. 1 ends on this 'tantalising' cliff hanger!
What ever will happen next?
Won't dead name hubby cos it puts trans people at suicide risk (first of many warnings).
Major theme in Amanda's book is the importance of the internet. Hubby as kid had "no access to this gift we call the
Chap 3. Hubby called fag at school and crucially "By 16 was living on the streets of Toronto" (curiously
The Mavis of Mayhem then turns to her own tragic story. Kids at school call her "Zenji ... a hybrid of Beni (well known movie dog) and the word 'zits'" . 🤣🤣
Tough life. And she has acne.
Kids shouted "Zenji!"
One day group of kids, incl. horrid Sylvie (boo hiss), surround her, douse her thick cotton sweater with *hairspray*. She runs "but they were quicker".
Her back goes "up in flames".
Was expecting a police investigation and a 2 wk stay in burns unit - but what do I know? 🤷♀️
Hubby studying computer science and had been rejected by housemates after cross-dressing around them.
Mavis describes him as "serious, stone-cold babe" and "guys didn't do it for me, but this felt different" .
Chap 5. Hubby starts work for local internet service provider. Marry Aug 97.
Ah and then Amanda bumps into one of the girls who set her on fire. Sylvia however is still weally weally horwid and doesn't want to chat!
"Commonality is a helpful
No, Mavis, no! You don't have breezy convos with old school bullies who set you on fire.
Then she reflects, rather too neutrally, that she "had always wondered ...
Well, yes. Think most peeps would have got the police and school involved - surely her whole back is scarred?
Anyway Amanda takes the opportunity to show how big and kind she is to Sylvie by showing her kindness.
Literally next para she boasts she
"I can't remember a time when I didn't feel like a giant fraud."
You read our minds Amanda!
Due to PCOS they have trouble conceiving child no. 2 (the trans one) and no. 3 comes 3 yrs later.
Mavis starts blogging after child 2.
"What do you call the sage voice of
* ok ok it's Maven really 🤓
Chap 6. Jan 13 - decide to move for "lower provincial taxes" and soon to be trans kid "riddled" with "anxiety and depression" .
"That apple hadn't fallen far from the tree"
In fact, kid screams so loud at night they have to "shut the windows to contain the noise" .
Eve of Pink Shirt Day Feb 14, takes kids to buy pink shirts to "fight homophobia, transphobia" etc.
Later that night another melodramatic scene unfolds.
"What are we going to do?" her spouse asked.
Both go and kiss and hug a sobbing frightened child.
Mavis researches what it means to be trans. Given that this may become a recommended read for parents, this is an esp. imp. chap.
Reassures us she only looks at "well known, established medical sites and reputable LGBTQ orgs"
Amanda argues that trans are an "extremely vulnerable population carries high rates of depression, anxiety, self-
Then Amanda relates her own suicide attempt. Planned it so her brothers and sister wouldn't be "at home without supervision", though chose not to die after all because
"Kevin told me his story of struggle and how he had overcome what was the darkest period of his young life."🙄
Back to trans kid crying in bedroom. "My spouse left our daughter's bedroom
Kid didn't know how to broach subject with Amanda and dad and therefore "she had asked the internet, and it provided the answers".
See, the internet *is* truth.
She then goes into a rather long
Knox reminds the parents reading her book that they were raised in a "time and a
Well I'm the same age as Amanda. Struggling to think of any movies which featured trans people at all. But of course she doesn't name these movies.
Her mom gives her unconditional support, though given Amanda's very troubled teen years
Amanda outlines trans political demands - her kid has nowhere to pee at school, and gets access to the staff single stall toilet. She's sad that schoolgirls don't want to share the loos with
More self-reflections on Amanda's own transphobia and then recounts an extremely tedious of a sort of clash with a character whom she calls
J-Mom makes it clear she doesn't approve of Mavis supporting her trans kid - Alexis. Mavis and Alexis therefore make friends with J-Mom, delighting in her discomfort.
J-Mom obvs reminds her of Sylvia
J-Mom moves away, but Mavis learns that J-Mom
Chap. 10. Blog site more popular. Partner suggests she it as "an advocacy platform". Mavis then posts about having a trans kid but friends say nothing and aren't
Also, her mom stops talking to a life long friend who isn't supportive of her new 'granddaughter' because "love always come first". Life long friend is uninvited to
Chap. 11. Hormone blockers. Mavis assures the reader these are completely safe and are required because the "trans community has one of the highest rates of suicide".
Mavis says it isn't true that kids desist at a rate of 80% (again she daren't link to the study). She says her kid will tell you parental support "saved her life"
Alexis receives diagnosis of gender dysphoria "within a few sessions". Dr impressed "how well she could describe her feelings".
"If you can do one thing for your daughter," a new trans friend
Revelation that Alexis is stage
Struggles to pay for hormones ($450 a shot p/m).
Mavis makes the TRA case for education in schools, not too subtly.
Amanda feels that only if girls were taught that not all girls are "born with the same body parts" and is relieved that the govt. has included learning about trans issues at elementary level.
Alexis continues to do badly at school ("I'm worried we're losing her," one of the staff members said with tears in her eyes")
Couldn't find GIF of Joey being Dr Drake Ramore, but -
Chap. 12. Homeschools Alexi and begins blogging about having trans daughter, doing major media gigs (2015).
"The media seem to love how statistically average we were."
Then fam visit Pride and 'daughter' and hubby get their faces painted (it's starting peeps).
Chap. ends with Amanda lets out a "primal, devastating, hopeless cry".
All the friends who ignored her trans kids are fully supportive of her AGP husband.
How will she live as a member of the most marginalized groups of people on the planet? Will this destroy her happiness?
Will she or won't she transition?
Hiding it from the kids.
They discuss what hubby's new name will be whilst they "stood
I want to be Michelle, he says.
She says "90% of the Michelles I've known have been total bitches". Amanda then goes on to explain she has been punched by a Michelle, another used to eat all her cheese.
(Pls enjoy the humorous repartee)
Amanda vetoes A-names so he choses Zoe
Amanda starts flashbacking to all the times when she noticed that hubby was not comfortable around then. And then this incredible admission:
"We ... were watching the
"This show is good," hubby says "I'm kind of a fan".
Younger kid interjects: "So you're a brony!"
So there are three scenarios here:
1. Amanda doesn't know that MLP is connected to paedophilia and has never word searched
2. Amanda does know what 'brony' means, but doesn't care, and this is being left as a nod.
3. Did publisher, editors, etc do no proofreading work on this memoir at all? Like really?
"Anyone walking by the Mexican stand that morning would have noticed a group of five women closing ranks around one, their arms
What an imagination. I mean, memory.
More about hubby having to hide his true self despite having "dark bushy eyebrows and 2 day old stubble" also he "had
How will Zoe survive now in the high tech male dominated field? Esp. as TW are "one of the least
Two sentences later: "Employment rates and earnings among trans people are some of the lowest in the country"
Again, no citations for these factoids.
Amanda has an internal war, which she describes as the "War of the Two
Logical and Emotional debate their predicament. More arguments with hubby about why he concealed his true self, but it all sounds flat and untrue.
Amanda reveals that
Enter Emotional Zoe. Emotional Zoe and Emotional Amanda have a feisty heart-to-heart and the chap ends with Zoe throwing her phone after
Chap. 18. They aren't talking, but then they make up and decide to inform the kids they don't have a daddy anymore.
The youngest sobs "into his little hands" but the trans 12 yo had the "wisdom of lived experience" and kid and parent hold hands.
Amanda tells her parents "I'm not straight" and claims she had "known for a long time" but it was Catholic family members who put her off saying anything. That and
Chap. 19. "The waiting game was eating Zoe alive".
Amanda's most repeated factoid is the suicide risk and delaying transition: "Long wait time have been shown to cause depression and increase suicide rates."
Again no citations.
Summer 2015 Microsoft contact Amanda and Alexis
"Speaking is like writing on steroids" - we see
Zoe still in the closet, but the Microsoft thing is still going ahead. Video of Amanda and Alexis released by Microsoft Feb 16
This upsets Alexis as classmates are
Amanda goes to see her friend Allison and admits "I've thought about dying a few times". Friend gets her to see her Dr asap - starts antidepressants. 3 weeks later of being on them she is back to normal.
Chap. 21. Zoe has a birthday party.
Amanda not used the L-word yet, still saying "I am
Zoe chooses Michelle as middle name (remember the earlier hilarious convo about that) 🙄
Zoe has official coming out day at work, March 2016 (i.e. 2 months after they all attend her party (?)). Prior to sends email out to 100s of colleagues, same time Mavis
Then they both wait in anticipation of the response.
Amanda reflects on hubby's co-workers thus:
"No one would say anything mean ... that could get them in trouble with HR. But some might choose not to respond, not
Zoe receives loads of congratulatory emails, Mavis' blog post doing well, but 'haters' lurk.
Zoe returns to work, called to a meeting, which is really a secret surprise coming out party. Amanda writes a blog
Daily Mail writes a story on them and deadnames Zoe many times.
"It looks like Gollum" someone says of Zoe and this upsets Mavis. What would happen if Zoe
Mavis is saddened how many people are "focused" on her sexuality and didn't want to "clarify my sexual orientation because it didn't matter".
Hollywood beckons - casting agent from LA asks family to audition for new reality show on US network. So they audition.
Turn it down
Chap. 24. But not for long as she again contradicts her story
Zoe continues to transition, voice coaching and gets misgendered at a drive-in coffee place.
Chap. 25. "OUR SOCIETY IS obsessed with trans people's genitals". Mavis won't allow journalists to ask *that* question, esp. not about her kid.
"Some women have penises and some men have vulvas."
As she's said a million times before if trans peeps don't get surgeries "increased risk of suicide" and these need to be "funded"
Remember Mavis saying all of five mins ago she wouldn't discuss surgery? Turn over page Zoe visits a "surgical clinic that specialized in exactly what she is looking for".
Date set 23 May 2017. Mavis notices other patients have an "unmistakable
Surgery done - Zoe so happy - has the "unmistakable look of peace".
They decide to get married again, this time as a lesbian couple. 24th anniversary.
"Here's the reality I denied myself for 40 yrs: I'm gay. A big ol' lesbian. ... I should have figured this out ages ago. The biggest indication was
Mavis then relates an incident in which she got caught fooling around with a "female friend" - but was caught by this person's mom and told off.
Is so scared and scarred by this mom telling her
Expresses dismay that society expected her to simply get married and have babies.
And talks about herself in 3rd person:
Love betwn Zoe and her is built on foundation of "long struggle" not because Zoe is "a woman".
Finds Zoe "massively hot"
"This type of trans-exclusionary behaviour is extremely dangerous to an already marginalized community. Telling me I'm not a lesbian is another way to invalidate my
Amanda has been known to file complaints to the police when haters cross the line.
Amanda and Zoe orders wedding dresses for their big day. Problem is they are both femme-presenting lesbians. Another hilarious convo
Nov 16 - Another Microsoft event to discuss online advocacy work.
Mavis keynote speaker for IWD - advocates TWAW.
Meets PM Justin Trudeau on day trans rights bill was tabled.
"Alexis + Zoe are happy to live their lives quietly"
One kid tells his "mama" that he is sad he doesn't have a dad anymore - Zoe reassures kid that guys can learn from "strong women" too.
Then a Finnish transwoman and her wife come to visit because of
However, Mavis happy that she helping the community grow.
Final chapter - thank you to all who managed it this far!
Ends on remarriage, August 2017. Zoe wears champagne coloured dress, Amanda wears same colour shoes. Zoe had dreamed about this wedding since forever. "This was Zoe's day."
Zoe did wedding planning when
Amanda reflects on her 3 year journey. But that "Hate is loud and violent, but it still burns out quickly." (Not mine Amanda.) Of course, love will win over all. Gets tattoo with "Lead with Love".
Will only hang up advocacy hat when when her
They adopt Ashley who isn't "LGBTQ" but is an "exceptional ally".