Search: brenda reimer
Why: In response to this article about the Canadian hippies who are in the news because they controversially refuse to tell people the gender of their baby Storm, Caroline posted this sad tale about a boy (a twin) who - after a botched circumcision - was raised as a girl. He eventually went back to being a boy, and then he committed suicide. Let's watch:
Answer: Aww :( He was born Bruce, called Brenda, and then renamed David Reimer.
As little kids (with twin brother Brian):
And in between, the Peter Brady years.
The More You Know: Because the circumstances seemed so perfect - whatwith the lack of gender identity crisis (at least initially) and with an ideal control (identical twin brother [who turned out to be schizophrenic]) - Bruce/Brenda/David got sucked into being a gender reassignment guinea pig for most of his childhood. Once his dong got destroyed, psychologist John Money convinced Bruce's parents to get him a surgery to remove his testes, call him Brenda, and turn him into a lady. For years, the psychologist wrote notes like this:
The child's behavior is so clearly that of an active little girl and so different from the boyish ways of her twin brother.I feel like I don't have to tell you that these were just nonsense lies. From 22 months into his teenage years, Brenda - who did not yet have her artificially constructed lady vagina - peed through a hole surgeons had placed in hiser abdomen. Hse was also given estrogen during adolescence so he would grow boobs. But really:
Reimer did not identify as a girl. He was ostracized and bullied by peers, and neither frilly dresses (which he was forced to wear during frigid Calgary winters) nor female hormones made him feel female. By the age of 13, Reimer was experiencing suicidal depression, and told his parents he would commit suicide if they made him see John Money again.Turns out that the parents had been lying to Money the whole time about the success of the gender reassignment! So at age 14, they began to reverse the procedures with testosterone injections, a double mastectomy, and two phalloplasty surgeries, completing it all in 1997 when David was 32. He married and became stepfather to 3 children. But eventually, his strained relationship with his parents and depression about his brother's death-by-overdose in 2002 caught up to him. He shot himself in the head in 2004 at age 38.