A grandmother of a trans woman has written an open letter to Elliot Page, thanking him for coming out and helping others to do the same.
Maryann Durmer, 75, says Elliot has helped her granddaughter to ‘live openly with freedom’ by using his ‘fame and visibility to help other people’.
The 75-year-old, who describes herself as a ‘white, heterosexual cisgender woman who was raised in an authoritarian home’ wrote the heartfelt letter to her granddaughter for the Huffington Post.
In it, she writes: ‘Elliot Page recently announced that he is transgender, and as the grandmother of a transgender young woman, I am grateful that he did.’
The essay, which was published five months after her 22-year-old granddaughter came out as trans, continues: ‘When I heard the news, I texted her: “I talked to your dad last night. I’m so happy you came out, and I support you 100 per cent. I just wanted to stop by and tell you I love you. If there’s anything I can do to help you, I’m here.”’
Maryann added that she had wondered for six months whether her granddaughter was transitioning, and it helped her to ‘rethink my biases and understanding of sexuality and gender.’
She continued: ‘When it’s your grandchild who is transgender, it’s complicated. I worry that I may do or say something wrong by accident.
‘Saying a new name after knowing a person for 20-plus years isn’t easy. It’s not just about my granddaughter changing. It’s also that I have no “how-to” manual for processing my memories of my former grandson. All I know is that I love my granddaughter.’
Maryann says as well as celebrities like Elliot leading the way, she has also read books and watched films to help understand her granddaughter’s experience better.
She added that she struggles with accidentally using her granddaughter’s dead name but is ‘committed to doing everything I can to embrace her as the beautiful young woman she is (including apologising if I do make a mistake)’ to make the transition easier.
The heartfelt essay concluded: ‘To my granddaughter, I say: Thank you for teaching me the value of living an authentic life. I am proud to be your grandmother.
‘And as my thoughts and heart transition to embrace this new you, please know one thing isn’t changing ― I love you.’
Elliot came out publicly at the start of December, telling fans: ‘Hi friends, I want to share with you that I am trans, my pronouns are he/they and my name is Elliot.
‘I feel lucky to be writing this. To be here. To have arrived at this place in my life.’
Credit: Original article published here.