Customer Reviews for

Transition: Becoming Who I Was Always Meant to Be

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

8 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

Gender, Sexuality, Identity and Family

Bono, Chaz. "Transition: The Story of How I Became a Man", Dutton, 2011.

Gender, Sexuality, Identity and Family

Amos Lassen

For those you who have been asleep for the last few years, Chastity Bono is now Chaz and in "Transition" she tells us about her struggle ...
Bono, Chaz. "Transition: The Story of How I Became a Man", Dutton, 2011.

Gender, Sexuality, Identity and Family

Amos Lassen

For those you who have been asleep for the last few years, Chastity Bono is now Chaz and in "Transition" she tells us about her struggle of forty years to make his gender and his body one and the same. The decision to transition from female to male was not once that happened suddenly-Chaz had been struggling with who he really was. We first met Chaz as Chastity, the daughter of Sonny and Cher Bono and she had fame thrust upon her. Years later there was a different kind of fame-as an LGBT activist and when she (he) publicly came out, we all noticed, along with the rest of the world.
Chaz worked with two national organizations and wrote two books and became a household name-this time not because of his mother but because of what he stood for. Chaz quickly became a high profile transgender person-probably the most famous one ever but he maintained a private life and we did not hear very much until the decision was announced that he would undergo gender reassignment surgery and now he lets us into his life.
Having a similar situation in my own family, I have anxiously awaited the publication of "Transition" and yes, it answers many of my own questions.
The first half of the book is devoted to the decision to transition, from Chaz's childhood and playing boys' sports, those years in the twenties when so many of us search for who we are and his battles with drug addiction and his sobriety. In Part Two, Chaz shares the actual transition with us through pictures and prose and the diary he kept as the process began and then took place. We get a day-by-day record of the process.
I think it is very difficult to struggle with oneself for forty years and those of us who have struggled know how painful it can be and I am not speaking just of changing one's sex. As gay people we struggle all of the time and this probably because that struggle is forced upon us by those who see us as less than human. I personally cannot imagine what the struggle would be like to realize that one is born into the wrong gender. I also do not know how such a high profile person as Chaz Bono was able to keep so much private for so long.
There are four major themes in Chaz's book-identity, sexuality, gender and friends and family. Bit above these is an overriding theme and that is how keeping things within can be a shattering experience. Chaz owes us nothing but he gives us the gift of letting us know him. If any community is not understood, it is the transgender community and Chaz lets us know so much about it through his own experiences and journey.
After closing the book, I sat back with mouth agape, thinking that here is the book I have waited so long to read. I cannot praise it highly enough not only for what is says and how it is written but for what it does. We all owe Chaz Bono a hearty slap on the back and a real man-to-man handshake. He has gone where others dare not and he does it with style.
Starting May 10 on the OWN network you can see the documentary of Chaz's transition.

posted by amosl on May 9, 2011

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review

Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

Not what it claims to be

For being a book titled Transition, I find it shocking that Chaz Bono only dedicated the last two chapters of his book to discuss the physical aspects of transitioning (hormone injections and top surgery). The entire work leading up to it, he talked about growing up neg...
For being a book titled Transition, I find it shocking that Chaz Bono only dedicated the last two chapters of his book to discuss the physical aspects of transitioning (hormone injections and top surgery). The entire work leading up to it, he talked about growing up neglected by Sonny and Cher, his mentally abusive nanny Helen and his addiction to pain killers. I'm not trying to belittle Chaz's struggle, however, I feel that his work would be more helpful to people considering transitioning and their families if he dedicated more of his book to the actual process, rather than only the decades of discomfort he felt. This was not at all what I was hoping to get out of this work.

posted by BKPride on May 21, 2011

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  • Posted May 9, 2011

    Gender, Sexuality, Identity and Family

    Bono, Chaz. "Transition: The Story of How I Became a Man", Dutton, 2011.

    Gender, Sexuality, Identity and Family

    Amos Lassen

    For those you who have been asleep for the last few years, Chastity Bono is now Chaz and in "Transition" she tells us about her struggle of forty years to make his gender and his body one and the same. The decision to transition from female to male was not once that happened suddenly-Chaz had been struggling with who he really was. We first met Chaz as Chastity, the daughter of Sonny and Cher Bono and she had fame thrust upon her. Years later there was a different kind of fame-as an LGBT activist and when she (he) publicly came out, we all noticed, along with the rest of the world.
    Chaz worked with two national organizations and wrote two books and became a household name-this time not because of his mother but because of what he stood for. Chaz quickly became a high profile transgender person-probably the most famous one ever but he maintained a private life and we did not hear very much until the decision was announced that he would undergo gender reassignment surgery and now he lets us into his life.
    Having a similar situation in my own family, I have anxiously awaited the publication of "Transition" and yes, it answers many of my own questions.
    The first half of the book is devoted to the decision to transition, from Chaz's childhood and playing boys' sports, those years in the twenties when so many of us search for who we are and his battles with drug addiction and his sobriety. In Part Two, Chaz shares the actual transition with us through pictures and prose and the diary he kept as the process began and then took place. We get a day-by-day record of the process.
    I think it is very difficult to struggle with oneself for forty years and those of us who have struggled know how painful it can be and I am not speaking just of changing one's sex. As gay people we struggle all of the time and this probably because that struggle is forced upon us by those who see us as less than human. I personally cannot imagine what the struggle would be like to realize that one is born into the wrong gender. I also do not know how such a high profile person as Chaz Bono was able to keep so much private for so long.
    There are four major themes in Chaz's book-identity, sexuality, gender and friends and family. Bit above these is an overriding theme and that is how keeping things within can be a shattering experience. Chaz owes us nothing but he gives us the gift of letting us know him. If any community is not understood, it is the transgender community and Chaz lets us know so much about it through his own experiences and journey.
    After closing the book, I sat back with mouth agape, thinking that here is the book I have waited so long to read. I cannot praise it highly enough not only for what is says and how it is written but for what it does. We all owe Chaz Bono a hearty slap on the back and a real man-to-man handshake. He has gone where others dare not and he does it with style.
    Starting May 10 on the OWN network you can see the documentary of Chaz's transition.

    8 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 6, 2011

    Really surprised!

    I was surprised at how well the book was written and how the story starts at childhood through the transition. I would recommend this book!

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 24, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Good read

    I enjoyed the story which Chaz tells of beginning his life as a female, feeling out of place with his sexuality for so many years, and then transitioning to a man. I didn't see his appearance on "Celebrity Fit Club" or his documentary on OWN but I do remember the little angelic, blond girl hoisted into her father's arms on "The Sonny and Cher Show." The bravery it took to come out as a lesbian, and later as transgender is something to be commended. Some negative reviews have noted that only a few chapters contain information on the actual process of physically transitioning from female to male, making the title misleading. I look at the title as the transition which has taken place over Chaz's entire life, leading him to the point his is today--as a man who is happy with his gender. A touching story in parts, particularly with Chaz's relationships with women and specifically with his mother, Cher.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 21, 2011

    Not what it claims to be

    For being a book titled Transition, I find it shocking that Chaz Bono only dedicated the last two chapters of his book to discuss the physical aspects of transitioning (hormone injections and top surgery). The entire work leading up to it, he talked about growing up neglected by Sonny and Cher, his mentally abusive nanny Helen and his addiction to pain killers. I'm not trying to belittle Chaz's struggle, however, I feel that his work would be more helpful to people considering transitioning and their families if he dedicated more of his book to the actual process, rather than only the decades of discomfort he felt. This was not at all what I was hoping to get out of this work.

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2012

    wow... refund please

    This book was the rambling essay of a poor little rich girl. I thought I would walk away from this book with some sort of understanding. Instead I found myself saying "big deal!"

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 22, 2011

    LOVED IT!

    This book was great from beginning to end. Very insiteful and well written.

    Dear Anonymous - If you have not read the book you should not be leaving a comment. This is not a subject opinion board, but a BOOK REVIEW.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 30, 2013

    I am more than half way through this book and I find that Chaz r

    I am more than half way through this book and I find that Chaz rambles on and on about how she had such a tough time coming out to her family. Well so have many other gay people. So far this book is all about porr misunderstood me. And a way to complain about her mother. And I say "her" and not him, because that is what she is, females, born with a uterus and ovaries. She writes about her life and how everyone else controlled her. Now that she transitioned she is in control of her life so that makes her a man? I think not. This is one confused individual. I'd like to know how SHE feels in another 20 years.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2012

    All Of Us

    The book was well written, heart breaking at times. I was able to relate well to the "not fitting societies mold". Although I am not transgender or gay, I am profoundly hysically disabled. The words in this book were spoken from the heart.it left me with 2 questions: Are any of us better than another? And why is it we can not just accept people for who they are? Chaz had to find a lot of strength to write this book, I am glad I read it.

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  • Posted November 2, 2011

    highly recommened

    I have a female to male transexual 25 year old son. He, Like Chaz is intelligent and succesful. In fact he is a therapist that only deals with the glbt community. Chaz's book was a great read on the comparision level. It was also a great read by a good writer. I recommend it to anyone, espicially those who would like an understanding of this alternative lifestyle.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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    Posted June 18, 2011

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