Two Deeply Personal Stories from This Week


“At unexpected points in life, everyone gets waylaid by the colossal force of recollection.”
–Mary Karr, The Art of Memoir

Every day, millions of people share their most intimate thoughts, stories, and memories on a site — and the results can be powerful. Here are two pieces I read this week and (highly!) recommend:

“Seven Years Old, Stealth, and Scared”

Those who follow our Editors’ Picks on Freshly Pressed may recognize the work of gendermom, the blog of Marlo Mack (a pseudonym) who is navigating life in the United States as the mother of a transgender daughter, “M.” Her latest post is honest, brave, and heartbreaking, about her daughter’s nervousness in going back to school, and how a mother balances the desire to protect her child from cruelty while not making her feel she must be “stealth”:

I have been so focused on helping her maintain her privacy, on telling her, again and again, that only SHE gets to decide who “knows,” that I think I’ve made her afraid. I wanted her to feel like she was in control. And I wanted to protect her from people who are cruel. But somewhere along the line, things went sideways.

School starts tomorrow. And yesterday, out of the blue, my seven-year-old said, “Mama, I want to go to a school with only transgender kids.”

“Thanks for Reading”

Israel Gutierrez is a reporter for ESPN who last week publicly shared his story of coming out, prior to his September 12 wedding:

“Starting in my early teens until somewhere in my late 20s, I’d blow out my birthday candles with the same wish: ‘Please don’t let me be gay.’”

Gutierrez has been out to friends and family for more than six years, but personal testimonials like his can serve as comfort and inspiration for others:

“More than anything, I just want to tell my story. It’s probably going to feel like too much information to some of you. But it’s the best way I know to explain what life can be like for conflicted, confused gay men and women everywhere.”

Everyone has a story to share, and we’re looking forward to reading more. For additional inspiration, check out some of our posts on memoir writing and personal reflection, or browse the personal essay tag in the Reader.

Filed under: Admin Bar, Community,, Writing

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