When a Man Becomes a Woman and He’s Not Pretty

The House Of Bethan

The other day Ads came into the Sanctuary to discover me sitting on the carpet (next to the scaffolding mirror), studying my phone with laser beam focus.

“What are you doing babe?” he inquired, perching on the end of the bed.

“I’m watching a video that someone has posted on Facebook,” I murmured back. I went back to the start of the video and passed the phone to Ads. Nodded at the screen, inviting him to press play.

“Watch it.”

When I said “watch it” there was a tone to my voice that suggested that this video did not deserve a half hearted viewer. There was to be none of the polite yet pained tolerance that I display when looking through my mum’s 200,000 holiday snaps.

Ads knew that this “Watch It” was important.

Something intrinsic to our very us-ness hinged on it.

He pressed play.

The video began.

I narrowed my eyes, studied his face, determined to notice if his attention flickered.

It didn’t.

He did




When the video ended, he passed the phone back.

“Well?” I said.

“Well – I totally get what he’s on about. When you made us all dress up as lady-boys at your birthday party, I hated it. It is one thing dressing up as a woman, but no one wants to look horrible, do they?”

“So you really get what he is talking about?” Delight was doing cartwheels over and over in my heart. “You get what he’s realised?”


Ads passed The Test with flying colours. Am not sure quite what the test was, but he got an A+. Not only did he watch, but he listened and he heard. And he had a lady-boy experience to back up his statements. I think we should all show this video to our boys. If you haven’t seen Dustin Hoffman’s interview when he recounts his experiences of playing a woman in the film Tootsie, then here it is …


3 thoughts on “When a Man Becomes a Woman and He’s Not Pretty

  1. Powerful stuff! I wanted to cry with him. But, I am afraid I am guilty of sometimes regarding men in the same light (or used to). I really enjoy seeing people’s profiles on blogs but also like the anonymity of a blog; the idea that personality can prevail without attachment to a face. ( I love your face! But I would love your words without your face too xox; I am sure) On the subject of gender, I thought this was a brilliant coup http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/books/news/i-turned-down-robert-galbraith-editor-admits-passing-on-novel-that-turned-out-to-be-by-jk-rowling-8708316.html

    • Thanks for this link Gallivanta. I sat and read it this morning as the children were getting ready for school, then time ran out and I didn’t get a chance to reply.

      When watching Dustin Hoffman in that interview and reading the independent article, the word that kept coming to me was “glamour”. If you look up the word on Wiki it says, “A glamour originally was a term applied to a magical-occult spell cast on somebody to make them believe that something that the spell caster wished them to believe.”

      In the interview Dustin suddenly realised he’d been under the spell of “glamorous” women and because of that had missed out on some amazing, worthwhile, brilliant individuals. The publishers in the article you posted, had they known the book was written by JK, would have been swayed by the “glamour” of what her name suggests; big bucks and big publicity.

      Without the glamour of a “face” or a “name”, the book was cast aside.

      Essentially the publishing, food, beauty and media industries are all practising what was once considered witchcraft. I wonder if we threw one of those organisations into a river to test them for sorcery, if they’d sink?

      • Oh, interesting analysis! Interestingly, we like to put the media on trial for other naughty things they do but no one seems to want to try them for witchcraft; but wouldn’t I like to know if they would sink or swim! Thanks for telling me the original meaning of a glamour; I am bewitched by this interpretation 😉

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