"All Caitlyn. Totally out." It's the phrase that completely encapsulates the latest episode of I Am Cait as Caitlyn Jenner prepares for her highly anticipated debut at the 2015 ESPY Awards.
"It's important that I get it right." Caitlyn is all nerves when it comes to the speech she's to make for receiving the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. Former recipients have been Muhammad Ali, Nelson Mandela, Robin Roberts, and now, Caitlyn will be receiving the honor. Her fear of being completely exposed in front of peers is tripled because she'll be speaking in front of her family, whose opinion she respects the most.
However, the night couldn't go better. Her glam squad helps her transform, and she dons a beautiful gown tailored by Donatella Versace. Caitlyn, in order to control the narrative and her story for the evening, avoids the red carpet and any interviews. She enters the venue right before the commercial break and made her debut without any fuss. In the audience, Caitlyn's mother, sisters, and children all look on to support her in what is now considered to be a very historical moment.
Another focal point of last night's episode deals with Caitlyn's identity in a more legal sense. When applying to a new golf club, she insists on putting Bruce down as her name. "I want to delay that," she explains to her friend and assistant. Cait gets flustered quickly and is obviously fearful of what the reaction will be by club members. "To the club...it's a different deal." She hasn't had to deal with social situations much so far with people that have no familial connection to her. Because of the conservative nature of the club, Cait doesn't want to ruffle any feathers just yet.
When discussing with her friend Candis Cayne, Candis is concrete in her opinion about what Cait should do. "You can't play both sides of the fence anymore. You're beyond that." Through Candis' eyes -- and those of many others within the trans community -- your name is what helps bring the transition full circle.
Caitlyn and Candis get a chance to visit a support group for gender non-conforming youth run by a regular guest of the show and friend, Chandi Moore. The group, Blush, is an opportunity for these young people to connect and receive the support they might not be getting at home. This week's discussion focuses on the legal troubles trans youth can face and how difficult it can be for them to move on to the next step. We hear about how access to legal documents for identity change is not a smooth process. "A court date can take up to about a year," Cait is told.
When pulled over by the police or at regular traffic stops, not having a form of ID that matches who you are can be troubling. A simple traffic violation can turn into mockery. When legal complaints are filed, they rarely go anywhere.
Cait, aware of her status and privilege, wants to set an example and hopefully make changes for the next generation. After the back and forth of being recognized as Bruce or Caitlyn on documents, she finally takes action on legally changing her name and identity.
As we've seen with this series and, especially, this episode, there are many aspects to transitioning that the general public just doesn't know or understand. The troubles faced by the transgender community are mainly swept under the rug in society. However, there is a hope that, with the level of activism and increasing visibility, that will change as time moves forward. What have you learned watching I Am Cait? There is only one episode left! Tune in next week as PopWrapped says "See you later" to the series of the summer.