In 2011, Marie Claire magazine published a profile of Janet Mock
in which she stepped forward for the first time as a trans woman.
Those twenty-three hundred words were life-altering for the
People.com editor, turning her into an influential and outspoken
public figure and a desperately needed voice for an often
voiceless community. In these pages, she offers a bold and
inspiring perspective on being young, multicultural, economically
challenged, and transgender in America.
Welcomed into the world as her parents’ firstborn son, Mock
decided early on that she would be her own person—no matter what.
She struggled as the smart, determined child in a deeply loving
yet ill-equipped family that lacked the money, education, and
resources necessary to help her thrive. Mock navigated her way
through her teen years without parental guidance, but luckily,
with the support of a few close friends and mentors, she emerged
much stronger, ready to take on—and maybe even change—the world.
This powerful memoir follows Mock’s quest for identity, from an
early, unwavering conviction about her gender to a turbulent
adolescence in Honolulu that saw her transitioning during the
tender years of high school, self-medicating with hormones at
fifteen, and flying across the world alone for sex reassignment
surgery at just eighteen. With unflinching honesty, Mock uses her
own experience to impart vital insight about the unique
challenges and vulnerabilities of trans youth and brave girls
Despite the hurdles, Mock received a scholarship to college and
moved to New York City, where she earned a master’s degree,
enjoyed the success of an enviable career, and told no one about
her past. She remained deeply guarded until she fell for a man
who called her the woman of his dreams. Love fortified her with
the strength to finally tell her story, enabling her to embody
the undeniable power of testimony and become a fierce advocate
for a marginalized and misunderstood community. A profound
statement of affirmation from a courageous woman, Redefining
Realness provides a whole new outlook on what it means to be a
woman today, and shows as never before how to be authentic,
unapologetic, and wholly yourself.