Cher’s offspring Chaz Bono is officially a man after he changed his name and gender in court yesterday.
Bono, who was born a girl named Chastity, is now legally recognised as a male, a year after undergoing a sex change.
The 41-year-old, whose father was the late singer and politician Sonny Bono, beamed with happiness as he left Santa Monica courthouse.
Kristina Wertz of the Transgender Law Center, who represented Bono is court, said: ‘Chaz couldn’t be happier
‘This is an important step in his transition and will allow him to change a variety of his identity documents to show who he truly is.’
Bono started undergoing gender-reassignment surgery in March 2009 – soon after turning 40.
In an interview last year, he said undergoing the surgery was ‘the best decision I’ve ever made’.
He said: ‘I feel so much more comfortable than I’ve ever been.
‘I’ve felt male as far back as I can remember. Life is short and life is precious. This is who I am. I need to finally be who I am.’
He explained that the entire transition from female to male will take about 4 to 5 years.
So far, his breasts have been removed and he has received hormone treatments to deepen his voice. And to his delight, he now has to shave his face.
Bono came out as a lesbian at age 18, when he was studying at New York University.
While Sonny – who died in a skiing accident in 1998 – was more accepting, Cher reacted badly.
Cher has admitted: ‘I flipped out. I’d always had this idea that she would get married and have a family.’
Distraught by his mother’s reaction, Chaz abandoned his studies to attempt a rock career.
Chaz’s sexuality was announced to the world in an American newspaper in 1990.
Five years later he appeared on the front cover of gay magazine The Advocate, describing himself as ‘out at last’, and became a vocal advocate of gay and transgendered rights.
Chaz lives in Los Angeles with his girlfriend of 4 years, Jennifer Ella.
Here are clips from the 1st interview Chaz gave after “coming out” as a man last October, to Entertainment Tonight’s Mary Hart:
Here’s a clip of Chaz giving a short speech the Transgender Day of Remembrance L.A., on November 20, 2009:
[HT: proofreader Laura Loo and reader yor bro ken; 1st and 2nd photos via The Daily Mail]