Blog Post

From Don to Dawn and Back to Don

Commentary by Susan Brinkmann, OCDS

An ABC news editor who very publicly "changed" his gender from male to female earlier this year decided to change back after experiencing a seizure that caused him to forget why he had done so.

The Daily Mail is reporting that Don Ennis of ABC News and a father of three announced in May of 2013 that he had been fighting a seven-year battle with his gender identity and now wanted to be known as a woman. He separated from his wife of 17 years and began living as a woman named Dawn.

However, three months later, he was rushed to the hospital complaining that he was experiencing a loss of memory and feared he was having a seizure. He accused his wife of dressing him up as woman and giving him fake ID's with the name "Dawn" on it.

“I accused my wife of playing some kind of cruel joke, dressing me up in a wig and bra and making fake ID’s with the name ‘Dawn’ on it. Seriously,” Ennis wrote in a memo he posted to the newsroom bulletin board last Friday, according to the New York Post.

He claims that his attack of amnesia, described as transient global amnesia, has since worn off and he is now convinced that he's a man.

“Fortunately, my memories of the last 14 years have since returned. But what did not return was my identity as Dawn,” Ennis wrote in the memo.

“I am writing to let you know I’m changing my name . . . to Don Ennis. That will be my name again, now and forever. And it appears I’m not transgender after all.

“I have retained the much different mind-set I had in 1999: I am now totally, completely, unabashedly male in my mind, despite my physical attributes,” he said, referring to his hormone-induced breasts.

“I’m asking all of you who accepted me as a transgender to now understand: I was misdiagnosed. I am already using the men’s room and dressing accordingly,” he noted.

“It’s so odd to be experiencing this from the other side; as recently as last Friday, I felt I was indeed a woman, in my mind, body and soul."

He goes on to say that even though he won't be wearing a wig, makeup and skirts anymore, he will remain a stalwart supporter of "diversity" and other LGBT issues.

As the Post reports, Ennis previously told friends his sexual confusion may have been caused early in life when his mother gave him female hormones to keep him looking young enough to prolong his acting career. However, the hormones made him develop breasts and caused him to start thinking he was supposed to be a woman.

He has since reconciled with his wife, who was said to have been very supportive of his sex change.

Now he is pleading with friends and colleagues not to think he reverted back to being male because there was anything wrong with switching sex.

"The new change I'm revealing to you today did not arise because I couldn't hack it, or people would accept the new/real/female "me", or I had trouble finding shoes that fit (Oh, I found plenty, more than I could afford)," he wrote in the e-mail.

Instead, he's calling his stint into womanhood "a tremendous gift” which he hopes will "make it easier for the next person to transition at ABC."

According to the International Business Times, Ennis is now shopping a book deal about his experience.

Aside from being a story about a man in dire need of counseling, attempts to put a positive spin on this bizarre tale by calling it "tolerance for diversity" only proves that the moral fabric of this county is seriously unraveling.

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