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In 1990, when Michelle Lynne Kosilek was known as Robert, a verbal disagreement ended with her wife throwing boiling water at her, followed by an attempt to stab her with a large knife.
Suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder after a lifetime of physical and sexual abuse, the author went into what is known as a fugue, or dissociative state, strangling her wife. Of all the people in the world, the one person who should have known what effect her actions might have had on the author was the woman who tragically died that day. She was not only the author’s wife, she was the author’s psychotherapist, a woman whose prescription for the author’s substance abuse and Gender Identity Disorder was to talk the author out of a residential treatment center and into her bed. Desperately lonely for love, the author complied. She wanted to believe that being loved would make her forget that her body was a prison.
Devastated by the fact that she had taken a life in a blackout, the author tried twice to end her own, her failed attempts culminating in a decision to stop denying her true gender. She changed her name to Michelle while awaiting trial and began an epic moral and legal battle that lasted twenty years, a battle that resulted in the Massachusetts Dept. of Correction using an illegally-employed lawyer to engineer a denial of treatment for GID that cost the taxpayers over a million dollars in legal fees to deny a surgical procedure that their own doctors insisted was medically necessary, and which the author had offered to pay for herself while she was awaiting trial. There are over 600 women just like her in men’s prisons in the United States. Most are getting no medical care, despite a federal regulation that mandates treatment for GID.