An inspirational story of accepting and embracing two trans people in a family--a family who shows what's possible when you "lead with love."
All Amanda Jetté Knox ever wanted was to enjoy a stable life. She never knew her biological father, and while her mother and stepfather were loving parents, the situation was sometimes chaotic. At school, she was bullied mercilessly, and at the age of fourteen, she entered a counselling program for alcohol addiction and was successful.
While still a teenager, she met the love of her life. They were wed at 20, and the first of three children followed shortly. Jetté Knox finally had the stability she craved--or so it seemed. Their middle child struggled with depression and avoided school. The author was unprepared when the child she knew as her son came out as transgender at the age of eleven. Shocked, but knowing how important it was to support her daughter, Jetté Knox became an ardent advocate for trans rights.
But the story wasn't over. For many years, the author had coped with her spouse's moodiness, but that chronic unhappiness was taking a toll on their marriage. A little over a year after their child came out, her partner also came out as transgender. Knowing better than most what would lie ahead, Jetté Knox searched for positive examples of marriages surviving transition. When she found no role models, she determined that her family would become one.
The shift was challenging, but slowly the family members noticed that they were becoming happier and more united. Told with remarkable candour and humour, and full of insight into the challenges faced by trans people, Love Lives Here is a beautiful story of transition, frustration, support, acceptance, and, of course, love.
AMANDA JETTÉ KNOX is an award-winning writer, human rights advocate, and public speaker. She is the recipient of the 2014 Joan Gullen Journalism Award for Media Excellence in small print. Her work, and her family's journey so far, has been featured on CBC, The Globe and Mail, Chatelaine, Upworthy, Buzzfeed, Us Weekly, Uproxx, Ottawa Family Living, The Today Show, and various other national and international publications, podcasts, and media outlets. She continues to write for her blog, The Maven of Mayhem.
FINALIST for the 2020 Ottawa Book Awards
One of CBC's “21 books by Canadian women to read right now”
Praise for Love Lives Here:
“. . . a success both through strong writing and the crackling feeling on the page that she genuinely loves the shit out of her trans family.”
“This sweet and positive account of a family facing obstacles and growing closer together is inspiring.”
“Love Lives Here is an emotionally raw, often funny book that leaves the reader wanting to be Amanda Jetté Knox’s best friend. It’s the story of how people tried to push her down, and will strike a chord with anyone who’s ever been bullied. And that’s a lot of us!”
“I read Love Lives Here in one sitting, or more accurately in one day. There were several times I had to walk away to cry and collect myself, but inevitably I was pulled back in because I had to know what would happen next. Amanda tells a story about how to deeply love your family, but more importantly, she shows us how we all have to learn to love ourselves before we can fully show up for others. That’s a lesson we should all learn.”
—Debi Jackson, parent and trans youth advocate
“. . . an inspirational road map for others living through similar situations.”