Singer and actress Jennifer Lopez, who recently announced plans to launch her own beauty line, has spoken out in support of her nibling – who has created a short film about how art was a lifeline for them when coming out. She used the term, which is a gender-neutral alternative for a niece or nephew, when discussing her sister Leslie Lopez's child, Brendan Scholl (who is transgender and uses they/them pronouns).
Jennifer posted a short clip of the film, along with a to-camera introduction from herself, to Instagram, along with the caption: "Brendon is my nibling and this is their story. Draw With Me is a short film about accepting change and challenges with love knowing when we do everything is possible. Please enjoy the first 5 minutes of this incredible story. Stay tuned for the full documentary at film festivals worldwide and coming soon on VOD. A film by @ithakafilms @marcomaranghello @lyndalopez08."
During her introduction, the Hustlers star explained, "Draw With Me is a short film about a transgender youth and their journey of coming out to their family, and also engaging with their art to help them cope with the feelings they were having during this time."
She continued on to say, "The film is important and timely in its story and message, and can have a huge impact on those of us who watch and experience what Brendon and their family is going through in this time of acceptance and admission. It’s a story very close to my heart, because it was a family affair... because Brendon is my nibling."
Leslie appears in the film, discussing how she digested the news and helpfully explains, "You're talking about your identity as a person, sexual preference has to do with who you go to bed with and your [gender] identity is who you go to bed as." She and Brendon together tell the story of how she discovered their chest binder ("I told them the truth, it's a binder, it makes your chest look flat," says Brendon) in the laundry basket.
Brendon's other aunt, Jennifer's sister, Lynda Lopez, also appears on camera sharing her experience with her nibling's transition, as does Rob Scholl (Brendon's father). When talking about their lowest moment in the five-minute clip, Brendon says, "The darkest point was definitely when I wasn’t out to any of my teachers or my parents. I was worried about when I came out, that would be like the last straw, so to speak." The family then reflect upon the night that Brendon very sadly tried to take their own life.
After this, Leslie says, came a turning point, "When it finally hit me, like, 'Oh my God, my kid just trying to kill themself', it just hit me. When you finally get to the acceptance part, then you realise it’s not about you. This is about my child."
Speaking about their relationship with Jennifer, Brendon said, "I’m just hit with how lucky I am in terms of family and friends, When Jen made [an Instagram] post using the right pronouns [last July], it felt really nice to have a family member, in a very public way, show their support. It makes me appreciate things that other people will do for me and for anyone else who’s struggling."
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