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Beach club revokes transgendered woman's membership

READ MORE: Beach club revokes transgendered woman's membership

WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (WWAY) -- Changing from man to woman brings on another change: member to outcast. The Hanover Seaside Club is tight-lipped over allegations it would not renew a transgendered woman's membership.

"It was sad when they did it, and I'm sad that it's gone through like this, and I just wish that they would do the right thing and let me have my membership back," said Rachael Gieschen by phone as she vacationed in Yellowstone Park. Her quick comments reiterate why her attorney Michael Silverman is fighting to get her membership to the Hanover Seaside Club back.

"One of the things that struck me about Rachael's story is when she told me about her feelings for this club, and what she told me was, 'I love this club. I've been a member my whole life. It's been in my family. My children are still members,'" Silverman said.

Gieschen, who now lives in Raleigh, contacted Silverrman a year ago. He said Hanover Seaside Club sent Gieschen a letter saying members were uneasy about her transformation to a woman, particularly when it came to the restrooms.

"The clubs position has been that Rachael makes other people feel uncomfortable, and as a result don't want people to be there," Silverman said. "And they've been firm about their postion. So so far, they've been unwilling to reconsider."

According to Silverman, Gieschen's family helped found the private Wrightsville beach club on South Lumina Avenue. A friend from Greensboro, who's also been recognized by the Human Rights Coalition for his advocacy for the transgendered community says the situations been difficult on Gieschen.

"This really is not right to exclude her from this organization when her family has been so actively involved for so many years," David Parker said.

When we went to go find answers about the alleged revocation of Gieschen's membership, we were directed to the club's president, who over the phone said, "The club is not going to make any comment." Members and board members we ran in to, also refused to make a statement.

Gieschen and her lawyer are hoping they can avoid a lawsuit by coming to an agreement with the club. We were promised a phone call from the Hanover Seaside Club's attorney. Instead, the club's president called to say no comment.

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.


Who is trying to force their beliefs upon whom?

You better read the story again, pal. You basically have a man demanding to use the ladies' room. I'd say that's HIM forcing his wants on others.


While I abhor discrimination and definitely disagree with the club's decision, it is a private club and unfortunately she isn't a protected class to my knowledge. Very much a shame

More than one

I am one of R's children. We grew up in this club and were taught to respect our elders and the other members. Your article and follow up are incomplete and only share R's unhappiness that he feels he has been discriminated against. There are many many facets to this story which are not discussed, and despite my Father's example, I do not feel the need to discuss them here or in any other forum. These are people he has known his whole life, who have respected his "quirks" prior to his transition and have treated him as family. However, expecting the many members of the HSC, which include several family members and myself, to be completely open to his change, is somewhat unrealistic and extremely narcissistic. While yes, technically it is discriminatory, but there were multiple attempts to reach an agreement to satisfy all parties, and its ridiculous that he would treat these people in this manner. Its not how I was raised, and I would expect the person who helped raise me to set a better example. His actions have been extremely hurtful to myself and others, and I wish someone could respect our side. Just because we dont feel the need to advertise our feelings, doesnt mean they arent there. Please have some respect for my family and those who are affected by R's transition. There doesn't need to be an audience for our grief.

A grown up kid who is really hurt


Your "dad" is being unrealistic and narcissistic? How? Because he's got his real family and friends showing him that he is love unconditionally and supported? Better than what his family is doing quite frankly. People have rights to live as they are be where they want to be. Regardless of your bigotry EMBARRASSMENT and your cold heart toward a family member....I'm gay and I can remember a story my older brother told me once "Only I can call you a fag. Let someone else dare to do that." This is a true family (twisted as it is) but it's a real honest to God family. Take note from trailer trash like us and look at LOVE and FAMILY tradition rather your precious status.


Talk about judgement... You are right. I can't possibly love my dad and disapprove of his actions. You know everything. Everyone has the same experiences as you. Thanks for teaching me a lesson.


Would you have preferred that your parent would have committed suicide? It sure sounds like that.

The reason why people transition is not because of some perverted fetishism, but because lying to yourself endlessly erodes your willpower day by day until you can't take it anymore.

It might not be easy to see your parent try to find her true self, but it is much better than having her kill herself just so you can still play make believe that you are so moral and just.


I don't wish him dead or any ill will I just wish he would show respect for the FAMILY he CHOSE to have! However I do not have to justify myself to you or anyone else seeing as how no one can understand this specific situation as it pertains to me and my back OFF!

I'm sorry this is hard on

I'm sorry this is hard on you. And i am hurt you call this narcissistic. In almost every case when someone chooses to transition its because its come to life or death. 50% of us as surveyed by one website have attempted suicide by the age of 21. We often fight these feelings until its the brink of killing ourselves. Why? Because people tell us we are wrong. We are evil. That we are the cause of the deaths of soldiers in Iraq. Because we don't want to hurt the feelings of our families. Or our reputations. Those of us who manage not to have a family loose our parents and siblings because we don't want to hurt them. I haven't talked to my grandpa in years. I love him dearly. But after my suicide attempt I knew i had to change something. My grandpa is an old school racist. Hates gays not fond of non whites and all that. The type of grandpa that as you grow up you humor his beliefs because hes harmless and just to old to change. I got a call from my grandma and she told me she thinks im gay and that's why i don't talk to them any more. I told her i wish it was that easy. She begged me to tell her what the problem was. And while i told her i would call more I couldn't tell her because i didn't want to harm her or my grandpa.

You see while this is a medical condition. While advances come that prove and start to explain the intricacies of transsexualism. People don't understand. People refuse to take the time to understand. They don't research this before passing judgments. And because of that My roommate and I spend our nights on a suicide prevention site geared toward transsexual people trying to keep them alive.

Yes this is a selfish thing. As much as wanting to live and be happy is selfish. I hope one day you grow to understand the pain that your parent lived with instead of falling into the hole of hating them for hurting you because that was not their intention.

We all have to learn to get over ourselves

We are all who we are by God's design and we all have issues. It's the choices we make that will define our walk in life. There people everywhere who are hurting for a variety of reasons and we all learn to live with it. We all have to face the reality of what our actions will do to the ones we supposedly love. If I had so little respect for my family, I would have killed myself years ago, but I know that my children are more important to me than my own life and happiness, so I make my decisions for them.

Hard on you...

There are those that are indeed trapped int he wrong body and it's those that we feel for. What my sibling is saying is that there is nothing remotely female - not style, not intuition, not mannerisms, etc - and you will never convince that majority of our family. You are NOT the one being called narcissistic.

My heart does go out to the true transgenders that can't be open. It would be a horrid thing being trapped in the wrong body but the fact of the matter is, no one wanted to tell the whole story here. Only one sliver of one slice was told.

This isn't about one person against the big mean beach club, it just isn't. The behind story is a family that has been through hell and back, a family whose parent failed to protect them from harm after they were asked and begged not to go this route. You have to ask yourself how your own family would react in your hometown if you were to do this same thing?

We are hoping that R and his attorney will realize the harm this has caused and just let it die. To paraphrase another of my relations, headlines come and go .....We just hope they will let this die and not continue to seek the publicity......

You dont get it....

Those other pieces which have not been documented here are the reasons it is "narcississtic". You have not spent a lifetime as this person's child, therefore you do not understand my opinion. There is a way to transition while still maintaining respect for your family and friends. He has NO respect for us whatsoever, and has had a long history of behaving this way, prior to his transition. The lack of Respect is the issue, much more than his decision to change who he is.

When will we grow up?

Ok, this is what is keeping America in the Dark ages! Will we ever live in a world where one is truly able to be free? I am not a Transsexual or a homosexual, I’m not even a minority for that matter, but when will we people “as a whole” quit giving a damn how other people live their lives? I mean, so long as it does not infringed on my safety and safety of my family! I mean that is a “physical danger” aspect! Not a moral one.

What you do or how you live your life may not be what “my” idea of how things “should” be done, but my opinion does not and should not dictate law baste on my tastes. So a private club “I believe” can decide who they allow and who they don’t and not being a state sponsored organization and all they can chose members and deny members for what ever reason they want! Does not mean they should! They are discriminating against someone who presents no physical threat! They simply disapprove and that, that is the behavior that should "not" be tolerated.

But, in order for us to evolve as a people we have to become more tolerant. I mean its happening! 40 years ago it was the civil rights movement. A lot of people swore it off and remained raciest, but as the generation came up behind them and race relations start to get better and better and now we even have an African American President. So, though we may have a ways to go with race relations in the USA, we are and have been making progress.

20 years ago homosexuals got beat up and even beaten to death in some cases. Now, we have TV shows that address homosexuality and expose it to the point that, in most civilized places, people are more excepting and in most cases it goes unnoticed, however noticeable it may be. So again, we still have a ways to go on that issue as well, but hey…we are making progress!

Anyway, my point to all this is, this is jut another “thing” that people are just going to have to except some day, so why not just save us the 10/15 years and just except it! I think this person was discriminated against not just in the sense of a snicker or a stare, they were expelled by a club that they and their family had been apart of for generations. If this issue is not pushed, it’s only going to “delay” the inevitable. People will begin to live more open life styles as time goes on and each time one emerges, there is always resistance. But, the resistance is just a waste of time, because eventually, woman can vote, non whites can vote, gays can get married “in some states”. Marijuana is legal in California; the resistance is simply a waste of time!

We have to stop looking at how” we” as individuals chose to live our lives as the “Blue Print” for how we think everyone else should lives theirs! What you think is inappropriate may not be as in appropriative to someone else!

I think it’s possible! A wise person once said, “You can pray to that rock, you can worship that rock” that’s fine! Just don’t throw it at me and hit me in the head with it.

I’m going to go pray to Jesus, but if you think that rock is going save you and make you a better person, hey man, we are cool. I got my beliefs you have yours. Don’t mean we can not be friends. Sexuality, Race, Gender, and faith have to stop being dividing factor in our society in the modern human existence. So we have to fight this type of discrimination.

Anyway, I was glad to see this type of “thing” make the news, in order to raise the awareness that discrimination, by any means, is pretty bad! No matter how hard you fight it, change is going to come; we have proven that throughout many ages. So ……RELAX! No one wants to take your gun away!


they have made a HUGE mistake here and the OWNERSHIP of the Club might change the VERY LEAST the clubs Officer Insurance is going to take a HUGE hit!

The HSC is 'owned' by the

The HSC is 'owned' by the members....