Chaz Bono and girlfriend Jennifer Elia. (David Livingston/Getty Images)

Once Bono told Cher that he was going to transition from female to male, the two tried counseling, which failed. “I just realized that she was really having a hard time with all of this,” he said. “The hard thing for my mom, I think, is that because she’s a public figure and because she has this personality of kind of being so cool about stuff and progressive, people forget that she’s a parent.”

The two didn’t speak for months. In an interview for the documentary, “Becoming Chaz,” Cher said she was nervous about not recognizing her child. “At some point I’m going have to start calling her him. At some point I guess I will, but it just doesn’t seem comfortable yet,” Cher said. But Bono told Oprah his mother is “moving in the right direction.” She sent him a text that said “Chaz” instead of his former nickname. “I’m proud of her for dealing with this and really making an effort,” Bono said.

As we previously reported, Bono has documented his transition in a new book and a documentary, “Becoming Chaz,” which premieres tonight on Oprah’s OWN network.

You can read an excerpt from Bono’s book, “Transition,” at Oprah’s Web site. Watch a clip from the interview below and you can watch Cher discuss Bono’s sex change here.