Man Who Came Out As Trans Woman At 62 Recalls A Lifetime Of Hardships
A 64-year-old man who now lives as a woman named Mary Elizabeth Power has opened up about the decision to become transgender and what it all meant.
Mary, who is now retired and living in Texas, was raised Southern Baptist, and her father was a Southern Baptist minister.
She was 4 when she first tried her sister’s dress on, but when her father caught and punished her for it, she got to learn that in this family it was ‘not okay for boys to wear dresses’.
In an interview for Unilad, Mary recalled how difficult it was for her not knowing how to express even to herself what she truly felt inside. She knew she wasn’t gay because she liked girls but still had a feeling she ‘never really fit in’.
At the age of 19, while in college, Mary decided to get married to a woman and started a family.
They welcomed ‘three wonderful children’, but eventually got divorced when Mary was around 30.
And this is when Mary started doubting she could ‘continue to ignore the truth’ about who she really wanted to be, so she called a transgender affirmation line she saw in the paper, which read, ‘Do you feel like you’re in the wrong body? Call and let’s talk.’
The operator convinced Mary to attend a support meeting, and this is when Mary went out in public dressed in women’s clothes for the first time.
This helped Mary ‘really admit to [herself] that [she] was trans’, but she still felt she ‘didn’t have the guts to continue’, and went on to remarry before divorcing again a few years on.
“For the longest time after I accepted myself, I’d try to deny it. I was brought up Southern Baptist so it was sinful. I discovered role-playing games and later video games where I could ‘pretend’ to be a woman, and still feel safe.
I would tell people who saw my avatars that I just enjoyed looking at a pretty girl while playing. All the while still occasionally dressing in secret.”
At 55, she moved to Texas to live with her first-born daughter and be closer to her other children and grandchildren. She said her daughter accepted her for her choice and even encouraged her to go out in public wearing women’s clothes.
At 62, Mary made the choice to ‘officially start living full time as a woman’.
Mary then legally changed her name and gender and had them both amended in her birth certificate. Later on, she told her family back home about her transition, but her siblings ‘refused to accept it’.
When it comes to others who may be having a hard time with their identity, however, Mary has advised everyone to be themselves, saying:
“Don’t let anyone tell you who or what you are.”
“When you find yourself falling off a cliff, you might as well try to learn to fly.”
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