In April 2012 I made a decision that would change my life. It wasn’t a decision that I took lightly, it had afterall taken twenty seven years to make at that time and it was one that even now, three years later, I am still surprised that I took. It was a decision brought on my disappointments following relationships and various other aspects of my life. It was a decision to change sex, a process I started on July 2nd 2012.
Firstly, as has become tradition in my blog entries, below is a song…..
So let’s start this blog entry with a picture and it’s quite a odd picture in many ways and it still feels weird looking back on it. Below is a picture of me from late June 2012 following a friend’s 18th birthday party (I knew her from football, hence the age gap of nine years). I hadn’t slept during the night and took a picture to show what toll a 18th birthday party takes on a 27 year old.
This is also the penultimate picture that was taken of me before I started changing gender.
It’s been a strange three years and as the final part of the process approaches, I am constantly left reflecting on various aspects of my life both before I “came out” (for lack of better words), the period of my life where I started telling friends on a regular basis, and indeed the gradual body changes.
For me the biggest change, in the non-physical sense, has been the urge to be more adventurous with what I do in my spare time. I have previously had several ambitions and things that I wanted to try, but I never imagined that I would do any of them really.
I have taking up training to be a professional wrestler, I got my first passport and started going abroad on a semi-regular basis, I even went deep-sea diving in Ibiza, which was amazing.
I think my desire to do new things also comes from the fact I turned 30 last September. I pretty much wasted my 20s so am trying to play a bit of catch up really. Don’t get me wrong, I think I still have a lot of time in which to do things that I want to do, I am still relatively young afterall, but it just feels more hurried because I’m in a rush.
Then again, much like my clothing, I am saying the more drastic things for when the process is fully over. I think only two friends have ever seen me in a dress and that’s not going to change until everything is over and done with. I still have quite a few issues with the confidence and I do still intend to have various surgeries on my face to look more female in appearance once everything else is over and done with.
Speaking of my appearance, although I don’t see that much of a change when I look at my face in the mirror every day, when I look back on my previous profile pictures from the last I can see the facial changes. It seems weird looking at it in many ways because as I say, when I look in the mirror I can’t see that I look any different, but I do compared to three years ago.
So before I get onto the blog entry that I posted on the day of “coming out” to friends three years ago, I just wanted to take a moment to thank those of you that have accepted me into your life over the past three years. That ranges from new colleagues at various jobs, the friends I met at ice hockey and attending PCW, and those that I have recently met at Lincoln Fight Factory Wrestling and Academy.
However, the biggest thanks comes to those that have stayed friends with me after I told them. You could have easily have all dumped me as a friend, afterall, with the majority I had effectively lied to you for quite sometime, but again, I do appreciate those that stuck with me through it
So here it is, the blog entry I posted on July 2nd 2012 on another blogging site, revealing all to the world and talking about what had lead my to the decision is more details……
10,156 Days of Frustration Later – The End of Nathan Jackson
Please note that this blog contains a LOT of personal details and thoughts (most of which I have never shared with anyone, not even my closest friends), thoughts on transsexualism and one of the most graphic videos you will EVER see. If you are uncomfortable with this then I would suggest closing this page now.
I broke this news to my friends on Facebook and followers on Twitter earlier, but for those who don’t follow me on either I would like to announce that I am to have a sex change. Yes, that is right, your eyes do not deceive you, I have the intention of going from male to female. My new name is Kate Jackson, no middle names.
I realise that will come as a bit of a shock but to be honest, after 10,156 days of being alive, I couldn’t care less if people are shocked anymore, it’s just such a relief that I am out in the open and no long feel I have to hide. I have just spent my first day at work as a woman and after all the comments, stares, reactions from people that didn’t know, etc, I am glad that I did it.
At various points during this you will also see an FAQ. These are regular questions that I get asked so it saves me time having to repeat myself to all of you.
To put it into some context for you….this is what I plan on letting someone do to me……(not for the squimish)
So how did I get to be like this? Well it all started 10,156 days ago on September 12th 1984. At around 5:05pm on that day I was born in Sutton in Ashfield, but I was quickly adopted out to the Lincoln-based Jackson family. Like most people I don’t have any memories that are still with me from the first few years of my life and all I have are a few memories before the age of five, but there’s one thing I know for sure and that is that I have always wanted to be female. I can’t explain why, I don’t know when I first realised or even how, I’ve just always known.
At that young age I was obviously unaware of a lot of things regarding difference, afterall transsexualism isn’t exactly a subject that is taught in primary schools (or secondary schools for that matter) so I had no idea about the world of possibilities, but I knew that I was different and that I wanted to be female. Luckily childhood has a lot of distractions……”Oh, I only wish that I had been born as a …….. oooooh Power Rangers is on!”…..kids don’t have a large attention span, and I was no different.
|Nathan Jackson : Aged Three
Who’d have thought that this happy young boy would
turn into a guy who wanted to be a girl?
As time continued I started learning more about transsexualism and the possibility that men can become women (and vice versa of course) and I remember the specific moment when I decided I wanted to go through a sex change. I was in bed and reading through the TV guide and there was a picture of Pamela Anderson in a rather revealing dress, I looked, noticed the perfect blonde hair, immaculate make up, beautiful dress and well, let’s face it, bountiful chest, and I knew at that moment that a sex change was what I wanted to do.
It wasn’t until around the age of 10/11/12 when I started having issues with wanting to be female. The thoughts weren’t going away and obviously as you’re getting older your body starts going through puberty, as do other peoples. Unfortunately I developed much sooner than virtually every other boy that I knew. By the time I was 11 I was already six feet tall, growing facial hair and hair in other areas of my body that I’m sure you can figure out, and one of the biggest problem was that the other boys noticed this in the changing rooms for PE and they made a big deal of it, something I was very uncomfortable with, but I obviously couldn’t tell them why.
However, the most difficult part of growing up in my teens was by this time male and female bodies start to develop in very different ways. I was forced to watch as the girls suddenly started developing and all I remember thinking was that I wanted that. I became very socially awkward as I struggled to keep Nathan and the side that would eventually become Kate apart. Potential relationships developed but quickly fell apart as I was too scared to commit to anything without knowing how it would impact my desire to be female, in other words, I was a selfish fucker.
School wasn’t an easy time for me and whilst I made some friends (and a LOT of enemies), I never thought any of them got to know the real me and that is such a shame, because other than one person (who is in the picture below) I didn’t dislike any of them, some were very good friends.
FAQ : Why Kate?
Well I chose Kate after several years of choosing. I wanted a name that no-one I had ever known had had, not that I could remember anyway. So one night I sat and went through a baby names book and wrote down names I sort of liked. As the years went on I crossed off names of people I met and was left with three or four, and Kate was the most sensible, so there you go.
I had kept this completely to myself for a long time but then on night in May 2001 I told someone. Holly Cooper, a girl who I admit I was attracted to at the time, was the sister of my friend Sean so was someone who I sort of knew but didn’t ever expect to be the first person I would tell. I told her at roughly 8pm one evening and she said I could trust her……within 24 hours more than 2,000 people knew. She went to a school called RP and that is literally just across the road from NK, the school I went to. She told one of her friends, who subsequently told their friends, who had friends in NK and basically within a day virtually everyone knew that I wanted to the female. I panicked when people were asking and denied it, but I knew at that moment I couldn’t stay at NK and I left for college.
However, I soon became very open about it and whilst this was a great relief but I was incredibly naive about the whole thing. Being open about it turned out to be a horrible mistake. Whilst I had a great support network of friends, the fact that a lot of people who weren’t my friends back in school knew meant that I was often getting abused by their friends on the street. There was one moment in particular when I got on a bus to go into town, someone at the back of the near full bus shouted “That’s Nathan Jackson, that faggot wants a sex change, disgusting piece of shit,” …. as you can imagine, my confidence took a huge battering in those few years and I retracted back into my shell.
As time goes on and I start getting less and less abuse over this but confidence is still an all time low, only 3/4 people know I want to be female but I start letting people into that circle of my life and I can’t thank people like Charlie Herlingshaw, Ellen Lancaster and a few others for their help in restoring my confidence and showing me that not everyone was like the cold hearted bastards I had to put up before hand.
|Back in 2005 on a night out. Charlie (girl with braids) and Ellen (the pale one on the end) remain two of my closest friends to this day. They are the only two people who I feel completely comfortable telling anything and everything to.|
As time goes on and I head into my early-mid twenties, I finally start experimenting with clothes and make up….it was a bit of a disaster, but I figure that I can’t go back to being ridiculously open about it so I start developing an act, I start developing a false personality to avoid leaving myself open to before. I invented the Nathan Jackson that became the guy who would constantly argue with anyone, be as stereotypically manly as possible and make this whole thing a complete surprise. It was so perfect that virtually everyone is always surprised when I tell them.
Fortunately as I’ve been getting older it has gotten far easier to tell people and fortunately people are far more open minded than they used to be. I think that is because transsexualism is covered extensively in the media these days and people don’t have misconceptions that they used to have. Transsexualism isn’t just a gay guy who wants to find it easier to bed men, that is a misconception that seriously bugs me, as does the impression that any male who wants to be female is automatically attracted to men, that is not the case. I am 27 years old and have yet to be attracted to a guy, however, I am not ruling anything out. I think I am bisexual but heavily in favour of females at the moment. That may all change in years to come and for all I know, in four/five years I could be wanting to be with a different man every night, but as I say, that’s not me at the moment.
So anyway, skip forward to March 16th this year. It’s roughly 6:50am and basically my friendship with a girl called Jodi ended, I’m not going to go into full on details about it but basically after that I decided that it was the right time to become female. I had driven away all the important people in my life and needed a fresh start. Marinda, Jodi, Faye, and various others were people who I had drove away from my life and everything was telling me it was time to move on with my life.
I was sick of being crippled from the exhaustion of keeping a double life. I hated that I had to be different people depending on who I was around. I hated that I could only be myself around specific people and most of all I hated the person I was pretending to be. The person who I pretended to be was an arsehole….and I am happy to admit that.
|This turned out to be the last picture ever taken of Nathan Jackson.
Taken on Thursday June 29th 2012
and yes, that is the Olympic torch.
At that point I told my manager at work and over the last three months she has helped me prepare for today, the day where I have come out to everyone on Facebook, Twitter, etc. Over the last few months I have been gradually building up my clothes, make up and various other little collections of feminine items (and I can assure men that there are a LOT, and I do mean a LOT of things that women use), but I’ve never been that confident with regards to this sort of stuff, so my of the time it would be standing pretending I’m looking at something else (shampoo for example) whilst casting my eye over to what I actually want and then grabbing it.
Just over two weeks ago I also joined a transgender support group in Nottingham and it was the first time I had ever dressed as Kate outside of my flat. I enter the room and all of a sudden I had twenty pairs of eyes just staring at me. I am not a confident person, I am very self-concious, especially when dressed as Kate, so to have twenty-pairs of eyes suddenly staring at me was very nerving indeed. Fortunately as the evening went on I settled in a bit more and everything was good.
FAQ : So…..are you gay?
Well it’s a bit of a strange one because I am not attracted to men at the moment but when I picture myself as a woman, I always picture myself with a guy. My friend Megan said to me once that I wasn’t attracted to men or women, but was more attracted to straight relationships and wasn’t fussed what side of that relationship I was.
At the moment I am attracted to women but I don’t know what effect hormones will have on my brain, so it’s impossible to tell at the moment.
My team at work were also told over recently weeks and the first of these sessions was 10 days ago. My manager took away all the guys from my team to tell them and all of a sudden everything just felt so real, I became overcome with emotion and I broke down crying, and I’m not just talking about a few well hidden tears, I mean full on crying. Thankfully two of the girls from my team took me to the side and helped calm me down.
|So, this is Kate.
This is how I will appear from now on and none of you will
ever see the male version of me again.
Skip forward to today and it was the first ever day that the general pub saw Kate. Today was the first day I had ever been Kate outside of my flat or the support of the transgender group, and it’s been a nerve-jangling day.. I woke up at 5am and because I have a busted hand at the moment (that’s a story for another day), it took several hours to get ready. I left my flat at 6:15 and it took 40 minutes to walk to work and I walked past several people along the way, as you can imagine there were several comments…..not bad ones, just stuff like “Is that a guy?”….for those of you who have never met me, I’m 6 feet tall and am built like a rugby player.
Wandering around the building and obviously several people do a double take when they see, whereas a few members of my team kept looking at me on various occasions. A few people who I know see me and think I’m joking or doing it for a bet, they refuse to take it seriously.
Fortunately though, other than the puzzled look on people’s faces, there was no negativity really. At the time of writing I haven’t lost any friends on Facebook today, that despite announcing it eight hours ago and I was very surprised that not one person had an issue with it, there’s usually at least one.
So there you have it, that is how Kate came to be. I’m going going to claim that everything will go swimmingly over the next few years. I will fuck up quite a lot and will unintentionally offend on a regular basis, but hopefully in a few years we’ll be able to look back on this and laugh.