5 Transgender men who overcame incredible adversity to fall pregnant
Years ago, the idea of a pregnant man was completely unheard of - not to mention, thought to be biologically impossible. Skip to 2018 and transgender men are challenging the norm, with news of their pregnancies helping to provide higher visibility for those whose sense of personal identity and gender does not correspond with their birth sex, but still wish to have biological children.
Nonetheless, although society has a higher awareness of trans people, this doesn't mean that their pregnancies are easy, or accepted by everyone. When trans men become pregnant, they are forced to overcome extreme adversity and still have to fight for their right in society to have their own kids. Nonetheless, by bravely documenting their experiences, they open all of our eyes to this difficult battle. So, without further ado, familiarise yourself with these five incredible trans men who are challenging the way society views gender and pregnancy.
At the age of 23 years old, Thomas Beatie underwent sex reassignment surgery, keeping his internal reproductive organs intact because he'd always wanted to have biological children. His wish came true in 2008 when he gave birth to his first child who he shares with now-former wife Nancy. He went on to get birth to two more children and later became a well-known transgender figure, stating: "I have a very stable male gender identity. I see pregnancy as a process, and it doesn't define who I am. It's not a male or female desire to want to have a child—it's a human desire ... I'm a person, and I have the right to have my own biological child."
Trystan Reese and Biff Chaplow
Until Trystan Reese met John Caplow, he thought children just weren’t in the cards for him as a recently transitioned transgender man. However that all changed and the pair now have three children. The couple's first two children were non-biological: Biff's biological niece, Hailey, and nephew, Riley, who were both adopted when it became clear that Biff's sister could not look after them. However, Trystan later gave birth to the couple's third child, Leo.
Transgender man Kayden Coleman - who had been on testosterone jabs for five years, had grown facial hair and was about to have a double mastectomy - thought something was weird when he experienced back pain one day. Joking that he should take a pregnancy test, he was shocked when it came back as positive. Going to the doctor, he discovered he was 21 weeks pregnant and shortly after, him and his partner Elijah welcomed their daughter Azaelia into the world.
Trangender man Chris Rehs-Dupin and his wife Amy from Columbus, Ohio always knew they wanted a family, but their dreams were shattered when Amy was unable to fall pregnant. After five attempts of intrauterine insemination failed, Chris volunteered to carry their baby and gave birth to their daughter, Hayden, naturally on December 20, 2014. Chris has since spoken of being pregnant as a trans man, saying: "Being pregnant is such a female thing and that's when I started to question that it was not what I was. I don't think I had a problem emotionally having a child, I wasn't losing a part of my identity. I think the world had a bigger problem with it than I did."
Jason Barker transitioned at the age of 26 after meeting his partner Tracey. Hoping to start a family, they were forced to resort to plan B when Tracey couldn't conceive after years of trying. Soon after, Jason decided to stop taking testosterone and get pregnant himself. “I would defend that body. That body is a beautiful thing because of what it’s doing and what it’s done,” he has said about his pregnant body. "The body was 'all about my kid.'"
Pretty incredible, right? If you want to hear more about society's attitudes towards transgender people, check out what happened when VT asked parents if they'd give their child a transgender doll.