A Southern man who has recently started the process of transitioning from male to female says he couldn’t have done it without the help of Nga Kete, and is urging others who want to do the same, to go for it.
“Anyone out there who wants to do this - get help! Don’t hold back. Ask and ask and ask and don’t stop.”
John* was referred to Nga Kete’s Whanau Ora service in March for help through the process, and has been assisted by Whanau Ora Navigator Davina Mackley.
“Davina has gone right out of her way to help me. She’s talked to people, got me the information I required and she doesn’t judge me.”
Davina will assist John to visit a psychologist who will carry out an assessment, and he will then be referred to an endocrinologist for hormone therapy.
John has made a date in which he will appear as a woman in society, and has given himself a female name.
Growing up, John was raised by parents who insisted he dress and appear to the outside world as a female. He was treated as a female from the day he was born; dressed in girl’s clothes, hair tied in pigtails, makeup applied and sent to an all-girls school.
He knew no different, but he knew he wasn’t the same as the other girls, he says.
As a teenager John rebelled against his parents wishes and spent his adult life identifying as male, he was married and had a child. But after the relationship ended, he made the biggest decision of his life.
It was a decision he says had been with him all along. He decided he knew in his heart that he was not the man he was portraying to be. He knew he had to become the woman he was raised as.
Making that decision felt like a huge weight off his shoulders, he says.
“It made me feel real happy within myself like I finally knew what I wanted to do.”
John says he couldn’t have come this far and would still be struggling if it hadn’t been for Davina’s help.
John’s advice to others who feel the same way he does is to continue asking for help until someone listens, and above all – don’t hold back!