Sections

‘I Am Nancy,’ a Brooklyn man’s journey to womanhood: Part 1

Brooklyn Daily
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Don’t miss our updates:

Caitlyn Jenner’s gender dysphoria began long before she was rich and famous, says Nancy Owen of Bay Ridge, an authority on women born in men’s bodies.

The pre-operative transgender woman, who did not want her real name used, is acutely familiar with the personal struggle of the world’s most famous male Olympian — until recently called Bruce — to present himself as a female.

“Caitlyn has said she had these feelings since she was 8 years old,” says the attractive 39-year-old brunette, a divorced dad with a two-year jump on the gold medalist’s transition. “At 6 I recall being in the playground and seeing a girl in a skirt and thinking how lucky she was because of that.”

In first grade, Nancy came across a Mad Magazine cartoon showing a man inserting a dollar bill into a coin machine and changing into a woman.

“Most boys would’ve thought switching to a woman would be icky,” she says. “But I remember thinking how cool it was.”

At 9 years old, in a life-altering encounter, she saw a boy dressed as a girl for Halloween.

“I knew then I wanted to dress as a girl,” she says.

Two years later, alone in the family den, Nancy impulsively tried on her older sister’s panties.

“I thought I looked cute,” she says. “It felt to normal to me, but I had to change back before anyone got home.”

Soon she began a weekly ritual of dressing in her sister’s skirts, dresses, and underwear.

“It felt right,” she says.

Outwardly Nancy seemed like a typical schoolboy, occupied with studies, sports, friends, and chores, but her private moments were consumed by a burning desire.

“When I was alone, I knew I wanted to be female, and fantasized that I was,” she says.

Nancy’s mother, now deceased, busted her at 13, hiding her lingerie.

“She asked me if I wanted to be a girl,” she says. “I said ‘no,’ knowing I was lying.”

Today, Nancy takes female hormones, rocks head scarves, and presents herself as a woman — to mixed reviews.

“Pretty much everyone is supportive, except my father and my sister,” she says, adding that confronting herself has been the toughest hurdle.

Next week: Part 2, adulthood, marriage, and kids.

Follow me on Twitter@BritShavana

Read Shavana Abruzzo's column every Friday on BrooklynDaily.com. E-mail here at sabruzzo@cnglocal.com.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Don’t miss our updates:


Reasonable discourse

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Hey there, Brooklyn Daily reader!

Yes, you’re in the right place — Brooklyn Paper is the new online home of BrooklynDaily.com.

So bookmark this page, and remember check it throughout the day for the latest stories from your neighborhood — and across this great borough of ours.