Musician Jaimie Wilson, who uses the Instagram name Tboy61915, posted the image last week. He did so to encourage people not to judge others by their outward appearance.
‘DONT JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER,’ he says. ‘I am posting this picture to show that not everyone has to show “signs” to be transgender.
‘You don’t have to pass a test to prove you’re trans… and you sure as hell don’t need ANYONES approval but your own.
‘This life is about finding yourself and becoming YOU.
‘No one’s journey is the same…so stop comparing yourself to others.
‘When I came out people refused to believe I was a man because of how “Feminine” I presented for 18 years.
‘So why am I posting this comparison? Because I want people to see it doesn’t matter what some LOOKS like…if someone has the guts to tell you “I’m transgender” “I’m gay” “I’m bisexual” anything like that PLEASE BELIEVE them and be there for them because stereotypes need to be broken.’
‘I miss having my family in my life’
Posting the image to Facebook, he elaborated further, saying that the image on the left was taken in March 2015 and the image on the right in March 2017.
‘Coming out as transgender was the best and worst day of my life thus far.
‘I miss having my family in my life…I miss my parents being proud of me…but you know what I don’t miss? I don’t miss the nights I laid alone battling with my feelings…I don’t miss waiting for everyone to leave the house so I could put on masculine clothes and tuck my long hair under a hat…I don’t miss hiding.
‘When you look at me I’m not the strongest, the tallest, or the most handsome man…but you know what I AM? I’m finally ME and god does it feel so good.’
The image, and status message, has prompted almost 20,000 comments on Facebook. Some users even offered to act as surrogate family for Jaimie.
‘If you want a grandma, I’m here,’ said Nellie Sanchez. ‘I love my grandsons and my granddaughters so much, if they tell me one day they are transgender, I don’t care, I’m going to love them the same! I only see a human being. And by the way you are very handsome, and as a girl, you where beautiful!’