A trans man from Wisconsin is the first person to give birth before AND after transition. Kaci Sullivan, 30, gave birth this week to his baby, Phoenix, five years after his first child, Grayson, was born.
During his first pregnancy, Sullivan was battling issues related to his gender identity, which created a mixture of confusion and fear. Ultimately, after his first child was born, Kaci decided to begin his transition which ended his relationship with his ex-husband.
Sullivan shared with the Daily Mail:
Throughout the experience, I prayed to connect with womanhood, to identify with what was happening to my body, but I couldn't. I felt so hopeless and lost. I wanted to die. I fell into such a dark place and I was terrified to bring a baby into that darkness with me.
But the moment they put him in my arms it was bliss. Immediately I loved him like I had never loved anything or anyone and I felt such a surge of duty to him.
I couldn't be this depressed and be a good parent to him. If I didn't come out and transition, I knew I would eventually succumb to dysphoria, depression and suicide.
So, when the baby was three months old, I told my husband I was transgender.
This time around Sullivan has his boyfriend Steven who he met in 2014 through online dating. The two had a pregnancy scare that led them to try to conceive in 2016 when Sullivan had to stop taking male hormones for other health reasons.
During this pregnancy, Sullivan mentioned that he did not feel any less masculine and did not have the same issues he did during his first pregnancy. He addressed that he feels pregnancy is not a gendered thing. He delivered Phoenix by C-section after 26-weeks of morning sickness at the tail end of his pregnancy.
But what about the incredible backlash this couple has received from the masses?
Sullivan has this to say:
Some people have been perturbed by the idea of me giving birth, but I don't engage or respond to them. If I see those comments I just get rid of them. They will try and find our safe space and violate it with their opinions, but they are jerks. I don't waste my time or energy by giving them anything in return. Because I don't see pregnancy as inherently feminine, and because I don't subscribe to make-believe gender roles, I wasn't threatened by the idea of pregnancy. It didn't make me feel any less masculine.
The couple plans to raise both of their children in a gender-neutral environment with non-gendered clothing and toys so that they are not constrained by gender norms.