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Patricia Davies knows something about courage. During her time in the British Army, she served in India, East Africa and Palestine. She lost friends and almost died herself. But she’s just done one of the bravest things yet: Coming out as a transgender woman at the age of 90.
Though Davies had known she was a woman since she was three, she was afraid to come out. At the time, transgender issues weren’t understood. As she told the Sun, “Transgender wasn’t really known in those days. I would have been classed as homosexual, which would have caused problems in the army. I would have ended up in prison. But I got through it.”
At 60, she first came out to her wife. Her wife was supportive, but early attempts at being out publicly were thwarted by bullies. Davies said “I started to wear female shoes, some teenagers spotted it and started hurling abuse. They used to often throw eggs at my windows too.”
Davies was blessed to have the support of her family. Davies’ wife called her by her chosen first name and would buy her jewelry. Similarly, as a child, Davies’ mother — while perhaps not knowing her child was trans — was supportive. Davies said “We went to see Peter Pan and I wanted to be a fairy. She made me a wand. She didn’t say it was strange.”
After making the decision to come out publicly last year, Davies says “It feels like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders.” And her friends and neighbors have been there for her — she said they all said they accepted her and just wanted her to be happy.
And for anyone who does have a problem with it — too bad, because Patricia doesn’t care anymore. “It wasn’t until recently that I felt safe to come out and I felt an overwhelming desire that I wanted to break free. So I came out and I’ve not regretted it.”
Since coming out, she’s started taking hormones and has joined the Beaumont Society — a UK support group for transgender people. That’s not the only group she’s joined — Davies has also signed up with the Women’s Institute. “I joined the Women’s Institute. I socialise with them and have a natter. I’m having a great time. I have a new lease on life.”