A pregnant transgender man is making history by appearing on the cover of Glamour UK‘s latest issue.
Logan Brown, a 27-year-old writer, posed while expecting his first child and opened up to the magazine about his experience. “I am a trans pregnant man and I do exist,” Brown said. “I am literally living proof.”
The publication wrote that it decided to feature Brown because it seeks to celebrate “the allyship that exists between women (cisgender or not) and transgender people through our shared experiences — in particular pregnancy, health care and childbirth — something that is not often talked about with regard to the transgender community.”
“Being pregnant, in general, is really, really difficult. Then add me being trans,” he said of the challenges he faced. “No one’s actually turned around to me and said, ‘Are you OK?’ No one’s asked what it feels like to be a trans pregnant man.”
Brown also admitted to receiving “hateful messages” from people online who claimed that men can’t get pregnant.
“This thing about ‘men can’t get pregnant’ is that I would not identify as anything else just because I found out I’m pregnant,” he explained. “It’s important for me to stay real with my identity. I am a pregnant man, and I am trans.”
Yes, trans men can give birth
The truth is transgender men (those biologically born as female but identify as men) can give birth in the same way anyone with female reproductive organs — uterus, ovaries and fallopian tubes — can. That includes conceiving from penetrative sex with someone with sperm or through assisted reproductive technology (ART), such as intrauterine insemination (IUI) or in vitro fertilization (IVF).
Despite that fact, trans pregnancies are often overlooked in discussions about reproductive health due to sizable gaps in medical research and overall education, notes Dr. Juno Obedin-Maliver, assistant professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Stanford University School of Medicine.
“None of our systems have been designed to delineate the difference between somebody’s gender and somebody’s pregnancy capacity,” Obedin-Maliver told Yahoo Life in January. According to a February Gallup survey on identity, 1 in 10 LGBTQ adults living in the United States identify as transgender (close to 2.3 million people). And while there is no comprehensive data on how many have given birth, or are considering IVF, Obedin-Maliver says it’s more common than people would expect.
One of the reasons behind the lack of data, she notes, is that medical systems fall behind in understanding the nuances of trans male pregnancies. In most cases, birthing parents are marked as “female” on the child’s birth certificate, by default, even when it’s not always accurate (and without the consent of the parents). That makes it difficult to have a full picture.
Change is happening — slowly
Medical organizations like the Society for Maternal Fetal Medicine, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology and the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine are helping to bridge the gap in medical knowledge around trans male pregnancies, thanks in large part to a growing number of trans dads who’ve shared their stories online to implement wider change — including with the hashtag #seahorsedad, which has nearly 382 million posts on TikTok.
“The research is out there,” Dr. Devon Ojeda, senior national organizer for National Center for Transgender Equality, explained to Yahoo Life. “The health care system has to completely change the way they see preventative care beyond the gender binary.”
As for Brown, who has since given birth to a baby girl named Nova, whom he shares with his partner, TikToker Bailey Mills, he hopes his story can pave the way for other trans men who wish to carry their own children. That itself is worth the battle scars.
“If something is being talked about, then something’s changing, something’s happening and we’re getting somewhere,” he told Glamour UK. “At least it’s being talked about, because back in the day, it was never talked about at all.”
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