Play / pause Coming out trans

Coming out trans

  • Caroline Paige
  • Interview by: Jess Boydon


So the next step was to tell the Air Force.

And so I was seeing a professional medical specialist,

gender identity psychiatrists and so on.

Who had diagnosed me with the same.

So I had the paperwork and I had to go the medical officer

and I chose my medical officer hoping

that she would be understanding and help.

And so I went into the medical office

with a big pile of papers from the specialist

and from stuff I'd researched on the internet

'cause now this was end of '98, early '99.

So I had access to that, fortunately.

And when I told her, she cleared her appointments

for the rest of the afternoon

and we had a really good long chat

and she was very supportive.

And then we put it to the Air Force.

She put it to the Air Force on my behalf

to my base commander and it went up from there.

And the answer that came down was,

"We want to keep you in service.

"How do we do this?"

And so that was wonderful for me

because I really did enjoy doing my job.

And I had a lot of experience, a lot of skills

that would have been absolutely

just wasted being thrown out.

For no other reason than I was a transgender

as I now knew the term.

So the Air Force decided to keep me in

which was brilliant, so I became the first Airperson

to transition gender in the Royal Air Force.

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