Revealing a Shocking Secret

August 4, 2000

Leslie was born a male. In order to align her body with the person she had always been inside, she had surgery to become a woman. She wants to meet someone, but has a question for Dr. Phil: When is the best time to present her change of gender to the men she meets?

Dr. Phil's Advice

  • No relationship is any good if it's based on deception.
  • Be at peace with your decision. You made a serious commitment. You removed body parts, and you can't put them back.
  • Know what the price is. Did you realize that there would be social implications? You have to expect that there might not be a broad range of acceptance among the male population.
  • The second the relationship becomes relevant -- if it's emotionally relevant, if it's romantically relevant, if it's relationship relevant -- you have to tell the truth.
  • Your gender change won't be relevant to a lot of your relationships. If you're buying a house, it's not relevant to the realtor what you're sexual or gender history is. If you're forming an intimate, emotional or sexual relationship, it's something people want to know.
  • Be prepared to be open and honest with people going into the relationship so they don't feel betrayed. The further you get into the relationship, the more they're going to feel betrayed if you tell them later.
  • Are you prepared to have a relationship with yourself? You might never have someone with whom you want to have a relationship that is accepting of the choices you made.