A transgender man is pregnant with his second child after battling backlash from strangers when he was expecting his first baby.
Kayden Coleman, 33, from New York, began transitioning from female to male in 2009 and was shocked to discover he was five months pregnant with his first child, Azaelia, now six, after he was forced to stop taking testosterone for his mastectomy in March 2013.
He gave birth to a daughter, Azaelia, now six, in 2014. But the father-of-one, who has not had genital construction surgery and has kept his female reproductive organs, was again stunned to find out in January that he was seven-weeks pregnant with his current boyfriend, Dominique, 29.
Now, the expectant parents say they can’t wait to meet baby number two, despite previously facing backlash from online from trolls who described Kayden as a ‘monster’ and called for his child to be taken into care.
The LGBT care worker said: ‘I do enjoy parts of being pregnant like the fact it makes my beard thicker.
‘But I don’t get the same pregnancy privileges because it is not obvious that I’m carrying a child, people just assume it’s a beer belly, so people don’t give up their seat for me or hold doors open.
‘Even growing up as a girl I hated my chest, I never wanted to wear a bra and I knew that even if I didn’t transition I would have had a reduction.
‘But I never had bottom surgery because it’s expensive, there are often a lot of complications with it and it can numb things sexually.
‘I’ve never been scared of backlash because at the end of the day until these people are paying my bills or putting food on my table their opinions are just that.’
He continued: ‘When Azaelia was born there were a lot of people who said they felt sorry for her and that she would grow up and be confused.
‘They said that she should be taken away and called me a monster.
‘But it’s important for people to understand that we have full autonomy over our bodies and we should do with it as we please.
‘I can’t wait to meet my second baby and Azaelia is so excited about having a little brother or sister.’
At the age of 20, Kayden realized he wanted to be a man and three years later started medically transitioning by taking testosterone.
Six weeks before his top surgery in March 2013, Kayden had to stop taking his transition hormones and fell pregnant with Azaelia with his then-boyfriend Elija – giving birth to the healthy baby girl in January 2014.
But sharing his journey as a pregnant trans-man online, the dad faced a backlash with many trolls criticising him for ‘confusing’ his daughter.
Kayden said: ‘I knew I wanted to transition in 2007 but at that time there weren’t very many resources and a female to male transition wasn’t very common.
‘If you went on Google and searched for testosterone you would get some sketchy website based in India and it was hard to find binders for your chest.
‘I identified as a lesbian at the time and my girlfriend was not okay with me transitioning and tried to talk me out of it so it wasn’t until 2009 that I started the process.
‘I had to stop taking testosterone six weeks prior to the surgery and a month after I had it, I conceived my first child.
‘I thought I was just gaining weight but actually I was growing a baby.
Despite the online trolls, Kayden and Dominique are looking forward to meeting their baby and are currently planning their shower before it is expected to arrive in August.
Walking down the street, the couple claim they have never had problems or funny looks from onlookers, with Kayden suspecting they don’t even realize his big tummy is a baby bump.
But the dad has had to face being misgendered, told he doesn’t belong in medical settings for pregnant women and has even been offered an abortion as late as 28 weeks along by healthcare professionals.
He said: ‘We don’t really have any issues when we’re out with Azaelia. People just see two men and a baby because it’s not outwardly apparent that I carried her in my womb.
‘I think a lot of people just think that we had sex with a woman or adopted her and when she says she has to dads nobody questions her because we have taught her to be proud of who she is and where she came from.
‘But there’s been a lot of objection to my pregnancies in terms of the medical side of things.
‘I’ve been told I don’t belong in certain places because I’m not a woman and I’ve been offered an abortion more times than any woman would have been offered by medical staff.
‘When I had Azaelia I had to switch my health insurance back from male but female and had to deal with them calling me Mrs Coleman when I was in the waiting room.
‘I think it’s important that people understand that there are a plethora of trans-identities we are not all one and the same.
‘Just because I went from female to male doesn’t mean I have a desire to date women or be hyper masculine or even be cis-gender.
‘I don’t have to hate my body or object parts of it to be considered a real man.
He concluded: ‘I’m lucky enough to have a working uterus and reproductive system that allows me to carry a child and create life so why should I have to reject that part of me just because I’m trans?’.