A Welsh teenager is supposed to be UK’s first transgender Prom Queen after her fellow students crowned her.
Lori Beynon, 16, from Cardigan, said it was the ‘best moment of her life’ when she found out that her classmates had voted for her to be Prom Queen, and she was offered a crown and a sash.
The bubbly fashion lover was born Luis but started transitioning two years ago after telling her mother she was transgender by text.
Glamorous Lori wears a skirt to secondary school and is about to start hormone treatment.
But the teen had never worn a ‘proper dress’ until the end of school prom so she was surprised when her classmates at Cardigan Secondary School voted her to be this year’s Prom Queen at the end of school dance.
Apparently, it’s the first time a transgender person has been crowned prom king or queen in the UK.
Overwhelmed Lori said: ‘I was really excited to be going to prom anyway. It was the first time I had really worn a proper dress.
‘I felt really nice I had fake tan on and I was really happy. I went with all my friends and I didn’t know but they voted for me as Prom Queen.
‘That was nice but I never thought other people would too. But when they called out my name it was amazing.
‘It was quite scary walking up in front of everyone. It was probably the best moment of my life. Everyone was standing up and clapping.
‘I didn’t feel like I was a girl – I felt like I was a queen.’
Lori said she knew she was a girl from age three, and loved wearing big sister Chloe’s clothes and playing with her Bratz dolls.
But when she started school she realised the ‘outside didn’t match the inside’ and started researching online aged 10 to put a name to her feelings.
Lori explained: ‘I’ve always wanted to dress like a girl and present myself as a girl.
‘Being called “him” and “he” never really felt real to me. It always felt wrong. It was weird.
She added: ‘I used to put a towel on my head to pretend it was long hair.
‘I knew I was a girl. I didn’t think or know I was any different. It was only when I got older that I started to realise that the outside didn’t match the inside.
‘When I was about 10, I searched on the internet for “I feel like I girl and I don’t know what to do”.
‘I had no idea what it meant to be transgender then. I had no clue. I read lots of articles about it and watched a few documentaries.
‘I knew that was me but I kept it inside for a really long time.’
Then just 13, brave Lori confessed she wanted to have gender reassignment treatment to supportive mum Sarah Young, 37, a health worker.
‘I told her in a text because I was too scared to tell her to her face,’ she said.
‘Puberty was the worst time in my life. It was horrible. I would wake up and run over to the mirror and it was really hard to deal with.
‘I would be there looking at my face and thinking “Do I have a beard?” It’s horrible to feel like that.
She added: ‘[My mum] was really, really, really supportive. She said “I will support you all the way”‘.
Newly confident Lori started to grow her hair, try more girls’ clothes, and started counselling at the Gender Identity Development Service at London’s Tavistock Clinic
She changed her name to Lori in June 2015. She attended her school prom earlier this month, and was excited to dress beautifully at the event for Year 11 students.
She said: ‘I never thought at all that I would get prom queen. It was totally incredible.
‘It felt like I was a celebrity. It was pretty weird. I just want to go as far as I can to feel authentic to myself and who I am. Being prom queen was one step closer.’
Mum Sarah added: ‘I couldn’t be more proud of Lori.
‘I’m not sure there’s been another transgender prom queen so I believe my daughter is the first.’
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