Tom Gabel, popular punk rocker and lead of the band Against Me!, has announced plans to live as a woman.
Gabel, 31, grew up with gender dysmorphia, a condition in which one feels trapped in the wrong gender's body.
Gabel, who is considering gender reassignment surgery, has started taking female hormones and has undergone electrolysis.
"I'm going to have embarrassing moments, and that won't be fun," the musician says in the June issue of Rolling Stone (which hits newsstands Friday).
"But that's part of what talking to you is about — is hoping people will understand, and hoping they'll be fairly kind."
The rocker will go by the name Laura Jane Grace (Gabel has a "Grace" tattoo) and will remain married to wife Heather. The two have a daughter, 2.
"For me, the most terrifying thing about this was how she would accept the news," Gabel says about Heather. "But she's been super-amazing and understanding."
News on the Gabel's decision caused searches to hit a high note. Lookups on Yahoo! included "against me," "against me transgender, and "tom gabel."
Gabel is the first rock star to come out as transgendered and joins a list of other prominent figures in the public eye. Cher and Sonny Bono's child Chaz Bono (formerly Chastity Bono) transitioned from female to male starting in 2008. Dee Palmer (formerly David Palmer) was the keyboardist of Jethro Tull and transitioned from male to female in 2004. New York mainstay Amanda Lepore is a muse of famed photographer David LaChapelle, and Justin Vivian Bond (a.k.a. V) is a regarded performance artist. Stu Rasmussen was elected America's first transgender mayor. Model Caroline Cossey appeared in Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, even Playboy while concealing her past as a male, along with being cast as a Bond girl. Korean superstar Harisu has exemplified the heights that a transgendered person has attained, becoming as beloved and accepted as any other major star in Korea.
While Against Me! may not be a household name, they are best known for their song "Thrash Unreal" and will embark on a tour with the British rock band The Cult later this month.
- Arts & Entertainment
- Tom Gabel
- gender reassignment surgery