Tash Ozimek was 16 years old, when her father John sat her down one evening and pointedly asked: ‘What is the most embarrassing thing I could ever do to you?’ She was stumped, because, like most of teenagers, she found all dads embarrassing.
So, after racking her brains for a few minutes, she flippantly replied: ‘Probably if you dressed up as a woman in front of all my friends.’ Tash’s joke was greeted by a long, awkward silence, broken only when her father started to explain, very gently, that this was exactly what he had in mind.
He told his daughter that he’d always felt his true gender was female, that he was desperately unhappy as a man, and that he wanted to change s*x. Before he’d finished speaking, Tash, now 18, fled the room in tears. ‘It was pure shock,’ she says. ‘I remember crying for a very long time.’