Love her or loathe her, there’s one woman who’s been creating plenty of ‘water cooler’ moments this week and that’s the notorious Chelsey Harwood. Famous for her shocking videos and being open about her past (as a man) she is splitting opinions all over the country. I myself am in the camp of ‘live and let live’ and women should be able to post whatever they want online as long as it’s not hurting anyone. I think that’s the true definition of modern day feminism, but maybe that’s just me.
I went to a business meeting yesterday and unexpectedly ran into Chelsey. She couldn’t be more different than how I imagined her to be. I expected someone vulgar and crude, making frequent references to ‘minge’. I was shocked to find someone kind, quiet…almost demure in fact. I myself came under fire for daring to say that I thought Chelsey was a lovely person. While I don’t condone the content posted during vodka-gate (for those who don’t know, Chelsey recently posted a series of vines containing sexual content involving a vodka bottle amongst other things) I do defend her right to be able to post it. I also don’t believe that an isolated incident defines who we are and makes us a good or a bad person; if it does, then god help me! People suggested that Chelsey should be acting a certain way or she should be promoting the transgender cause, she should be doing this, she should be doing that…all I know is that she should do whatever she thinks is right. I asked Chelsey if she wouldn’t mind answering a few burning questions we’re all dying to know the answers to, regardless of our own stance on her. Here’s what she had to say:
When did you realise you wanted to be a woman?
I was always a feminine child. I liked things that girls liked; put an Action Man or a Power Ranger in my face and I’d cry but put princess Barbie in my eye and I’d be made up and sit brushing her hair and making her look pretty. My mum was your typical Scouse babe; blonde, slender, immaculately dressed. All the men would turn their heads to catch a glimpse of her. I’d always see her doing her hair and make up and remember saying at the age of about 8 “Mum, if you died would you leave me your make up bag” she looked astonished but at my young age probably dismissed the comment. I fancied a boy called Jack in junior school, played with the girls and just wanted to be like them. The closest I got though was a bowl head hair style because my mum wouldnt let me grow my hair. The question “how old was I?” is one I simply answer as “It’s ran through my lifetime. Always.” It wasnt just a case of ‘let’s become a female’ it was my destiny and nothing would change the person you see before yourself today.
What did your friends and family think when you told them?
I went through my early teens believing I was a gay male because back then transgender wasnt something they educated you on in school; it was simply straight or gay. I chose to live as a gay male who dated like minded males! After being in a relationship with a successful business man from the age of 19-21 I was working for a nightclub in town as a female impersonator and looked rather convincing! People didn’t bat an eyelid and I passed as a woman. This intrigued me and made me stop and think, ”Hmmm I’d love to be a real girl just like pinocchio became a real boy but vice versa.” I had been getting a course of lazer hair removal on my face from in S.K.I.N in town and casually got chatting to the receptionist about my job and how I’d like my boobs done “for work” (who was i kidding?) She said there was a surgeon in that day and asked if I would like to meet him. I jumped at the chance and managed to convince him that I wanted my boobs done for my job and he said if I paid private he would do the op. I went home, sold my cars and took what savings I had and booked myself in for two weeks later. At this stage i told my best friend Katie that in fact I wanted them done to eventually live as a real woman and that I wanted to be called Chelsey. She was amazing about it and said “If that’s what makes you happy, it makes me happy” and from that day shes never referred to me as anything but Chelsey and a female. Right, now comes the family! I got the surgery done with all of them still believing it was for my job, including my boyfriend! When I sat them all down and came clean that I was a woman inside and I was going to be portraying that from now on, my boyfriend was naturally confused. I dont see why because at that stage he had a boyfriend with tits anyway! Which is more confusing?? They fired some questions at me like ‘are you sure?’ and ‘how long have you felt this way?’ etc before all hugging me and saying it didnt matter and they love me all the same! I have an accepting family who live and let live and are fully aware of every aspect of my life and the wild wacky things I get up to online and just laugh because its normal to them now. We aren’t a family of prudes or the type of people to pull someone down based on their own life choices.
How long was it before you decided to undergo surgery and what did you have to go through first?
I had my boobs done and then after telling my family and friends I booked into my GP surgery and told him I wanted to get the full gender reassignment surgery. My doctor had never come across this before so did all the research on my behalf, put me on female hormones and referred me to London to see psychiatrists. You can’t just get this operation done willy nilly! (pardon the pun). So usually you have to live as a female in everyday life for 2 years but because I’d already had my breasts done and was living as a woman and had changed all my details via deed poll and contacted the DVLA, passport office and the bank etc I kind of flew through many stages by myself. That’s how organised and certain I was of this life changing choice. I saw a psychiatrist in London twice although you are meant to see her 6 times but after the second meeting she was amazed and said she had never met anyone with my confidence or outlook on life and who looked as good as I did. She signed off my papers to go straight to the surgeons in Charring Cross in London. After this I met with two different surgeons and they both approved my surgery – literally this took me under a year! It’s a sure sign that I am 100% mentally stable in every way shape and form so chew on that one sexies! Haha! Certified sane, me.
What procedures have you had done and how painful was it? How long did it take to recover? Do you have any other surgeries planned?
I’ve had breast enlargement to a C cup, my adams apple removed, my vocal chords tightened and vaginoplasty to construct a fully functional vagina that replicates that of a genetic born female.
Every operation I’ve had has been painful, any girl who’s had a boob job will tell you that its like carrying a 10 ton weight for the first 2 weeks – you can’t lift your arms up, you have swelling while the breasts are settling and the skin is expanding and your muscle tissue is repairing around the implant and you have numbness!! But let me clear up a common mis-conception: You do have full sensitivity and can feel everything for e.g. a touch, a lick or a flick ;-P
My throat surgery was like having a sore throat basically nothing too dramatic.
The most painful operation was the vaginoplasty, as you can imagine. When it was first done it looked like someone had took a baseball bat, covered it in barbed wire and then beat the shit out of my bits! I had to walk using a zimmer frame but day by day it healed and took shape and in the end it now many of my girl friends tell me it looks better than theirs.
A lot of people will say it looks shit and it looks like an axe wound or some equally low blow but it’s my vagina nobody is asking you to give it the seal of approval, the surgeon and myself managed that all by ourselves.
My vagina is the real deal; I have a clitoris, a sex hole, a lil’ wee area and round the back is my bum hole…but thats another topic haha. It basically works the same way every woman’s does; I get turned on, wet, and can even take things inside cough cough [yes Chelsey, we all know this! SB x]
Why do you post such provocative content online for all the world to see?
I class my posts as normal in my eyes, a lot of the things I post are things that if a natural born female [in my profession] posted, nobody would bat an eyelid. I’ve built a strong audience of followers across social media and I have, as Scouse Bird has recognised. an online persona. I am in real life a funny character, it’s called being real and keeping it real! A lot of the things I say are things others are afraid to say and I think that’s blatantly obvious to be honest! On the same note when I’m posting videos with props like toothbrushes and vodka bottles, of course I’m aware its going to spark controversy. Do you not think I’m aware of this and that I know exactly what I’m doing? I like to push boundaries and show people that anything you can do, I can do. I mean just because im a transsexual doesnt mean I’m not allowed to write or post any video I want. At the end of the day people jump on EVERYTHING I say and do so I just do as I please now! Just because I’m a ‘tranny’ doesnt make my thoughts or opinions invalid and unimportant! Educate yourselves, because which other transsexual is educating any of you? At least I’m trying, regardless of any of you thinking I’m some slaggy wannabe. Think about it has anyone else ever done what I do being male to female?? NO and that’s because they live in the shadows and are hiding because of people like YOU [judging] but thats not my style and I shall not live in the darkness and shadows of society – so put up or shut up! There’s also an option to not look or watch anything I post online ever thought of that? Now I dont want to tarnish everyone because a lot of you are amazing (ROCKKK ONNN BITCHESSS) I adore all of my supporters and people who have more than one vision in this world. You are what will benefit the world, not small minded divvies.
How do your friends feel about your infamous videos?
I must say, my friends were disappointed by the recent videos of me inserting things into my vagina so publicly. They brought to my attention concerns about how it looks that they are friends with me and that they have boyfriends and children etc! I was shocked to hear of this and removed the videos immediately as my friendships are more important to me than a stupid set of videos! Don’t get me wrong these concerns were voiced to me directly, call it an intervention if you like and our friendships remain fully in tact. My friends are much like me; very real and basically would defend me to the world and fight my corner but still tell me in private that they find certain things inappropriate! On the whole though they love my videos and we have a good laugh about them and about the comments they attract.
What’s the reaction from the general public?
It’s a bit of a 50/50 divide. There are the supportive people and the negative people, but that’s life, you can never please everyone and I wouldnt even try! If i posted a video of me eating a slice of toast someone would tell me I was eating it wrong but hey ho! Move on build a bridge and get over it I say.
How do you feel your behaviour affects the transgender cause?
I don’t really do causes but I’d say to the transgender community to re-assess their position in society and to stop living in fear of who and what you are. I think they are the problem and not me. How in the hell are you going to rise from the ashes if you are scared and unwilling to live your lives as proud individuals? It’s not a crime to be transgender and I hope they gain strength and courage from me being me and keeping it real. I’m educating the world and am proud of who I am, no if’s or but’s.
Do you always tell men the truth before you sleep with them and what are their reactions?
I think everyone already knows but of course I would never take the choice of being with me away from any man. What would be the point in not telling men?? It’s like going back on everything I believe in and it wouldnt do me any favours. If a man wants me, he’s got me, mind, body and soul. What you see is what you get, there’s no middle ground with me. If he doesn’t want me when he knows thats fine. I remain unaffected. I’m single and dont sleep around anyway so I’m pretty happy with eliminating men based on their acceptance.
You have a successful webcam business, tell me about it.
I am am adult webcammer. I went from a job in fast food to earning £3 per minute giving men happy endings; a lot like babestation only its all online. I can cater to any mans desires, he may just want to chat or he may have a fetish for transsexuals and i am his fantasy girl. Either way I’m providing a service to these men and also earning a good, honest living in the meantime from the comfort of my own home. It’s a win-win situation.
What really happened with Brendan Rogers?
Well a football forum suggested that Brendan had been carrying on with me, I became aware of this and tweeted a sarcastic comment like “Yeahhh he fucked my fake vagina and then slammed his dick in my ass.” and it blew up across social media. I had newspapers on my doorstep and literally recieved death threats from football hooligans, you name it, it got said! People are always telling me to ignore hate and not to reply so I did and then people went mad because I didnt react. I got called a home wrecker and a liar because I didn’t clear the rumour up! Let me tell you now a little bit of goss before i go.. Brendan and his wife took a great interest in my twitter page and found it funny; he said he had no intentions of sueing me or seeking any legal advice and that I could have left it online he wouldn’t have been bothered nor would his wife. Also the LFC team had banter with him over it and he rolled with it. What a LEGEND! Brendan you’re pretty cool.
Do you really have your willy in a jar?
It’s an urban myth that my willy is in a jar. I actuallu signed a consent form for the trousersnake to be medically tested on to help find a cure for cancer. Just call me Marie Curie or Mother Theresa. Oh and I’m not the Jesus Christ of transsexuals.
So there you have it. Whatever you think of Chelsey, you can’t ever accuse her of being boring!
Thank you for taking the time to set the record straight Chels, in my eyes at least, you’re a feminist.