Thomas Beatie, the transgender man who made headlines over the past five years for giving birth to three children, has recently in the headlines over his difficult divorce from wife Nancy. He accussed her of being an abusive alcoholic, and even recorded a shocking video of her in the throes of a drunken rage where she attacked him, dragged their daughter and then destroyed her own laptop in front of the children.
Thomas, who is identified as a male on his driver’s license and passport, and is recognized as a male by the state of Oregon, has a new girlfriend, Amber Nicholas, he wants to be able to marry after his divorce from Nancy is finalized. There’s been a hiccup, though, because his divorce has not been granted in Arizona where he now resides, because the judge does not recognize his married to Nancy in the first place.
According to Reuters, last Friday “Maricopa County Family Court Judge Douglas Gerlach ruled that Beatie had failed in his divorce petition to prove that he was a man when wed in 2003, and thus was unable to show that he and his wife were a heterosexual couple.”
This complicates things because Thomas’ marriage to Nancy IS recognized in Hawaii where they were married. Thomas is fighting back over the Arizona ruling, saying Tuesday “This obviously is not Beatie versus Beatie. This is the state of Arizona versus transgender people, human reproductive rights and fairness under law.”
Thomas currently has custody of their three children Susan (4,) Austin (3,) Jensen (2.) He was off male hormones for five years during his pregnancies, but has not only gotten back on them, but has had bottom surgery. Nancy, who is 10 years older than Thomas, has two adult daughters from a previous relationship, and couldn’t have children with Thomas because she had a hysterectomy at age 28 to treat endometriosis. Thomas was born a female named Tracy Lagondino in 1974, and began transitioning to a male in his early twenties. He underwent hormone therapy that changed his voice, facial hair, and sexual organs, and underwent breast removal surgery, but opted to keep his ovaries and uterus in case he wanted to have children.
It was his ability to give birth to children that made the Arizona judge feel like he technically cannot be a man. The judge wrote, “Parties have failed to show that the word ‘man’ in the state constitution means anything different from its plain, ordinary meaning, which by any generally accepted definition or reputable dictionary excludes people capable of giving birth.”
Thomas when he was Tracy:
Beatie recently appeared on Oprah’s OWN Network Where are They Now? with an update on his life since first appearing on The Oprah Show in 2008.
“I don’t see myself as both a mother and a father, I see myself as a father who gave birth. Susan, Austin, and Jensen call me daddy, and that is my name. I’m not Thomas anymore, I’m daddy.
I’m doing surprisingly fantastic despite lots of the things that are going on right now. Lots of changes have been happening lately with my personal life. going through a divorce, unfortunately, with Nancy right now, sadly. I am completely devastated over the loss of this marriage because she was my best friend, but it just goes to show that we’re like any other relationship or marriage and we tried very hard to make it work but ultimately the best hting for the both of us, and for the children at this time is for us to go our separate ways.”
About relationship with new girlfriend Amber: “It’s fantastic. I really love this woman.”
On whether or not he would do it all again, after everything that’s happened: “Ten years ago I wouldn’t ahve imagined that I would have been in the place I am now, that I would have been a pregnant man. I would have done everything the same if I knew this was going to happen. Through all of this I’ve determined that this is my meaning and purpose in life: to usher these human beings into this world and make sure I’m always there for them.