'Twelve years into our marriage, my husband went from Daddy to Maddy.'

Kristin Collier’s home life is an eyebrow-raising hybrid – along with her two children, she lives under the same roof as her transgender husband and her romantic partner.

It might not be conventional, but for the Oregon family it works.

Twelve years into their marriage, Kristin’s loving husband Fred began showing signs of depression, and confessed a deep-seated secret: he longed for a life as a woman.

When Kristen returned from a week-long trip to her mother’s, Fred explained he had purchased women’s clothing and had never felt more excited and scared in his life.

“He thought it was a sick weirdness inside of him,” the 44-year-old communications specialist explained to The Independent. “And I was sure my whole life would fall apart.”

Seda (top left) and Kristin (bottom right) with their children. (Image:

The reality that her life partner wanted to become a woman propelled Kristin's own fears that their once-happy marriage was a sham.

“Was our relationship real? Was all of my joy in the last 12 years real or was it a lie?" she'd ask herself, ultimately arriving at the conclusion that despite his changing appearance, her husband would still be the man she loved.

“I just loved the guy, he was too awesome. The person I needed to help me get me through my grief was my best friend, and that was Fred.

“Fred was the most amazing person I’d ever known, so I didn’t want to leave.”

Three years of therapy later, Fred arrived at the conclusion he would transition. Overnight, Fred became Seda, and Daddy became Maddy.


WATCH: A Tasmanian schoolgirl comes out to peers as transgender. (Post continues...)

Video via Melinda Miles

Seda immediately began wearing women's clothes around the home, and went on a shopping trip with Kristin to get her ears pierced. Quickly, the relationship between Kristin and Seda began to resemble that of "sisters" rather than husband and wife, she says.

For a heterosexual Kristin, that phase of her life was deeply "awkward and confusing" as she precariously juggled the status of a legally married woman, who also identified as single.

“I feel more like a widow than a divorcee. The person I was in love with is dead and gone. The chemistry is gone," Kristin says.

“We still get along very well but there’s no attraction there for either of us, which makes it possible for someone else to come in without jealousy and awkwardness.”

Years after the transition, Kristin found love with her current partner Richard, who promptly moved in to the American household.

While the set up may seem unusual - Seda lives in a private wing of the home where Kristin, Richard and the children live - Kristin insists having a "parenting partner" has been wonderful. Chores are also divided equally, with Richard taking charge of the cooking, while Seda does the washing and laundry.

The experience has also encouraged Kristin to reevaluate her own relationship with her sexuality and gender, she says.

“At first I thought I knew all about what it meant to be a woman, and now I know I don’t.

“I can’t now define what being a woman is because now I think it’s up to you, it comes from inside of you.”

Kristin has recently released a book, Home(re)making in a Transgender Marriage. You can purchase it from Amazon here.

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