A trans woman live-tweeted her stunned reaction as she came out to her family – including her 86-year-old Catholic grandmother.
Leah Hintz, 20, from Florida, chronicled her nerve-wracking experience on social media in posts that immediately went viral.
The woman, who tweets as Fullmetal Leninist, began: “so umm… i’m coming out to my dad and my grandma as a trans woman today!! this is how i’ll look when i tell them!! & i’m super nervous!! (please send help).”
However, her worries soon emerged to have been misplaced. A short while later, she tweeted a photo in which she towers over her diminutive grandmother and wrote a heart-warming caption.
In it, she quoted her relative as saying: “You’ve always been so kind and sensitive. Now I see femininity in those memories.
“I’m proud of you for recognising who you are and living as your true self. You’re a beautiful woman and, no matter who you become, I love you.”
Her elderly relative’s response warmed hearts around the world, with Leah’s post earning 19,000 retweets and 171,000 likes to date.
In a follow up, Hintz added: “I showed my grandma all the wonderful replies here. She was overwhelmed and speechless for a few moments. She told me it fills her with hope that the world has become so compassionate since she was my age. Thank you everyone for making her day… She made mine.”
Her father’s response also surprised her. Recording the conversation, Hintz wrote: “Me: ‘So… you can learn to see me as a woman?’
“Dad: ‘Of course. You’re my child and I love you. Loving you means supporting you, even if it’ll be a learning experience for me.’”
She added her father had even moved “seamlessly” to calling her Leah instead of Elijah, the name he gave her as a child. She said he also told her that her 18-year-old little brother had just come out as gay to them.
She wrote: “He wanted to tell me in person… He has a BOYFRIEND NOW????? I’m so happy for him omg!! BLESSED FAMILY VISIT!!”
Speaking to the website them., Hintz said the experience of coming out to her family had been blissfully straightforward.
“Nothing has really changed,” she said.
“They were kind of worried that they had to learn who I was again, but I had to reassure them I’m the same person I’ve always been.
“It’s just that now they know something they didn’t before. Since then, aside from calling me Leah instead of Elijah and using my pronouns, it’s just been normal.”
And of her adorable grandmother she added: “She is the kindest, most charitable Catholic lady you will ever meet. She is so wonderful — she’s filled with gratitude and humility and she’s such a blessing to be around.”