‘My Husband is Now My Wife’: Couple Speak on Marriage After Transition
By Maria Azzurra Volpe
April 4, 2022
They say that true love can endure anything, time, distance, financial instability, but can it also endure a change of sex? Allyssa and Andrea Connor, who’ve been married for over 26 years, are proof that love always wins!
Allyssa, a 50-year-old from Utah, who was once part of the Mormon church, has lived the majority of her life as Kevin, living in a body she didn’t feel was hers, until recently, when she finally found the strength to come out as transgender, at 47 years old.
As Kevin, Allyssa, married her wife Andrea in June 1996, and together they’ve had three children and a 26-year loving marriage.
At the time they got married, Allyssa says, there wasn’t a term for transgender, or gender dysphoria yet, so she just thought she liked being feminine. She said: “I told my wife that for some reason feminine things were very important to me and I enjoyed wearing girls’ things. I didn’t tell her I was transgender because it wasn’t a word back then.”
The ex-sales director and her wife, Andrea, had only dated for about six months before getting married, and telling her about how she really felt inside was just “a small part of the new information [they] were learning about each other”, said Allyssa, adding that it was only discussed as a private practice with no thought of transitioning since the concept was still foreign to them.
Unlike what many wives would think, Andrea was very supportive of her partner after coming out as trans, and made it easier for her to be able to express herself. “Andrea was very respectful and sensitive of my feelings and would buy me things that she felt I would enjoy experiencing,” said Allyssa.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, there are no reliable statistics on what happens to marriages after a spouse comes out as transgender. And in a limited survey of 6,450 trans men and women, published by the Center for Transgender Equality, more than half of young couples stay together after a gender transition, whilst older couples over the age of 50 are more likely to split.
…She said: “There were no words to explain what Kevin/Allyssa was telling me. I didn’t expect my husband to become a woman, but as time went on, it was clear to me that our future wasn’t going to be traditional.
…Through the years the couple have faced criticism and lost some of their friends and families due to their life choices. Growing up in Northern Utah, Alyssa was part of the Mormon church, but the same church she once worshiped outcasted her once they learned about her transition.