An Andover-raised shopworker has discussed their journey of coming to terms with their sexuality.

Colt May was born as a woman, but now identifies as non-binary, which LGBTQ+ charity Stonewall defines as “An umbrella term for people whose gender identity doesn’t sit comfortably with ‘man’ or ‘woman’.”

They add: “Non-binary identities are varied and can include people who identify with some aspects of binary identities, while others reject them entirely.”

Colt says that they have “struggled” with their sexuality and mental health “for a big part of adult life” and was unsure who they were.

At first, they came out as a lesbian, but also identified with masculine qualities.

“After years and years of thinking,” Colt says, “debating and trying to understand myself and what the hell is going on, I was introduced to the term non-binary.

“I cannot tell you, after a lot of research, how much this resonated with me. I have spent years trying to understand my feelings and to find out I wasn’t alone or weird for feeling this way, I feel validation. I feel safe.”

Having started to come to terms with their identity, Colt changed their name, which they described as “one of the most grounding things” they have done. As the next stage of their journey, they are now hoping to have top surgery, where breast tissue is removed during an operation.

They say that this surgery will cost between £6,000 and £7,000, following a gender referral from a psychiatrist. As a result, they are fundraising part of the cost online, trying to raise a target of £2,000.

“I would pay 10 times that,” Colt said, “if it means finally being comfortable in my own skin.”

If the money is raised, they hope to have a consultation before the end of the year, followed by surgery in 2021.

“I don’t expect a penny,” Colt said. “I don’t mind if I receive nothing from this, but what I do want to do is be open with my journey, and spread my story and awareness that it is ok to feel this way.”

Anyone wishing to learn more can head to Colt’s fundraising page here.