The beauty of gender identity lies in its dynamic nature. As people go through changes and discover their true selves, so does their gender identity. RuPaul’s Drag Race contestant Laganja Estranja is a testament to this. Making headlines after her most recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, the drag queen admitted that she identifies as transgender.
She also shared the information to her followers by posting a message on her Instagram account, which read, “I am so proud to identify as TRANS and to be living my truth. Happy PRIDE, you are beautiful as you are.” The news was met with an overwhelming outpour of support and admiration, especially from the LGBTQIA+ community, who celebrates Pride Month in June.
The 32-year-old admits to initially feeling nervous about making the announcement; however, the fight and struggles of all the trans people who came before her have inspired her to come forward and not to be scared. During her birthday In 2020, she made the decision to disclose her gender identity to her closest friends. Since then, she has spent time becoming comfortable and fully committing to her authentic self, and just a few weeks back, she finally revealed the exciting news to her family. Receiving the approval of her incredibly supportive friends and family has made her feel happy and at peace.
Having gone on quite the journey, she recalls wanting to fit into society’s norms, which is why she wanted to be male all her life. In 2017, she then came out as gender nonbinary. At the same time, she no longer feels that to be an accurate representation of herself. Coming to terms with her truth, she fearlessly claims her feminine entity.
The performer gives credit to drag for being a safe space and avenue that she needed to introspect. Dressing up as a woman for her drag persona for ten years has allowed her to explore her identity without people constantly questioning and pressuring her.
She also expresses gratitude to fellow Drag Race contestant and trans woman Gia Gunn, who has been pivotal in her coming out experience. Laganja fondly remembers how Gia remained extremely respectful and allowed her to take her time in figuring things out even though the latter already knew she was a woman since their first meeting.
Being able to freely express herself and acknowledge her identity has been a life-changing experience for the social media star. Now, she wants to use her story to inspire others by highlighting that everyone’s journey is different and unique. At the end of the day, what matters most is how a person feels on the inside. For her, it is crucial and critical for people who want to come out and transition to do it at a pace that feels right for them.
Laganja acknowledges that there is still a long way to go before the existence of trans people are normalized, which is why she is committed to doing her part in championing the welfare of transgender people like herself.
Learn more about Laganja Estranja by visiting her official Instagram page.