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Androgynous model Andrej Pejic has revealed that she underwent sexual reassignment surgery (SRS) earlier this year and is now a transgender woman. She's also changed her first name to Andreja.
Though she has modeled for men's and women's clothing in the past, from now on she will be solely modeling womenswear.
"I figured out who I was very early on—actually, at the age of 13, with the help of the Internet—so I knew that a transition, becoming a woman, was always something I needed to do. But it wasn’t possible at the time, and I put it off, and androgyny became a way of expressing my femininity without having to explain myself to people too much."
The model further explained why this decision is important to her on a bigger scale, saying:
"I wasn’t ready to talk about it before in a public way because I was scared that I would not be understood. I didn’t know if people would like me. But now I’m taking that step because I’m a little older—I’m 22—and I think my story can help people. My goal is to give a human face to this struggle, and I feel like I have a responsibility."
She also discussed her name change:
"I added an "a" because it’s not a full transformation —it’s just an evolution. I thought about whether I should change it or not for a while. In the West, Andrej isn’t really a masculine name. But I think [the name change] is something that my mom really wanted because, traditionally, Andrej is a Christian Orthodox name, and in that religion, it’s definitely a male name. So I kept the "j" and added an "a," which actually becomes a name that I don’t think exists. But I wanted to keep the "j" because that’s me. That’s my name."
In addition to taking a bigger role in women's modeling, Andreja is also set to appear as a mermaid in Sofia Coppola's upcoming Little Mermaid adaptation!
We predict more great things in her future!
[Image via Style.com]