Hanne Gaby Odiele has made a very courageous announcement this week. She took to Instagram to announce that she is intersex. This means that Hanne was born internal testes and without a uterus or ovaries, so she was born genetically male but her external look appeared female. The condition is called androgen insensitivity syndrome.
She made the announcement to try and break the taboo around this condition and encourage people to talk about the topic. “It’s very important to me in my life right now to break the taboo,” Odiele told USA Today. “At this point, in this day and age, it should be perfectly all right to talk about this.”
The model wanted to make aware how invasive surgeries are often carried out on people who are intersex because they are afraid on the non-binary bodies they are born with. bShe had surgery to remove her undescended testicles at the age of 10 after doctors warned that they could cause cancer. At 18, she had additional surgery to reconstruct her vagina.
“I am proud to be intersex, but very angry that these surgeries are still happening, It’s not that big of a deal being intersex. If they were just honest from the beginning … it became a trauma because of what they did.”
The procedures caused a lot distress and she speaking out about her experiences she wants to discourage parents from putting their children through surgery if they don’t need it. She would like to people to embrace their natural bodies.
The model, who has starred in campaigns for Dior, Alexander Wang, Mulberry and walked the runway for Chanel, Givenchy and Prada. She is one of the first high-profile people to disclose her intersex status.
I am so pleased for her. I think it is amazing for her to make this announcement. I hope this encourages people to love themselves. I hope this gives people who are born intersex somebody to look up to and know that they are not alone.
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