Wednesday 26 July 2017

WATCH: 'I'm still me' - Heartwarming moment coach comes out to his team as transgender

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

This is the touching moment a football coach announced to his young team that he was born a woman.

In the seven minute clip, originally posted to Facebook,  Kaig Lightner told his Portland, Oregon team that he is transgender and went on to explain what that is.

"We ask a lot of you guys to show up and be yourselves and be who you are and get to be better players, and I haven’t totally shared with you something about myself that’s important," Lighner said at the start of the video.

"Some of you may or may not know this, but I am transgender,” he explained. “So what that means is ... that I was born a girl and that I grew up playing soccer as a girl. And that’s not something I share with players or people in the sports world very often because it’s not an easy thing.

"We have a lot of rules in sports about how boys play and how girls play and that’s not really fair. I got told a lot of things about being a soccer player as a girl — that I couldn’t do this, I couldn’t do that. I wasn’t good enough. I wasn’t strong enough, or I was too strong — I acted too much like a boy."

Lighner, who stepped down from a previous couching position at 26 to begin his transition, told Buzzfeed News that he came out to practice what he preaches.

"I started to realize that the players I see every day — whom I love like my own family — weren’t getting to really know who I am and yet I expected them to show up to practice and be authentic, vulnerable, real, and work hard for me and the other coaches," he said.

"That felt inauthentic."

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