A man from Pennsylvania is living proof that love indeed knows no gender as he stuck by his childhood sweetheart and married him after he came out as transgender.
In a report by South West News Service carried by the New York Post, 24-year-old Ryan Smith had his fateful meeting with his partner Elvis back when they were just 12-years-old.
Elvis identified as female at the time, but eventually, he came out as a nonbinary transgender man when he reached the age of 19.
As he started to want to appear more masculine, he was overwhelmed with fear in telling Ryan his orientation.
"I was terrified Ryan would break up with me when I told him I was nonbinary and transgender, but he was immediately supportive,” Elvis recounted to the news outlet.
The 23-year-old artist began cutting his hair short, binding his chest, and dressing more masculine in March last year. However, he hadn't started his hormone treatment yet because of his autoimmune disease, but said that he is hoping to take them soon, as well as having chest surgery.
He told Ryan that it was okay if he wanted to end their relationship if he didn't like his true self, but instead, he received a pleasant suprise when Ryan went down on his knee and proposed to him a few weeks after he came out.
"He never signed up for a husband, and we talked a lot about the future physical changes I wanted to make. But every time, he was just supportive," Elvis said.
He went on, "We’ve had many tearful conversations because I know he once had the expectation of a bride in a dress, but he’s been so onboard."
Meanwhile, Ryan acknowledged that the journey hasn't been a breeze to adjust to, and he has had some moments where he was worried about the dynamics in their relationship.
“I’ve always viewed myself as straight and I was worried that I wouldn’t be attracted to someone who looked and dressed masculine. But we’re getting through it. We’ve always talked about having kids and when Elvis came out, it became a little more confusing as to what that would look like," Ryan said.
But he highlighted that "Elvis is so much happier and more themselves now, so that’s actually more attractive."
The couple eloped four months later in July and have gushed about their excitement in starting a family, with Elvis sharing that they have looked into surrogacy, adoption, and fostering children.
“We can’t wait to have kids together, but we don’t know what that will look like for us yet. When Ryan and I first started dating, I’m not sure this is what he expected. But we had to adjust our expectations, and we’ve found that this relationship still works for us," Elvis said.