Christian Mattey ,32 a transgender soldier joined up as a woman called Private Claire Mattey has been awarded for 12 years military service.The soldier has been given an award for 12 years military service - 10 years as a woman and two as a man.
After ten years in the Army reserve, the corporal won the backing of army top brass to switch gender. Christian, from Swansea, is now a man after undergoing gender reassignment surgery.
He proudly wear his male soldier's uniform as a recruiter for the Royal Engineers.
Christian said he grew up wearing little girls' dresses and skirts - but always identified as a male. He said: “I identified as male from as young as three. All the kids on the street were lads and I would hang around with the boys.
Transgender Christian is now a burly bloke
“My mum asked me once, ‘Do you want to be a boy?’ I lied and told her ‘no’. “I would dress as a Roman soldier at seven and started becoming myself. “The last time I wore a dress was when I went to a family friend’s wedding - it was horrendous.
“I had a sit-down chat at either 14 or 15 and my mum was really supportive. “People say you have been so brave but I am being myself — I have a strong personality.” Claire signed up for the Army reserve when she was 20. She said: “I was quite masculine anyway so I flew under the radar. When I was 22 I plucked up the courage to speak to the GP.”
Christian as a child
Christian underwent treatment six months ago to make the transition and is on hormones. He would be eligible to serve on the frontline but a cruciate ligament injury means he cannot be sent to war.