She was born a male but for the majority of her life has identified as female.
Now in her 60s, Boudreau has finally come out as a male-to-female transgender.
However, the road getting here has not been a smooth one.
“I was chronically unhappy and miserable and unfulfilled because I didn’t do the one thing I wanted to,” Boudreau said.
She describes her younger self as a “confused 3 or 4-year-old who thinks he’s a girl.”
Boudreau eventually married before enrolling in a transgender transition group at the University of Minnesota when she was around 40 years old.
She attended for about eight months before dropping out because of concerns about her career and a marriage that was about to end.
Boudreau said that was also a time when being transgender was not as openly discussed as it is today.
“The 1990s are very different than they are now,” Boudreau said. “We were totally not accepted, we were freaks, we weren’t even accepted in what later became the LGBT community, that didn’t happen till around the 2000s even.”
Eventually, Boudreau retired and finalized her divorce. She moved to St. George about nine years ago.
It was after that move that she decided to make a full transition.
“Once I realized I could do it and could appear as a decent appearing woman in public then I went kind of full speed ahead,” Boudreau said. “Most people keep this stuff very, very private…but I feel it’s important people become more aware of us and get to know us and feel a little more comfortable around us.”
Boudreau legally changed her name May 12 and started living as a woman fulltime in March.
She will have to live fulltime as woman for at least one year before being eligible for surgery. Now she is just waiting for the year to be up.
And while she knows many people that haven’t gone through with having surgery, she said this is very important for her.
Since she has started living as a female, Boudreau said she has been surprisingly well-accepted.
She teaches organic chemistry at Dixie State University and said her students have also been very receptive when she told them she is transgender.
“I actually thought when I was thinking of doing this I should probably move but I’m glad I didn’t,” Boudreau said.
In hopes of raising more awareness about being transgender, Boudreau will be speaking at the St. George American Association of University Women’s luncheon Nov. 9.
Transgender: A Personal Perspective will be the topic for Boudreau’s presentation.
Along with sharing her experience with gender dysphoria, Boudreau said she also wants to discuss the difficulties for the transgender community.
Boudreau said 41 percent of transgender people attempt suicide at least once in their lifetime.
She said more than 40 percent of hate crimes against the LGBTQ community are committed against transgender individuals.
This luncheon is part of the AAUW’s Women and Courage program for this month. St. George AAUW President Donna Howell said they chose Boudreau to come and speak because she has exemplified this characteristic throughout her life.
“She’s a very genuine, a very bright, articulate woman and she has had the courage to move her life into the position it is now,” Howell said. “We’re expecting it be enlightening and hopefully all of us will come away with the courage to move forward as well.”
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