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Joe Holliday

On the advice of doctors, Joe Holliday was raised as a girl from the age of one and spent most of his life as Joella.

Joe was 25 when he finally discovered he had been born a boy and subsequently made the decision to live as a man.

Joe was born suffering cloacal exstrophy, a severe and rare birth defect which meant his abdominal region was catastrophically malformed and he had no penis.

He was originally christened Joel but then doctors advised his mother that he ought to be raised female and his name was changed to Joella.

When Joella was eight, she found out she had the birth certificate of a boy. Her family went on to fight and win an unprecedented public campaign to get Joella's gender changed to female on her birth certificate, arguing it had been a mistake to initially deem Joella male. Princess Diana was among those who supported the fight.

Joella battled years of mental anguish as she struggled to fit in as a woman.

It was as the result of a chromosome test that Joella finally discovered the truth. For the first time, Joella realised she was, in fact,  genetically male.


She’s a Boy