A former WWE pro wrestler, who has been featured on WrestleMania, Raw, and SmackDown, just came out as transgender. Her name is Gabbi Tuft, and she shared the news of her transition in a powerful statement on Instagram.
“This is me. Unashamed, unabashedly me,” Gabbi wrote. “This is the side of me that has hidden in the shadows, afraid and fearful of what the world would think; afraid of what my family, friends, and followers would say or do.”
“I am no longer afraid and I am no longer fearful. I can now say with confidence, that I love myself for WHO I am.”
Gabbi, who previously wrestled under the professional stage name “Tyler Reks,” said that the months leading up to her decision to come out were “some of the darkest of [her] life”:
The previous eight months have been some of the darkest of my entire life. The emotional turmoil of being transgender and having to face the world has almost ended me on multiple occasions. However, the day I stopped caring about what other people thought, was the day I truly became limitless and allowed my authentic self to come into the light.
“I don’t expect everyone to agree or understand,” she continued. “It’s not my place to change any of your core beliefs. Just know that the outer shell may change, but the soul remains the same.”
“I promise to always be transparent and truthful with my journey, and to be a light to those that are in need. This is me.”
Gabbi and her wife Priscilla also sat down for an interview on Extra, where Gabbi opened up about why she decided to go public with her transition.
“With everything that I’m going through and that I have been through, knowing how emotionally distressful it can be, because like I said, there have been some dark nights, I promise that I will share my story because knowing that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel can just be that ray of hope that keeps somebody with us, that keeps them alive, and lets them know, ‘Yes, I can do this, too.'”
And on her Instagram story, Gabbi shared how happy she was to finally share her authentic self: “This is probably the most exciting day of my life, next to the birth of my child and my wedding day, and I have to just say really quickly, that I am amazed at the overwhelming show of support.”
Thank you, Gabbi, for sharing your story with the world — it will help so many others. You can read her full statement on Instagram.