[Video] Husband Learns Wife was Born a Man, Wants Annulment

After 19 years of marriage the husband believes he’s “been assaulted.”

A man named Jan can no longer stay married to his wife Monica. According to this piece in The Telegraph, the 64-year-old Belgian man said he thought his Indonesian wife “…was an attractive woman, all woman. She had no male traits.” The couple decided not to have children because he already had two from a previous marriage. And Monica pretended to menstruate in order to “conceal the truth.”

Various perspectives emerged from articles, some highlighted how the wife hid the sex change while others focused on the man’s response. Twitter contained a host of perspectives and opinions as well, including a radical conservative’s dig on Barack and Michelle Obama’s relationship:


–Photo: proimos/Flickr
About Cameron Conaway

Cameron Conaway is a former MMA fighter, an award-winning poet and the 2014 Emerging Writer-in-Residence at Penn State Altoona. He is the author of Caged: Memoirs of a Cage-Fighting Poet, Bonemeal: Poems, Until You Make the Shore and Malaria, Poems. Conaway is also on the Editorial Board at Slavery Today. Follow him on Google+ and on Twitter: @CameronConaway.


  1. He had his trust violated he has every right to be angry its not that he is a trans phobic man its just their relationship was founded on a lie. That is never good.

  2. Mr Supertypo says:

    well I understand him, his reaction is legittimate. I cant blem him :-/

  3. The Original Story broke 23 November – and the full text of the original shows a right pair of characters. I’m not sure if anyone could ever untie the Gordian Knot of blame or what ever and that goes with this pair.

    The original news story (Link) from Het Nieuwsblad – Antwerp – Belgium – has a great deal more detail, and Google Translate makes it comprehensible, with some odd lines that can be unwittingly comical.

    “She then announced that she was born as a boy and that she had to operate.” Even in context it gets you wondering about gender roles and how they are seen. Mechanical language and attitudes are always odd and can be funny.

  4. The deception is pretty horrible. All people deserve to know the truth of their partners, especially those who are seeking to have children the natural way. Not everyone wants to date trans people, and that is completely their choice and fine so lying about that is a huge breach of trust.

  5. I would say that “assaulted” is more than a stretch but in light of not being told something so major I don’t blame him for wanting nothing else to do with her.

    (And I’m a bit curious as to why the pic for this article is a facepalm .)

    • Danny – it would appear that the use of the word Assault is very valid. Don’t forget that there is some rather heavy time lag in the story hitting the wires due to it coming from Belgium – the major news coverage is in French and Dutch (Also German) and getting valid translations is taking time.

      However – the man concerned has been on the record that it has been a “Physical Assault” and the equivalent of a “Physical Assault” – that to him there are very real physical reactions which he likens to the aftermath of being Physically Assaulted. There are also emerging issues of domestic abuse too.

      The issues of deception, and intent to deceive, are more expansive that first reported and with any revelations of this magnitude each new one and it’s integration into both reality and cognition is recognised to result in Physical Sensations which are similar to Shell Shock – Concussive Trauma.

      So sorry, but he’s the one using the word – and whether it’s alliterative or descriptive it is valid until it’s shown he has not been physically assuaged or his perceptions of degree and chosen language are wrong.

      It is interesting that under so many circumstances people have been told – now taught – now conditioned to see and use language in particular ways around the issues of sex, sexuality, gender and assault – and worst if any male uses language which is about their experience it has to get questioned and even dismissed. It’s easy to explain a knee jerk – it’s very hard to figure out just how brain washed some people are. So when people automatically question if what he’s saying about himself and his experience is valid – well it’s just good old fashioned Sexism.

  6. wellokaythen says:

    In the original brief article, there are some complicating factors at work, as if it wasn’t complicated enough. There are immigration issues involved, considering her papers were inaccurate or at least imprecise. The story mentions some concerns about infidelity and some tension over her behavior with other men. Whatever the reasons for seeking an annulment, her secret sex change is not the only reason why he wants out of the marriage. I suspect even if she were a cis-woman that his marriage was already in some trouble.

  7. Well – when you do the homework it turns out that the trans issue is really just icing on a pretty rotten cake.

    The – er — lack of candour issue goes all the way back to the point where they first met. There were immigration issues which had been fought out and won where the government had been worried about such things as validity – authenticity – forgery of birth certificate, identity papers and passports. It’s rather nasty finding out that you have been made a liar of in court to cover up someone else’s legal issues. It’s even worse when it’s a family member – and a spouse tops the bill.

    There is a long standing pattern of deception here that goes back a long, long way.

    Also there is the issue of some infidelity issues and playing away from home.

    In so many ways this looks like a very ordinary and run of the mill break up and divorce – except the lies, deception and false presentation was around gender and not just “Of Course I Love You”.

  8. John Anderson says:

    I think having had a sex change is a fairly relevant thing to mention to a potential spouse, but even if there is no moral dereliction in with holding the information, who one associates with should be voluntary. He absolutely has the right to seek termination of his marriage.

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