Up until three years ago, my life was pretty settled. I lived in Kent with my now ex-partner and his Nan. I had a good job that I loved and had good friends around me but that all changed quickly when my ex cheated on me and our relationship broke down.

It was difficult at the time because I had to uproot my entire life. Saying goodbye to my friends and leaving my job was really hard. Also at the time, one of my very clever friends was helping me to learn more around being transgender. She helped simplify things for me around procedures, etc. during a confusing time. I was also receiving support with my mental health in Kent so I had to leave that behind as well.

I came to Wales to live with my mum, her partner and my siblings. It was already a squeeze before I moved in, so as soon as I moved in I felt like I was adding extra pressure on everyone, but I really didn’t have any other choice. Things would often get tense because we were living under each other’s feet. There was no privacy for me or my mum because we slept in the same room. Life became different for us all.

I approached my local housing office and explained the situation. Not long after, my Support Worker from Llamau, Emily, called me. She told me I was classed as ‘at risk of homelessness’ and that she’d be working with me to help prevent me becoming homeless, which made me feel better.

During my final month at home with Mum and my siblings, we did have arguments, but we all did our best not to let it get too bad. Mum and I have a strong bond, it was just that living together was too hard for us.

I couldn’t believe it the day Emily called me and told me a property had been found for me. I felt excited and nervous at the same time and it felt like Emily felt the same for me. It was a big step for me, as I’d never lived alone before. I felt so unsettled and sad after moving to Wales, so to see a pathway forming for me was great. I now live in a lovely one bedroom flat, with beautiful views. Very different views to what I saw outside my windows in Kent. I’ve been able to make it a home.

Emily helped me with so much more than just finding my new home. Through Llamau, she took me along to an LGBTQ+ Peer Support group. Not knowing anyone in Wales, it was really difficult to talk about my gender but this group helped me open up and built courage and confidence in me. Emily was the best person to help me come out of my shell and to try different things. She made moving to Wales so much easier.

I’m now transitioning into my new identity, which has given me a confidence boost. My family are very supportive as is my boyfriend. Everyone around me has offered to help me every step of the way. I have a feeling that my depression will get better now that I’m taking positive steps forward. The journey ahead is scary, but I know it’ll be worth it and I’ll be happy.