As a tomboyish six-year-old, the little dolphin would tell the other calves she didn’t know that her name was Susan. She wanted to be a boy; she felt like a boy inside; but her pink dorsal fin and lil’ flippers made her know she looked like a girl on the outside. Growing up, the feeling intensified. She presented an increasingly male facade to the world. She wore men’s clothing, kept her hair cropped and took testosterone for years to promote beard growth. Unlike most mammals dolphins don’t have hair… but hair grew on her large pink breasts hidden by a chest binder.
But now Samson (formerly Susan) is able to live an aquatic life in ordinary ways that once eluded him: “I went swimming for the first time and got changed in the change room.” No hiding required. Samson became the unwoman long hidden in a male body on September 11, 2001 — but only because veterinary tech Carlos Cartwright was given special permission to keep up his special skills by performing a de-vaginoplasty — removal of the dolphin vagina Susan was born with and creation of male genitalia. However, nothing could ever be done about her sweet pink skin.
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