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Feeling like you’re trapped inside your own body sounds like a nightmare, but it’s something that many transgender people deal with every day.

Even though they feel like they were born in the wrong bodies, some never come out or decide to openly transition because they’re concerned about how they’ll be treated. That’s why this woman’s journey is so inspiring.

Imgur user Selgal lived most of her life as a man, but she made the courageous choice to become her true self when she started college. She was around 18 years old when she began male-to-female hormone replacement therapy (HRT), during which a biologically male patient is given estrogen, antiandrogen, and progestogen to help change their physical characteristics into those of a female. Selgal documented her transformation over the course of 17 months, and you definitely have to see it to believe it.

This is Selgal at 16 years old, when she says she was still “pretending to be a boy.”

Two years later, she started growing her hair out, going to college, and documenting the effects of the HRT. “I always kept checking the mirror to see if I noticed any changes. But it turns out it takes a pretty long time for anything major so I was in for a long ride,” she said.

“3 months HRT, starting to feel better. Still depressed but finally starting to feel like me.”

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