Freddy McConnell

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Alfred "Freddy" Reuben McConnell (born September 1986)[1][2] is an English multimedia journalist. His journey to give birth as a trans man is detailed in the 2019 documentary Seahorse that premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival.[3] The documentary was directed by Jeanie Finlay.[4]

Education and career[edit]

McConnell is from Deal, Kent[5] and is a multimedia journalist for The Guardian.[6] He has a 2:1 undergraduate degree in Arabic from the University of Edinburgh.[7] He studied Arabic at a summer school at Middlebury College in the US in 2012,[8] and worked for the NGO Skateistan in Kabul, Afghanistan for six months during 2011, transitioning in public while there.[9][10]


Since childhood, McConnell experienced gender dysphoria. In 2010, at the age of 23, McConnell realized he was trans. He chose the names Freddy and Reuben after family members who lived in the 19th century.[11] He began testosterone treatment in April 2014 and underwent top surgery a year later in Florida.[6] He elected not to have a hysterectomy because of his possible interest in having children.[7] He described his experience of transitioning in a series of articles for the Guardian titled Self-made man during 2014-15.[12]

Court case[edit]

McConnell gave birth to a son, publicly known just as SJ, in January 2018. In September 2019, McConnell lost a High Court application to be described as father or parent on his child's birth certificate. Reports suggest that English common law requires those that give birth to be described as mother on the child's birth certificate.[13] This decision was later upheld at the Court of Appeal in April 2020.[14][15]

Four British newspaper publishers, Telegraph Media Group, Associated Newspapers, News Group Newspapers and Reach PLC, successfully applied to have an anonymity order affecting the case removed in July 2019.[16][17]


  1. ^ McConnell, Fred (2014-06-30). "The gift of a lifetime: how trans 'top surgery' changed my life". The Guardian. Retrieved 2019-09-26.
  2. ^ "@freddy.mcconnell". Instagram. 21 September 2021. Retrieved 17 October 2021.
  3. ^ Bramesco, Charles (2019-04-27). "Seahorse review – moving study of man who gave birth". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  4. ^ Anderson, Tre'vell (2019-04-28). "How And Why This Trans Man Carried And Gave Birth To His Own Child". Out. Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  5. ^ Perkins, Eleanor (2019-09-25). "Transgender dad and Seahorse star Freddy McConnell loses court case". Kent Online. Retrieved 2019-09-28.
  6. ^ a b Booth, Robert (2019-09-25). "Transgender man loses court battle to be registered as father". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  7. ^ a b Hattenstone, Simon (2019-04-20). "The dad who gave birth: 'Being pregnant doesn't change me being a trans man'". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  8. ^ McConnell, Fred (2015-01-06). "Why I would choose an immersion course over a language degree". The Guardian. Retrieved 2019-09-28.
  9. ^ McConnell, Fred (2015-03-12). "Trans life: fond memories of coming out in Afghanistan". The Guardian. Retrieved 2019-09-28.
  10. ^ Foster, Robert (March 11, 2013). "FREDDIE ON THE STREET...IN KABUL". Don't Panic.
  11. ^ McConnell, Fred (2015-05-14). "Trans life: how I plucked my new name from the family tree". The Guardian. Retrieved 2019-09-28.
  12. ^ McConnell, Fred. "Self-made man". The Guardian.
  13. ^ Wells, Andy (2019-09-25). "Transgender man who gave birth to boy loses legal fight to be recognised as father". Yahoo. Retrieved 2019-09-25.
  14. ^ R (Alfred McConnell) -v- The Registrar General for England and Wales and others [2020] EWCA Civ 559
  15. ^ Booth, Robert (April 29, 2020). "Transgender man loses appeal court battle to be registered as father". The Guardian.
  16. ^ Duffy, Nick (2019-07-16). "Judge quashes anonymity order protecting trans dad from British tabloids". PinkNews. Retrieved 2019-09-26.
  17. ^ Booth, Robert (2019-07-16). "Transgender man who gave birth loses high court privacy ruling". The Guardian. Retrieved 2019-09-26.

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