R. Kelly’s 14-year-old child Jaya has announced that he is female-to-male transgender via social media and has changed his name to simply Jay.
Jay, who was born a biological female, said in his Ask.fm profile that he’s identified as a boy since he was “6 or 7” years old.
R. Kelly has yet to speak to him since the revelation. Jay said he is not close with his R&B singer father. Andrea Kelly, Jay’s mother and R Kelly’s ex-wife, has known of Jay’s decision for over a year and has been supportive, proudly sharing pictures of her with her son online.
Jay said of his family’s reaction to the news:
My mom was like, “Baby, you know I love you if you were bi, gay, lesbian, you name it and I would still love you so much.” She was very proud of me, I was like, “Thank you mom for accepting the fact that I’m a transgender.”
And same with my sister, she told me that she was proud of me, and respects me by calling me handsome and calling me her little brother now, and I love her for that, so you know it was great for me.
I absolutely love my mother… and yea, my dad has not reached out.
Both Jay and his sister are not close with their father, although their older brother is.
Jay said he is eager to undergo gender realignment surgery to complete his gender transition, but knows that he’ll still have to wait several years.
He also explained that he realized early on that he was attracted to women, but doesn’t plan on having relationships any time soon, saying he has “too much on my plate.”