WATCH: Beauty Queen Gives Up Miss America Dream to Live as a Man

Ashton Colby is a 23-year-old man from Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his straight girlfriend and, as a teenager, used to compete in beauty pageants with the dream of becoming Miss America.

Ashton does not reveal his original female name, but says that as a teenager his blonde hair and female body were the envy of all. Ashton competed in beauty pageants at the age of 17, but secretly wanted to live life as a man.

One year after competing in the Miss Ohio competition, which would have led to a run for Miss America, Ashton decided to start taking testosterone hormones instead of competing. He also underwent a double mastectomy in 2013.

Now Ashton is talking about his transition, and the struggles he faced while coming to terms with his gender identity.

“Being this beautiful blonde girl wasn’t really who I was inside,” said Ashton. “I’m much happier as a man and I don’t miss the dresses and makeup. I love having stubble and biceps! This is my true self.”

He said being an attractive woman made it all the more difficult for him to transition, but that his father was very accepting, and his mother also came to support the process of his transitioning.

Now he faces the decision of whether or not to undergo a sexual gender-reassignment surgery.

He has been on testosterone for over three years now, and has shared the transition experience in the video above.

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