Nikkie De Jager, known as NikkieTutorials on Youtube, came out as transgender in a video titled “I’m Coming Out” on Jan 30 and has since gained more than 30 million views. De Jager said she was forced to come out, after someone threatened to reveal her secret.
In the video, De Jager shared her experience transitioning and how her mother always supported her decision. She offered advice to younger trans people, as well as those struggling with self-identity. She said “It is 2020 and it is time for us to understand, accept, hear and respect.”
De Jager said she realized she was born in the wrong body at a young age. When she was 14 she started hormone therapy and was fully transitioned by 19. She said that she was planning to share this information with her fans, but never felt the time was right.
De Jager’s coming out was not her own decision, but was forced by an unknown man threatening to reveal her secret. In the video, De Jager said the man “wanted to leak my story to the press… because they feel like I’m too scared for people to know who I truly am.”
Since the video, police have identified the blackmailer, but De Jager has decided not to release the name. She said the man “already got their punishment. They’re gonna have that little bit of fear, that one day maybe their name is gonna leak to the press.”
Response from the public has been largely positive. Sophomore Nuha Talukder said, “People should stop saying she doesn’t even look trans. That’s really gross and sets a standard for what all trans women should look like.”
Two weeks after the original video was published, De Jager posted a second video titled “Responding to my Coming Out.” in which she addressed some questions from fans. She said she was anxious to post the original video and couldn’t leave her house for two days. She said, “It has been so much positivity. It has been so crazy and absolutely surreal.”
De Jager went on The Ellen Show a week after the video aired, where the women had a heartfelt conversation about acceptance and stigma, as well as self discovery. De Jager said, “It’s funny, because to me, I just always was so confused. I was like, ‘Why do I have to wear that, or why don’t I have long hair?” Celebrities, such as Kesha, James Charles and Shane Dawson have tweeted their support for her. Dani California, sister of Two Faced owner Jerrod Blandino, changed her Instagram bio to “Transgender, huh? That’s not the only thing she’s been LYING about.” Blandino said he fired his sister over the comment and issued a statement praising De Jager for her honesty.