About Big Sisters...

We were lucky enough to stay on in Marbella after Katie’s surgery to allow her to recover before flying back to the UK. As Katie got stronger we were able to go out and about, always being carful of the sun, lots of face cream and a big floppy hat for Katie to protect her face

On one of our outings, we took a taxi into Old Marbella town, a lovely area to shop, eat and just visit where the atmosphere is amazing. We’d been shopping for most of the afternoon and decided to take a break. We wandered up to the famous Orange Square to get a drink and something to eat at a traditional tapas bar and sat outside in the warm afternoon sun.

Katie said again, as she had throughout the day, how lucky she felt to have someone who would go with her and help her find the right clothes to wear. To say what looked ok what looked good and what looked dreadful, both colour and style-wise. Just normal everyday clothes, that was all she wanted, to be able to dress like a woman and to pass and be accepted. She explained how hard that was for her because she’d grown up learning how to wear boys clothes and to cover up who she actually was. 

She didn’t have the confidence to know if clothes looked right, having the courage to go out thinking that you might be laughed at, stared at and called names because you’d got it wrong. She had spent years trying to get help and struggling to find the right support for this part of the journey. From the failed trips to make up artists that charged a lot of money and made her look like a drag queen, to the online clothes suppliers who seemed to think all she wanted was short skirts and ridiculous heels.

I explained that what most women wear are comfortable but smart casual clothes. Clothes that can be dressed up or down with the addition of a good piece of jewellery or a scarf, different coloured tights or heels instead of boots.

So, chatting over our drinks Katie said ‘You know what would be really great Jan, if everyone could have someone like you to help them. It’s like you’re my big sister’. Sitting there in that beautiful setting, in the warm afternoon sun in old Marbella town, 4 weeks and 2 days after Katie’s facial feminisation surgery was the precise moment that Big Sisters was born.