Charles Blake has dominated his first major competition, taking on the South African International in Cape town and making history as the first Non-Cis, Double-Transgendered, Heteronormative Male (NCDTHM) to compete in the event.
Blake was assigned the gender “male” at birth based on his anatomical sex, but he identifies as a biologically female woman who identifies with the male gender and is sexually attracted to biologically female women who identify as women.
The 32-year-old won the men’s 85kg division at the Cape Town event, setting two unofficial national records in the process. Blake’s win is considered a pioneering moment in sport for the LBGT community.
“I’m just thankful our progressive society realizes that just because I was born as a man, dress like a man, compete as a man, and am attracted to women, my gender identity isn’t simple,” Blake told reporters after his victory.
“My gender identity is far more complicated and fluid than most people think.”
Blake’s performance has qualified him for the African Championships in July, where he will undoubtedly face stronger competitors in the 85k men’s division.
“Between now and July, I may begin to identify as a female who identifies as a female. If that happens, I’ll be competing in the women’s 90kg division.”
Despite Blake’s acceptance within the International Weightlifting Federation, he feels that society has farther to go before the NCDTHM community will be fully accepted.
“We won’t really be enlightened as a society until every weightlifter on the podium at the Olympics is biologically male but identifies as some other gender.”