What Really Happened To The Pregnant Man?

In 2007, Thomas Beatie made headlines around the world when, having undergone hormone treatment in his early twenties to transition from female to male, he became the first documented legal male to become pregnant. Beatie later gave birth to one child in 2008 and two more in 2011, generating massive media attention and public fascination about him and his family's groundbreaking story. After years of nonstop scrutiny, the "Pregnant Man" has since taken a step back from life in the public eye. What prompted this departure?

Too much media attention

After a widely-viewed interview on Oprah in 2008, and numerous national and international television and print appearances, it's entirely possible that Beatie grew tired of having all eyes focused on him and his family. As the New York Times noted in a 2008 profile, "clips of Mr. Beatie's appearance on 'Oprah,' where he was filmed undergoing ultrasound, as well as shirtless images of him from an autobiographical feature in the Advocate magazine, were everywhere, and they were impossible to look away from."

Along with all the of the positive media attention, Beatie was lampooned in episodes of South Park and Saturday Night Live. (He was portrayed by Andy Samberg.)

People can also be cruel and judgmental, and in the wake of all the news around his private life, Beatie told Hollywood Life in 2012, "We have had a rough ride...We have had death threats, crazies. I've been called a freak. The really nasty stuff has come online, with email, Facebook and YouTube." Beatie continued, "Some of it has been terrifying...The FBI have been involved and they monitor things for us. The world is full of crazy people and we have to have our wits about us."

Perhaps it all got to be a bit too much for Beatie and his family.

He started a writing career

In 2008, Beatie penned a highly personal essay for The Advocate that movingly detailed his experiences becoming pregnant and giving birth. "Wanting to have a biological child is neither a male nor female desire, but a human desire," Beatie wrote. "How does it feel to be a pregnant man? Incredible. Despite the fact that my belly is growing with a new life inside me, I am stable and confident being the man that I am."

November that same year saw the release of his widely-praised book, Labor of Love: The Story of One Man's Extraordinary Pregnancy, published by Seal Press. Lauded as "defiant and transformative" by the New York Times and "unforced and unpretentious" by Booklist, the book propelled Beatie into a different phase as a public figure.

...and a TV career in France

Along with writing, Beatie made yet another career leap in 2016, leaving the U.S. for a period to take part in the tenth season of French reality TV series Secret Story. Beatie eventually revealed his big secret, previously unbeknownst to his cast mates, that he was the world's first pregnant man. Quelle surprise.

He even started a separate Twitter account to chronicle the experience (in French!).

He got divorced, and remarried

Beatie's marriage to the mother of his children, Nancy, ended after nine years in 2012, but not without its fair share of drama. The couple's divorce was initially blocked when Arizona's Maricopa County Family Court found that the marriage itself wasn't legal because of Thomas' status. As Reuters (via Huffington Post) reported, "Judge Douglas Gerlach denied the divorce on the grounds that Beatie had not shown he was a man when he wed in 2003, and thus could not show he and his wife were a heterosexual couple." In 2013, same-sex marriages were not recognized in Arizona.

However, according to Reuters (via Huffington Post), in 2013 the Arizona Court of Appeals "unanimously decided that the divorce [could] proceed because Thomas Beatie's 2003 marriage in Hawaii was considered legal in Arizona," and the couple moved ahead with their split. As Beatie himself notes, it was a landmark case, as "the outcome of Beatie v. Beatie...set a precedent for the ability of transgender people to get married, stay married, or be granted a divorce."

More turmoil followed in 2015–over teeth, no less. To settle things once and for all, Beatie was forced to hand over his prized shark tooth collection to Nancy, TMZ reported.

Once that was all said and done, four years after divorce proceedings began, Beatie found love once again with a woman named Amber Nicholas, who worked at his children's school. The couple was married in 2016, with Beatie gushing to the Daily Mail, "it feels wonderful to finally be Mr and Mrs Beatie."

He had three kids to care for

According to ABC News, Beatie's three children with Nancy Beatie, a daughter and two sons, were all born between June 2008 and July 2010 through artificial insemination using donor sperm.

In 2012, Beatie told the Mirror (UK) that he'd love to carry a child again: "I would have to have a ­caesarian, but I'd willingly do it to have ­another bundle of joy."

So far there haven't been any more babies for Beatie, but three kids will certainly keep you busy.

Trouble with the law

Beatie had a run-in with the law in 2015, which may have prompted a desire to take some time out of the public eye. According to the Associated Press (via ABC15 Arizona), he pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct in an Arizona Court after being accused of stalking his ex-wife Nancy with a GPS tracking device.

As the New York Daily News reported, "The victim told police Beatie appeared at spots she was and asked where she had been, making her afraid, according to court documents."

He's focusing on his public speaking career

Although he's mostly staying out of the limelight these days, Beatie is still busy building his public speaking career and fighting for transgender, LBTQ, and human rights issues. As he says, "[Beatie's] humanizing story represents the struggle everyone faces when fighting for individual authenticity and freedom as well as social and legal justice."

You might not catch him on Oprah anytime soon, but there's a chance he's coming to a college near you.