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Jakaelynn’s “Reverse Gestation,” and a poem

Heartfelt and passionate, these letters from Jakaelynn demonstrate her enormous capacity to remain a strong, transitioning trans woman while locked up (with a little help from her friends, and SRLP).

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Warning: The following letter describes experiences with Battered Partner Syndrome, and the murder and death of a loved one, and has not been edited in any way. Proceed with caution if you may be triggered by these topics.

“Reverse Gestation and the pains of a transgendered bitch!”
by Jakaelynn Rae Shakely,
Aka: “Pheanoix”.

For twenty-five years I’ve lived what I now call “reverse gestation,” learning slowly to “reverse” the false birth of me as “Alan M. Outman,” and to survive and overcome the “birth pains” of hate, discrimination, fear and isolation of the real me, Jakaelynn Rae Shakely, being born. Now due to two amazing trans-women: Synthia China Blast and Leslie Ann Manning, and the hope I’ve found in reading their copies of “In Solidarity,” and SRLP, I have finally successfully delivered this beautiful girl, and met my true self, face to face!

Enclosed is a transfigurative poem that I’ve written and call “See Her in my Eyes,” the story of my real, true and final birth as the woman God made me to be! It has been a long, hard and devastating journey, one that led me through many years of brutal sexual assaults and abuse at the hands of many individuals…and suffering from Battered Partner Syndrome that led me to be sentenced to Murder First Degree, and twenty-five to life…for finally protecting myself from an assault by my closeted, abusive, alcoholic fiancee, and then being denied my psychiatric BPS defense and coerced and defrauded into the subsequent plea-deal to avoid “Life Without Parole!” Reality is I may never leave prison due to the injustice I’ve suffered, and I will forever mourn my fiancee’s death at my hands…but there is always a light at the end of the tunnel and that for me is that fact that this horrific tragedy has finally helped me to release the binds that have held me captive for so long. Without coming in I never would have met China or Leslie Ann, and thus possibly never encountered SRLP, and never have found the courage to finally stop allowing society’s “gender lies” to control and destroy me.

In my getting to understand and “know” SRLP, I read Katherine Cross’s article in the Winter 2012-2013 edition [of In Solidarity], entitled “Unknown Rights Are No Rights At All”… and I was truly blown away by her message and voice! I completely agree and identify with the things she said. How can I have the right to “Life and the Pursuit of Happiness” afforded to me in the “Bill of Rights” if I’m denied the right to fully transition as a transgendered woman? And if I do not know that I have a right to transition with assistance and support, how are those rights anything more than an “airy abstract” (in the words of Ms. Cross), phantom!? Reading Ms. Cross’s article has given me a new role model, a woman that I admire, and wish I could “follow in her footsteps.” You see when I was arrested I was in my sophomore year pursuing my Bachelor’s degree in “Teaching English as a Second Language,” with the plan to eventually get my Masters and/or PHD in Sociology, and work with the LGBTQ community, especially immigrants. Ms. Cross is doing exactly what I’ve always dreamed of doing as not only a career, but a lifea cause! God Bless you, Ms. Cross, and I hope that one day we can meet, sit down to coffee, and talk about our visions for our community, country, and world!

My hope is that the pain, passion and soul I’ve poured into “See Her in my Eyes” moves all of you as much as it does me, that it might touch the life of another transgendered woman/women who may be too scared to take that final step of faith, to be whom you’re meant to be! Whether it is published or not, I truly hope all of the SRLP staff have the chance to read it and know that they’ve helped yet another woman find her way into this world. 😀 I don’t know what to expect ahead of me, not sure exactly how to begin and walk this journey…especially in prison. But one thing I do know is that I’ll never have to do it alone!

Thank you for giving me life! 🙂


See her in my eyes,”

by Jakaelynn Rae Shakely.

It took prison bars and violence rising,

to discover who I am. Years of psychological

isolation to free myself of that emotional and social ban!


Working and slaving in public service,

always hiding whom I am… Now my devotion and sacrifice

have been discarded with the click of cuffs, and the

gavel’s ringing slam.


No more! Enough I say!

Why should I bend and be who you demand me to be…

When even then your hate and blindness still force me

to Flee?!

Born a “man” but always a LADY…now

that is whom I truly am! Yes sir, yes ma’am.

Will you come and stand at my side,

Through a support and love?

Together Hand In Hand

If not, then step aside…

And close your eyes…

For you shall never again control whom I am!

…Jakaelynn Rae…


“Heartbreak Boy”

Can you see her in my eyes? For that is what’s in my

heart and soul… You’re not my potter and I am not

built of molding clay!

So never again will I live your…

Societal Gender Lies!!!

Twenty-four years of “reverse gestation,”

Jakaelynn Rae is finally born…

Born this late October Day!

Dedicated to the two beautiful transgendered women whom… were my courage and inspiration… whom have been my “emotional mid-wives”: Synthia China Blast and Leslie Ann Manning!

Fight for Love and Life!
Jakaelynn Rae Shakely aka: “Pheanoix”



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The Sylvia Rivera Law Project (SRLP) works to guarantee that all people are free to self-determine gender identity and expression, regardless of income or race, and without facing harassment, discrimination or violence.

This blog, which features letters from our Prisoner Advisory Committee (PAC) members, is just one way we overcome the enormous state-created barriers to communication and political participation for the people who are most affected by the prison system.

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