After five decades of hiding her true self, Denise Bowker decided to transition into the woman she was always meant to be. The Brave Files.

Isolation • Clarity • Disbelief

show notes:

A Life In Hiding


Imagine hiding the person you truly are for five decades.


That was the reality for this weeks guest, Denise Bowker.


Today, we celebrate Denise's bravery which is evident throughout her journey of transition. Proudly, Denise steps courageously into the world every day as the person she is meant to be.



Uncertain Beginnings


From the young age of four, Denise experienced gender dysphoria – – Gender dysphoria is a prolonged discomfort with the gender a person is assigned at birth.


Simply put, Denise always felt they were meant to be born a woman.


In spite of this, Denise chose to continue living as a man. First, they married a woman. Next, they had children. On the outside, they lived a seemingly happy life.



A Million Little Celebrations


Denise never felt trapped in the wrong body. Nonetheless, she always knew she was meant to be a woman. Her transition undoubtedly changed everything; however, her overall experience was positive.


Thankfully, her family and community are supportive.


Undoubtedly, transitioning in the workplace is oftentimes terrifying. Nevertheless, Denise stepped forward with bravery.



Proudly Denise


As a transgender woman, Denise owns her place in the world. Additionally, she understands the immeasurable value of a close mentor as a transgender person.


She wants others to know they are not alone.


Today, Denise is active in the LGBTQ+ community in Chicago. She speaks publicly, sharing her story and experience as a transgender woman.


If you need support, Denise invites you to email her at


Other resources mentioned in Denise’s interview
After five decades of hiding her true self, Denise Bowker decided to transition into the woman she was always meant to be. The Brave Files Podcast.
Top Takeaways:
  • You are not alone.
  • Everyone experiences things differently, this is ok!
  • There are a lot of successes along the path of a transgender person.
  • Be the voice for others when they aren’t around.
Giving Is Good!

Undoubtedly, Denise understands the importance of a support system. As a result, she supports Anchor House in Trenton, New Jersey.  The organization provides a safe place for homeless or at-risk youth to turn to for support and resources. LGBTQ+ youth make up a large percentage of those who come to Anchor House because, sadly, many families turn away their own LGBTQ+ children. This, unfortunately, leaves youth with no support system in place.


Every year, Anchor House organizes Ride For Runaways, a 500-mile bike ride to raise funds for runaway kids. Denise participates, and is asking for your support! You can donate directly to Denise's fundraising page here.

Denise Bowker does a 5---mile bike ride to raise money for runaway LGBTQ youth. The Brave Files Podcast.
After five decades of hiding her true self, Denise Bowker decided to transition into the woman she was always meant to be. The Brave Files.

Denise shared a Before-and-After photo with us!

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