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Japan’s world boxing champ struggles with sex identity

Go Shindo conquers bullying, alcoholism and suicidal thoughts to come out.

Avatar of Alessia Valenza

6th October 2013 01:09

Alessia Valenza

In May, 26-year-old Go Shindo, often likened to comic strip sailor Popeye’s girl Olive because of her scrawniness, became the world women’s boxing flyweight champion, thrashing defending champion Renata Szebeledi of Hungary.

However, that knockout was only part of Shindo’s battles.After the victory, the 26-year-old remained seriously perturbed, wondering if she should continue to remain in women’s boxing since she felt like a man.

As a youngster, Shindo, born Megumi Hashimoto, was considered to be a tomboy, struggling to wear a skirt in school and falling in love with a senior girl student in high school. She says she was bullied in university, was discriminated against, and tried to drown her sorrows and frustration in drinks. At one point, she also thought of killing herself.

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