'She's very flirty': Big Brother contestant Rodrigo Lopes has started living his life as a woman named Rebekah
08:58 GMT, 13 March 2012
Big Brother contestant Rodrigo Lopes has started living his life as a woman named Rebekah.
The Brazilian student, 26, who came fifth on series 10 of the Channel 4 show in 2009, has started dressing up in heels on nights out and is now planning gender reassignment surgery.
He hit headlines for his on/off relationship with co-star
Charlie Drummond as they became the show's 'first gay couple' after
having a bath together, followed by a passionate embrace in the bedroom.
Spot the difference: Season 10 Big Brother contestant Rodrigo Lopes has started living his life as a woman named Rebekah and will undergo gender reassignment surgery
In a new interview, the reality star spoke about his journey for his new life.
'I’ve always felt like I had a woman inside of me, always,' he told Heat magazine.
'But I used to hide it. I’ve always liked make-up, treatments and other womanly things, and I was 18 when I first started experimenting. But early this year I told my best friend Andrea how I was really feeling.
'She encouraged me. When I came back
to the UK I started wearing my friends’ clothes first, then I began
shopping for them. People in the shops were surprisingly normal about
it. Now I go out with a transvestite I made friends with. She’s very
glam. We go to straight clubs and get a lot of attention.'
said he has an appointment with a doctor next week and is looking into
hormone treatment, but worries about what his family will say.
Flashback: He hit headlines for his on/off relationship with co-star Charlie Drummond as they became the show's 'first gay couple'
'I’ve called up the helpline and spoken to a doctor about it. But I’m still worried about my parents in Brazil and whether or not they would accept me. It’s hard for me. It’s not an easy decision or a joke.
Out now: Rodrigo features in this week's Heat
'The doctor tells you that you should live as a woman for a year before you make any big decision about surgery, so that’s what I’m doing.
'I’m becoming more sure every day. What
makes me like it more is the attention Rebekah is getting – people
really like her. I don’t know if it will be difficult. But it wouldn’t
make that much difference. I’m not that masculine.'
When asked if he fancies gay or straight men, Rodrigo answered: 'Straight men, mostly. I don’t even know whether I’m gay, lesbian or straight. But Rebekah is straight. She likes straight men.'
The star said he has chosen the name Rebekah Shelton for his altar ego.
Rebekah because he simply 'loves' the name, and Shelton because it is the last name if his English family, who he lived with when he first moved over from Brazil.
He described Rebekah as a 'a very modern woman'.
'She likes to pay her own way and not have doors opened for her. She’s flirty, but would never go home with someone on the first date. She’s very short-tempered, too! She’s much madder than I could ever be – once, she tried to take her high heel and throw it in a man’s face.'
Read the full interview with Rodrigo in this week's Heat magazine, out now