Jake Zyrus on His Transition and How He Chose His New Name

Plus his message to family members who aren't happy with his coming out.


(SPOT.ph) In June, Jake Zyrus (formerly known as Charice Pempengco) debuted his new name to the world, changing all of his social media handles while he was at it. A few days later, he sat down for an interview with ABS-CBN's MJ Felipe to share how he chose his name.


His search actually began in front of a mirror, saying, "Nagbabanggit lang ako ng names. Tapos noong nabanggit ko iyong Jake, parang may kurot sa puso mo na parang ito iyong gusto ko para sa akin." The Zyrus, he said, he added because he wanted two new names.



He likened his decision to being "reborn," but stressed that he has yet to have his name legally changed. In a previous interview with SPOT.ph, Nick Fernandez, a former chairman of PinoyFTM, echoed Jake's sentiments, saying, "Name changes are one of the most significant points in a transgender person's life. Unlike haircuts or a change of clothing style, name changes often mean that the transition is taking a deeper and more personal level."


In the same interview, Jake said that he is still "carefully thinking about" sex reassignment surgery, but confirmed that he is already undergoing hormone therapy, adding, "[My voice] is getting deeper."



In a separate interview with Boy Abunda, he responded to his grandmother, who strongly expressed her disapproval. "Kung ano man 'yong nabitawang salita ng lola ko sa akin, tinatanggap ko po iyon dahil mahal ko po sila. Nauunawan ko," he said. "I know that someday, no matter what, makikita rin ng lola ko 'yong happiness na nararamdaman ko."


Jake added that he just wanted his transition to serve as an inspiration to fellow transgender people who still feel they aren't ready. "Gusto ko ring malaman nila na hindi sila nag-iisa, na kung kinaya ko eh kakayanin din nila."


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