Have you ever wondered why you were different?
My name is James Nimmo, I am an XXY male and I am from Auckland, New Zealand. A question I started asking myself once I hit puberty, thinking back I would have been about 13 years old. Throughout high school, I was bullied, teased, and called every name under the sun. I was a shy kid, no confidence, and really unsure about myself. On top of all of this, I had extreme body issues, I was skinny, I had no muscle and no shape to my body. People often accused me of having eating disorders and at one stage I did. Not because I thought I was fat, but merely because I had a sense of control.
I remember going through puberty, all of my friends started getting body hair and well that didn’t happen for me, I often asked myself what is wrong with me? Then I noticed I didn’t have balls (testicles), well they were very small, like little peanuts which most XXY male men have. But basically nonexistent. Something that made me extremely self-conscious.
At the age of 17 I came out of the closet (I’m gay), a lot of the bullying I endured through school was because of this, I was different. Coming out was finally a start to me being true to myself. Even though I was shy and really had no confidence what I did have was a thick skin, I’ve always been very resilient so I never looked into or sought out medical advice as to why I had no testicles, I thought that it was just me.
At 20 years old I joined the gym for the first time, I remember flicking through the fitness magazines and wishing so badly that I looked like the fitness models, their perfect physiques, ripped abdominals. I convinced myself that if I looked like them then I would be liked, I would be accepted. Especially in the gay world because it can be such a vain world. For about 4 years I yoyo’d through a fitness journey of group fitness classes and minimal weights. From about the age of 24/ 25 I really started weight training, but really struggled to gain any muscle mass at all. I’ve probably tried every protein mass gainer on the market, along with every kind of diet imaginable.
At the age of 29 years old, and at much persuasion from my partner at the time (now ex-partner) I decided that I would finally see a doctor and start asking all the “why questions”. I had numerous tests, my doctor even told me that I may have cancer. I had scans, MRIs, etc (I didn’t have cancer), but what I was diagnosed with was Klinefelter syndrome (also known as XXY), something I had never ever heard of before. After being diagnosed with Klinefelter syndrome everything started making sense, I struggled to gain muscle because my body was producing little to no testosterone which is another common symptom for XXY male men. This kicked off my decision to heavily invest time in learning about health & exercise further and really take control of my life in a positive way. I changed the way I lived, and the way I treated my body by eating real, nutritious whole foods, and strength training with a purpose. Throughout the years in both 2016 & 2019, I set goals for myself to compete in fitness competitions. This inspired me to go back and study and complete a Double Diploma in Fitness/ Nutrition & Business. I am now a qualified Fitness Professional both face to face and online to help and inspire others to achieve their health & fitness goals, but also to help other XXY male men to achieve what I was thought was the impossible. I am contactable through Instagram @jamesnimmo_fitness and my own website which will be launching soon.
The most important thing that I hope would be taken away from reading my story as an XXY male is to never give up, whatever the struggle is., whatever the struggle is. You are so much stronger than you think you are, you matter and you are enough! Love the body that you are in. Not anyone can take these things away from you.