My name is Leticia Del Rio, and I am 26 years old. I come from an evangelical family and was practically raised in a church. I always had a strong desire to know God, but I never truly knew Him.
When I was young I saw shadows, which made me feel bad, and I would be very frightened. From the time I was young, I would ask my mother why I hadn’t been born a boy.
At the age of 14, I was baptized at the church we were attending. Everyone thought I was an exemplary child because I was quiet, discreet and really wanted to know God, but I had no direction – there was an immense void inside me.
However, when I allowed myself to be led by new friendships, it wasn’t long before I became a young rebel, drinking and smoking. I began dating a guy that was very jealous, to the point where he physically abused me. This was my breaking point. It was everything I needed for that little seed from the past to flourish: I started going to alternative nightclubs, where I got involved with women and delve further into alcohol and drugs.
My life became crazy; I would do anything I felt like doing, without considering the consequences, without thinking about anyone or anything. I began serial dating, one after another. I slept with many girls and sometimes even boys, who dressed as “drag queens“. I thought I was the bomb, but my life was actually being destroyed. I worked hard, but then I would waste everything at the nightclubs, with women, alcohol and drugs.
I thought that by moving to another city my life would change, so a friend and I moved to Florianopolis (SC), determined on restarting our lives. The city changed, the state changed, but the problems were still the same.
More drugs, more alcohol, more lies, more craziness.
I moved back to Sorocaba, in Sao Paulo, and had the beginning of two overdoses. I was an alcoholic and drank almost every day. I was completely out of control. I stopped using cocaine because I was afraid to die, but I started smoking marijuana to help me fall asleep. This was the only way I didn’t have horrible nightmares. Yet, I was not only dependent on the alcohol and drugs, but I was also dependent on people.
To sum it all up, my downfall came when I got involved with sadomasochism.
I moved in with a girl and my life became a living hell. One day, she told me herself that everything was wrong. At first I was reluctant, I would promise to stop, I would do anything, but I could never stop liking women because I thought that this was how I was born.
I attended several gay parades, defended homosexuality with tooth and nails, I even went to a protest in Brasilia to demand gay rights. But I finally gave in.
It was in this situation, that on a Sunday, at 7 am, in February 2012, I arrived at the Universal Church. Not even I believed in myself. I spoke with the pastor, cried, and he said that from that day on he would fight my fight with me, so I decided to surrender with all my strength to God. It was all I ever wanted: a new chance.
What I thought was impossible, God made possible. I went through a process of deliverance, and the assistants and pastors took care of me until I had my encounter with God.
Besides being very well received and helped, it was during a Youth Group meeting that I saw the opportunity to convey what God had done in my life and help other young people who are lost and do not believe in themselves.
I am happy, I was born again and I am a woman of God because someone believed in me.