Fans have been rooting for Jazz Jennings to be able to live the life she’s been dreaming about for a while. After finally undergoing gender confirmation surgery once she turned 18, the I Am Jazz star is in the body she always felt that she belonged in. And soon after, she started her journey to finding love, too. “I didn’t expect that to happen to me right after surgery,” the teen told her parents on the TLC show. “But, with [my boyfriend],” she continued, “something just feels right.” So who is her boyfriend? His name is Ahmir Steward, and we’ve got everything you need to know. Check it out.
How did Jazz and Ahmir meet?
Their love story started out off-screen, but Jazz summarized it for fans as she filled in her friends and family. After creating a new email to share with her YouTube subscribers, Ahmir reached out. His brother had introduced him to the channel and he decided to introduce himself to Jazz over the Internet. Over time, the two started talking and getting to know each other. “He just seemed like a really good guy,” she told her brother. After noticing that one of his Instagram posts had a West Philly location tag, they decided to meet up while she was in the city.
It was his first email that really hooked her, though. She didn’t share the details of what he had to say, but she did say, “Something compelled me to reply and he just seemed very sincere in the message and it all just blossomed from there.” As far as their IRL meeting goes, Jazz says, “Ahmir and I met in Philly at the Transgender Health Conference. … And since then, we’ve just kind of formed this bond. We are talking and keeping in touch every single day.”
How old is Ahmir?
When Jazz’s dad started grilling her about her new boo, she got into the nitty gritty. At 19 years old, Ahmir is just a little bit older than Jazz. He’s already graduated high school, but he hasn’t started college just yet. Originally, he was going to joining the Air Force, but things didn’t go as planned, and it turns out that wasn’t his dream anyway. Though he’s not currently working, Jazz, who is the valedictorian of her senior, is hoping to motivate him to pursue college after all.
When it comes to his future, he’s got some serious political ambitions, too. When he first met Jazz’s friends, he admitted to them that he wants to be the president of the United States someday. “Back in Philly, my mom is friends with the mayor somehow, so I feel like that would be somebody who could mentor me in some way,” he said. “Saying that you have to be a lawyer or go to school for, like, history or political science or whatever, I feel like you don’t really have to. Because nobody can tell you what’s wrong with the world besides yourself.”
Is Ahmir also transgender?
Nope. The two met at a Transgender Health Conference, but Ahmir is cisgender, meaning his gender identity matches the gender he was assigned at birth. In the past, she had expressed interest in dating a boy who was transgender, but on the show admitted that Ahmir “isn’t the textbook definition” of the kind of guy she thought that she’d be into. “I’d love to meet a cute trans-boy who will be my true love, or possibly my soul mate,” she wrote in a Harper’s Bazaar essay in 2016.
“However, the dating pool is less than limited, because I’m the only ‘out’ transgender girl in my school. I feel that there are others lurking, some may be stealth, while others just aren’t ready to come out. So, I’ve resigned myself to the fact that it will be a while before I experience love. I’m okay. I’m a patient person. I can wait for my prince charming.” Though she seems to have found her Prince Charming, Ahmir is pretty different from the kind of person she thought she’d end up with.
Do Jazz’s parents approve of her relationship with Ahmir?
While they’re a little wary — especially of the fact that the couple met online — they seem cautiously optimistic for their daughter. But even more so, they’re surprised to see her falling for someone so quickly. “Jazz has talked about being in love for so long, and right after her surgery, she’s found a boy,” shared her mom, Jeanette Jennings. “It seemed like it happened overnight, and we’re all kind of, like, shocked. … He’s very sweet, but, like, Jazz is diving right into this. Quickly.”
Jazz’s dad is pretty much on the same page. For George Jennings, it seems most of his concerns are based on the fact that they met online. He seems wary of the fact that Ahmir is older, too, meaning that he’s out of high school. And when it came time for Ahmir to come down and visit them in their home state, he was pretty nervous about how much time the couple was planning to spend together. “Admittedly, I’m not sure where the commonality is and what’s making this click so positively for Jazz,” he said. “But ultimately, we can’t stop him from coming to Florida.”
Do Ahmir’s parents approve of his relationship with Jazz?
Though Ahmir’s dad seems to be on board, and he even let his son spend time with Jazz while Ahmir was visiting him in Florida, the 19-year-old’s mom isn’t feeling as positively about the relationship. “My mom is not actually as accepting as I originally thought she would be,” Ahmir shared in an episode of the show. “She didn’t acknowledge you for who you were,” he told Jazz. “She would say ‘he’ and ‘that’s a man because he was born a man.’”
In fact, Ahmir and his mother’s relationship became so contentious that he may move out of his home in Philly. “The most hurtful thing my mom said was that Jazz was still a man and that I would be gay for being in a relationship with Jazz,” the Pennsylvania native shared. “[I] lost it because I’m not gay. I’m not attracted to men. And Jazz is a female, so it just didn’t make sense to me.” While talking with Jazz, he admitted, “[My mom] might not let me back in the house, to be honest. … That’s just how she is. And I’m very outspoken. So yeah, that could potentially lead to me, I guess, being kicked out of the house or whatever else.”
But Ahmir isn’t letting it get to him too much. “I feel like she’ll still have her views and she’ll still have her opinions,” he said. “We should just enjoy our time together instead of worrying about my family or whatever.”
Have Jazz and Ahmir kissed?
From the sound of things, it seems like they kissed pretty much the first day they met — but, uh, it didn’t go so well. According to Jazz, most kids learned how to kiss in their early teens, but she’s a little behind some of her peers. But they’re getting in a lot of practice to make up for lost time when they see each other, even if it’s a little more complicated than the reality star initially anticipated. As far as getting more physical, though, they’re taking things slow. The star has expressed concern about not enjoying sex because of how “effed up [her] whole vagina is,” but there are other barriers, too.
“Right now, I don’t have those sexual desires and instincts,” the star shared on the show. “But I’m excited to figure it out. … I still want to be able to learn how to kiss and do other things that people do in relationships.” While talking with Ahmir on Facetime, she admitted, “My libido’s like a 0 out of 10.” Luckily, he understands, and told Jazz, “I like the pace we’re going at now.” She does love to tease her man about getting frisky, though. The teen is frequently talking about what sex will be like one day — and even asking Ahmir what he thinks of her cleavage when she catches him sneaking a peak.
What do Jazz’s friends think?
While giving her friends the goss, she wanted to get their impression — but things didn’t go so well at first. “It is important to me that my friends like Ahmir,” the teen admitted. “I really want them to be able to see what I see in him. And I want my friends to be his friend.” But when she told them about how he didn’t think she was a good kisser (yet) and he wanted to hold off on kissing with tongue until they mastered kissing without tongue, her friends thought it was all pretty shady. Considering the fact that Jazz has been putting up with transphobic bullies like Derick Dillard her whole life, they’re worried that smaller slights might fly under the radar.
They were also pretty shocked to hear the news. “I cannot believe that she actually has a boyfriend. Like, I’ve known her for so long. The thought of even talking to a boy, she’s like, ‘No. Why? Why would I do that?’” said her friend Kaci. “And now she has a boyfriend. I’m just like, ‘Girl, what?’” When her friends finally met Ahmir for the first time, they grilled him — hard. Though he shared with them that he wanted to be president, they weren’t exactly impressed, insisting that he come up with a game plan to get there rather than just dreaming about his goal.
“My friends are a little harsh on Ahmir,” Jazz said. “I feel bad. I think they really have high expectations for whoever I’m with, and Ahmir on the outside doesn’t fit the definition of the perfect boyfriend for Jazz, but they don’t really know who he is. And the way he expresses himself to me makes me know that he really is a great person. So I’m not really letting their judgment cloud my perception of him.” Soon enough, Jazz’s friends are sure to come around, too.
To learn more about Jazz and Ahmir’s relationship, tune in to I Am Jazz on TLC on Tuesdays at 9 p.m.
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