A 41-year-old woman, Taylor Lianne Chandler, recently claimed that she is the girlfriend of American Olympic swim star Michael Phelps. She said they met on dating app Tinder. She also revealed in a public Facebook post on Nov 14 that she was born intersex. She said she was born with a penis but without testicles, and a uterus, but without ovaries. She decided to become a female using testosterone blockers and estrogen enhancers, and a "corrective surgery". She was born David Roy Fitch.
Here are five things to know about Michael Phelps' self-proclaimed girlfriend.
1. She does not have any photo with Phelps. Phelps, who is believed to be in rehab after being arrested for drink driving, has neither publicly admitted nor denied the relationship. He has not been active on Twitter since Oct 5.
2. She is listed as a public figure on a Facebook account created on Oct 22. Her description on it is: Taylor Lianne Chandler's life changed on September 30 when her relationship with Michael Phelps, was made public. In it, she lists her "publicist" as Lainie Speiser.
Speiser is an adult entertainment publicist. According to Speiser's own Twitter account, she has written six books, her latest, The Manhattan Madam's Guide to Great Sex. Speiser's Twitter account contains pictures of topless women. She also calls on her followers to vote for the best porn star. She is probably doing a great job as a publicist because Chandler is now known internationally.
3. The Internet started hating Chandler after she claimed on Nov 14 that she had sex with Phelps without telling him that she was born intersex, or has gone for a "corrective surgery". Her Facebook account is rife with haters. People are calling her "fraud" and "liar", and accusing her of seeking attention. One commenter also pointed out that in a photo collage of individual photos of her and Phelps, she included one of actor Ashton Kutcher.
4. Chandler is apparently a sign language interpreter. According to the website of her "company" TLC, Chandler once dreamed of running her own online consignment shop. That dream came true in 2004 with Chandler's Designer Consignment. She went on to make a name for herself in design, public relations and destination management. The online shop is in fact on eBay. She is also, according to the site, "pursuing a more public life as interpreting does not lend itself to being in the public eye". She claims she has a degree in social and behavioural sciences, but does not say from where.
5. Chandler is afraid things with Phelps will end, and it will "hurt like hell". She wrote in a post on Facebook on Nov 14: "I am probably going to lose him because he is a brand that his (marketing) team wants to protect." According to the same post, she has dated many celebrities before, but Phelps is the only one she felt intimacy with.