long time no see- it’s just the best thing ever to be writing again and being back on this community *nostalgia comes knocking on the door* the past month hasn’t treated me so well in terms of my mental, emotional, and for the first time, physical wellbeing- it’s taken a heavy toll. as always, i’m finding ways to heal and find beauty in the most mundane of things, and i knew writing could help me suture those old wounds back together.
as i’m feeling this jumble of intense emotions, i figured that right now, there’s a group of people who probably feel the same way about a considerable amount of anti-LGBTQ+/trans laws impinging on their rights.
☼ why talk about this at all?
it’s certainly no surprise that transgender people in america as well as globally face a copious amount of discrimination by simply being. why should they be at a disadvantage for simply living out their lives the way they wish to just like every cisgender person out there? the fact that our society ostracizes the primary rights of trans people without a second glance is absolutely appalling– conservatives have created over 200 anti-LGBTQ+ laws, the majority severely affecting the lifestyles of trans individuals. i genuinely don’t understand the stigma that follows them like a shadow. transgender people belong here like everyone else and deserve a life where they aren’t shamed for being themselves!
☼ action against the trans community
the full depth of what this truly means has been manifested in a failed bill passed by south dakota’s government stating that transgender children are undeserving of receiving proper healthcare. this charade would have prohibited south dakota physicians from using puberty blockers as well as gender confirmation surgery for adolescents under 16. everyday feminism published an eye-opening article on misconceptions of gender confirmation surgery (a.k.a. bottom surgery) which i urge you all to check out if you want to learn more- who doesn’t?
altogether, gender confirmation is a means of treatment for gender dysphoria– an unrest one feels between his/her/their assigned sex and gender identity. not granting the right to gender confirmation surgery can negatively influence one’s mental health. a transgender woman named emily kaufman fills us in on how this surgery was essential in completing her transition- it helped her own up to her body, so who’s to say that bottom surgery won’t help so many more individuals in the trans community (for real, there are 1.5 million trans people in america)? 78% of transgender people have already claimed that surgery has helped them move forward. suppose that studies have shown that bottom surgery is often ineffective. isn’t the mere possibility that it can alter someone’s life and save them distress e n o u g h?
criminalizing the use of facilities such as restrooms, the expulsion of transgender peoples’ privileges, and the banning of youth healthcare come to life in anti-trans bills nationwide, just starting with this one. south dakota is one of the nine states this year that have attempted to advance laws not only against healthcare services providing care for trans people, but also punishing them, the backlash extending so far as jail time. personally, i believe that the potential of this is absurd and completely blown out of proportion.
☼ how the healthcare system puts trans people at a disadvantage
the dosage of discrimination against transgender people in this field has peaked when you look at the fact that transgender people a three times less likely to be accepted for a job compared to the national average (par). this comes mainly from the fact that many actively avoid ecumenical healthcare carrying the fear of being misgendered. the principal reason for misapprehension between a transgender individual and healthcare services is respect for the former’s identity the same way they would respect every being. i hate to break it to you healthcare services… but no duh.
kellan baker, a medical student at john hopkins university, indicates that there are umpteen insurance companies who will refuse to cover for gender-related surgeries. however, these companies haven’t given the public a valid reason for saying “no”- it is implied that they simply feel uncomfortable and don’t understand. they may also decline due to a lack of awareness to what transgender people are looking for. which majorly sucks. because of this, the quest to look for a healthcare provider who is willing to hand over their services to the trans community is a plight.
for transgender womxn of color, the possibility of death is not so impossible when so many suffer for HIV, AIDS, and have even attempted suicide (the amount of those seriously considering it has grown) no government can wave this off, because this is the worst it can get. this is it.
☼ how to be an ally
in case laws similar to the ones nearly passed by south dakota get smoked out, it is important as ever to support the transgender community and gain momentum in ensuring their rights are equally protected. each and every one of us have so much power, and using it to help people out as a humanitarian is honestly one of the best things we could do.
what YOU can do to share the love:
- read stories about people’s experiences in LGBTQ+ forums/communities to become more open-minded
- if you want to ask your LGTBQ+ friends/others questions, make sure it’s O.K. with them first
- stereotypes, begone! banish misconceptions about the community from your mind
- respect transgender people’s identities. you don’t have to treat them any different from how you would treat anyone else. call them by the names they prefer.
- educate yourselves!
yes, the government may make moves to pass laws against trans people and yes, the situation is a colossal inequity, but we’ll be ready when that happens.
thanks so much for reading!