Monday, November 21, 2016

Trans Day of Remembrance

Yesterday was the 2016 Transgender Day of Remembrance - a day set aside to remember the many trans people who have been needlessly lost to murder, suicide, and health issues related to a lack of proper medical care. Wikipedia reports 24 deaths of trans people in 2016 that were confirmed to be because of unlawful physical violence. Also known as murder. The list is alarming. Black trans woman. Black trans woman. Black trans woman. Latina trans woman. Black trans woman. And so on.

This year's TDoR is especially tragic due to the recent election of Donald Trump and his virulently hateful Vice President Elect. More than a few suicide notes were found from trans people, including kids, shortly after Election Day. Suicide hotlines, particularly those that cater specifically to trans people, were overloaded. Those who are continuing to survive are facing some terrible choices.

The Trans People Who Are Detransitioning To Stay Safe In Trump’s America

Younger trans people feel the same. Tolvo, a genderfluid (“I’m a woman most of the time”) 24-year-old who’s been socially transitioning since she was 23, says that the day after the election was a harrowing and dangerous time. “The results of the election devastated me. I fell into a deep depression and had heavily suicidal urges. I did harm to myself by sitting out in the cold just trying to clear my mind for an hour in only PJs until my dad found me and brought me inside. I also got in a huge fight with my mother where she outed me to my father. It was one of the worst 24-hour periods of my life.” At that point, Tolvo says, “detransitioning was already in my mind. I was afraid of being beaten or killed. At the same time I couldn’t bear going back to living as a man, how it felt like just thinking about it was poison to my body.”

For trans people, they have to choose between possibly facing grisly murder on the streets or by the state and going back to a state of being that can cause severe dysphoria, depression, and suicidal urges. Either route could easily end in death. Nobody should ever have to make that kind of choice. These people do simply because many (thought not most) voters in the U.S. decided that not all its residents should be safe here.

Don't forget about trans people in the coming fight. Us cis people need to keep remembering them today and every day going forward. This is life and death.

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