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How to Support the Transgender Community

Hands in Heart Shape

Transgender women and men face discrimination and bias in all areas of their lives – in education, legal systems, health care, housing, employment, and in their own families. And when a transgendered person also identifies themselves as a person with a disability, belonging to a racial or ethnic minority, in a lower economic status, or as elderly – there can be even more challenges. A trans person may not know exactly why they are being discriminated against – because of trans misconceptions or something else.

Discrimination can come in all forms and cover a broad spectrum, all the way from a nasty glance to physical violence. And if this discrimination carries on into the legal system, there is little hope for change and justice.

Time to back this up a little. Our readership at I HEART TS respect trans people, especially trans women, so you may be wondering why I’m on this mini-rant. I am because I think it’s not always enough to admire from afar (which I know many of you do); sometimes you need to step up to the plate and support the groups you love. And this doesn’t always mean that you have to reveal your love of t-women.

How to Support the Trans Women you Love

  • Educate yourself about transgender issues by reading books, trans news articles, websites, and blogs. Join online forums and engage in discussions with trans people.  
  • Use pronouns and names that are appropriate to a person’s gender presentation; if you’re not sure, ask. Honesty about your confusion will be appreciated.
  • Don’t assume a trans person’s sexual orientation by appearance or rumours. Gender identity and sexual preference can be two different things.
  • Ask questions without being pushy with the transgenders in your life; listen attentively.
  • Understand that trans women are individuals in how they identify themselves even though they may be part of a larger group.
  • If you’re already involved with, or a close friend of a trans person , you may need your own support. Joining a group can be a great way to broaden your trans community as well of your understanding of trans issues.
  • Advocate and get involved by joining action committees and learning more about laws and rights of trans people.

How do you support the trans women you love?

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Tell us what you think! 2 Comments

  1. Marian

    July 13, 2013 at 11:10 am

    Nice article. It is so important to feel the support of the people one cares about. Thank you for point out how to demonstrate love in aspects one ussually does not take care enough.

    • Lola Page

      Lola

      July 15, 2013 at 3:44 pm

      Thanks for the positive feedback Marian. Glad you enjoyed it 🙂

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