No one deserves to be forced to live in a gender that they are unhappy with and that is why My Genderation is declaring this week, the 5th - 12th of November, Trans Youth Week. This week will be dedicated to all the trans youth out there and their families. Follow us on facebook, youtube, snapchat for videos, updates and more!
The first film that we released as a part of this week is from the series My Trans Story, which was produced by All About Trans and part of 25 short films featuring trans people all over the UK:
In the last few years, trans people and activists have achieved tremendous amounts of awareness and made incredible process in a short amount of time. As we progress, our community expands in all it's diversity and complexity with a range of identities and intersectionality. With more discussion and a more open society, trans people are getting the opportunity to step forward and live out their true and authentic lives earlier and earlier.
Unlike when many of us were growing up, trans people are now able to come out much younger and start living their lives in accordance with their own identity. This is partly because now we have the language and the agency to explain how we feel and how we experience our inner selves. Plus, we have Youtube and FB groups. This awareness at a younger age poses a whole new playing field with different challenges and situations for trans kids and their families. Trans kids require specific attention, support and ways of navigating their way through this world.
As trans youth come out in their droves, society has begun a discussion regarding when a person is really able to know what gender they truly are. This doesn't only raise a question about our own identities, but it also raises questions about our society and how it is structured around cis people's experiences and identity, and how anything that varies from this norm is questioned, stigmatised and doubted.
As many trans people have said, this experience and feeling of not belonging started quite early meanwhile others experienced this later in life. No matter how long it takes us to get there, it is a fundamental sense of self and something no one can ever take away from you or tell you is not right. We all have a sense of identity and who we are, and it is one of the first things to start to develop as we grow up. No one ever questions if a girl who was assigned girl at birth is really a girl, because that's the way our society is structured.
When a trans person, especially a young trans person, speaks out about this, they challenge a fundamental norm in our society and as a result they are stigmatised and silenced, and the ones supporting them often suffer the consequences as well. A recent example of this is when a young trans girl was removed from her supportive mother and forced to live her life as a boy. If you want to support them, please sign this petition here.
This is why events such as the National Trans Youth Network is a valuable organisation, and they are in fact hosting their annual conference next weekend, the 11th-13th of November. If you want to support their efforts, please donate here.
What trans kids and trans youth need more than anything is acknowledgement, support and respect. You deserve to be heard and you deserve the chance to live out your true and authentic lives.
Fox & Owl,
Owl's Huffington Post blog profile can be found here.