avenpt

Huffington Post publishes a video segment on aromantic, demiromantic and queerplatonic relationships

avenpt:

Huffpost Gay Voices has published a video piece detailing three peoples’ experiences with aromanticism, demiromanticism and queerplatonic relationships, including difficulties, definitions and common misconceptions.

An excellent, respectful discussion about minorities that often don’t get much visibility. 

To see the video, please click here

gaywrites

gaywrites:

New York City officials could soon make it much easier for trans people to change the gender markers on their birth certificates. 

A proposed bill would lift many of the requirements that must be met before altering a birth certificate. Rather than proving you’ve had surgery or other clinical treatment, a trans person only has to provide confirmation from a health care provider stating that “a document change more accurately reflects the applicant’s sex based on contemporary expert standards regarding gender identity.” And the range of health care providers who can make that call has expanded; in addition to doctors and psychotherapists, physicians’ assistants, nurse practitioners and midwives can also make the assessment. 

The new policy would also do away with a previous requirement to have changed one’s name. 

"When people’s gender isn’t portrayed accurately, it causes problems. They get turned down from jobs … They may be accused of fraud, turned away, harassed, attacked,” said the LGBT Community Center’s Carrie Davis, describing the importance of the change. “In the best cases, they face embarrassment, confusion, and delays.”

New York City is one of several dozen jurisdictions in the country that have control of their own birth records, which means the state’s regulations on changing sex markers do not apply. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie vetoed a similar proposal to remove surgical requirements in January.

Hugely important step. I really hope this becomes law soon! 

I would also like to point out the specific language used - more accurately reflects the applicant’s sex” - leaving wiggle room for people whose gender is not exactly male or female, yet a change would be more accurate.

knowhomo
knowhomo:

LGBTQ* People You Should Know
Albert Cashier :: (December 25, 1843 – October 10, 1915)
-Transgender Civil War Soldier
-Born Jennie Irene Hodgers, in Ireland
-Served for three years in the 95th Illinois Infantry of the Union army 
-Fought in the battles of Nashville, Mobile, and Vicksburg
-Following war, received Veteran’s pension
- Worked in Illinios for forty-plus years following the war as a cemetery worker and deckhand
- After breaking his leg, a nurse questioned Chashier’s gender expression. After (many) a plea from Cashier, the nurse kept the information private
- In 1911, Cashier moved in to Soldier and Sailors Home (an assisted living for former members of the Civil War/U.S. defense)
- Cashier lived there until his mind started to deteriorate (possibly from dementia)
- Following Cashier’s health decline, nurses started to assist Cashier. During this time, reports were filed and Cashier was forced to dress in women’s dresses. 
- Cashier’s tomb read Albert Cashier until 1970 when a second tomb stone was erected with both Cashier’s born name and identified name
 

knowhomo:

LGBTQ* People You Should Know

Albert Cashier :: (December 25, 1843October 10, 1915)

-Transgender Civil War Soldier

-Born Jennie Irene Hodgers, in Ireland

-Served for three years in the 95th Illinois Infantry of the Union army

-Fought in the battles of Nashville, Mobile, and Vicksburg

-Following war, received Veteran’s pension

- Worked in Illinios for forty-plus years following the war as a cemetery worker and deckhand

- After breaking his leg, a nurse questioned Chashier’s gender expression. After (many) a plea from Cashier, the nurse kept the information private

- In 1911, Cashier moved in to Soldier and Sailors Home (an assisted living for former members of the Civil War/U.S. defense)

- Cashier lived there until his mind started to deteriorate (possibly from dementia)

- Following Cashier’s health decline, nurses started to assist Cashier. During this time, reports were filed and Cashier was forced to dress in women’s dresses. 

- Cashier’s tomb read Albert Cashier until 1970 when a second tomb stone was erected with both Cashier’s born name and identified name

 Albert Cashier

gaywrites

gaywrites:

Last week, voters in Peru elected Luisa Revilla Urcia to the local council in La Esperanza, Trujillo. In doing so, they made history — she’s the first out trans person in the country to be elected to public office. 

Peru has formally signed onto UN resolutions condemning anti-LGBT violence, but Peruvian law doesn’t ban anti-LGBT discrimination or recognize anti-LGBT hate crimes. A bill to legalize same-sex civil unions was introduced a year ago, but has yet to pass.

“I will execute my office with great humility and tenacity,” Revilla told the Washington Blade on Thursday.

Revilla, 43, told Correo, a Peruvian newspaper, her platform includes the construction of a home for people living with HIV/AIDS.

“I am going to promote equality and I will say no to discrimination,” she said. “We want everyone to have equal access, to succeed and to achieve their goals. When there is no discrimination, there is pacification. Infrastructure and modernity is important, but promoting values and showing concern for the people matters even more.”

Yes yes YES. This would be incredible news anywhere, but especially exciting in countries where LGBT people still struggle to have their basic rights recognized. Rock on.

knowhomo

Teach Us About Someone! Who Should We Research This Fall?

knowhomo:

What LGBTQ* Heroes do you want more people to know about?

Who is your LGBTQ* crush?

What event would you like to know more about?

You can also (private message) if you’d rather not link your tumblr to the account.

Thank you for your help. - Rebecca

Any suggestions? How about researching a historical non-binary person…

How do you combat not trans enough self-doubt?

For non-binary people, these allowances might seem like demands because they are sometimes unusual, unheard of, uncommon. Yet changing pronouns, whether it’s from “he” to “she,” or from “she” to “they,” is equally unusual, unheard of, and uncommon for your average bystander. It sounds awfully wrong to advise a transwoman to let others call her “he” because it would be too much of a hassle – despite how wrong it feels for her, despite the pain it causes her to hear this every day, despite how disconnected this is from her inner reality. It seems equally wrong for me to advise someone for whom it sounds wrong, for whom it is painful to hear “he” and/or “she” used for them, that they have no right to ask for a different pronoun.

[…]

It’s all about what makes my life more comfortable, thought perhaps not (yet) most comfortable. One step in the right direction is better than no step at all.

Read more

thetrevorproject

thetrevorproject:

glaad:

Take a stand against bullying! Go over to Facebook and share one of these graphics to show that you’ve got the backs of LGBT youth for #spiritday and every day! 

We’re going purple tomorrow! Share one of these graphics to show your support, too!

everyoneisgay

everyoneisgay:

"I’m genderqueer and have been wanting to take testosterone, but something’s been holding me back. I recently realized men make me uncomfortable and there aren’t many I like so my brain says men=bad. If I take T I will be masculine looking and people will probably think I’m a guy, so brain says me looking like a man= me being what i don’t like. I know I want that for my body, but my mind is suffering. I don’t know if that makes sense."

 - Question submitted by Anonymous and answered by Liam Lowery as a part of Everyone Is Gay: Second Opinions

Liam says:

To me, your question makes loads of sense. It’s a really important question, and I’m really glad you asked.

I’ll start out by telling you where I am at today: I am on testosterone, I have had gender affirming surgery, I prefer he/him pronouns, and I wear what are widely considered traditional men’s clothes. But I am not a man. What I choose to do with my body does not make me anything at all—that is solely the province of my heart and my mind.

It took years to get here, but let me try to simplify the processes that got me here as much as I can. 

Before starting testosterone, I thought hormones were a thing that definitively made you a man or a woman. And why shouldn’t I have? All the men I knew had physical similarities to other men, and the same was true of women, and I didn’t know any trans people. More than that, after an 8th grade sex ed class focused on how the hormones men and women have determine everything from emotional intelligence to sexual desire, I was pretty sure hormones were the secret ingredient that made gender what it was.

Imagine my conflict when I longed for those “manly” physical qualities, which were attached to people whose socialization and way of being repulsed me. I felt icky, to say the least.

I thought that simply the act of starting hormone therapy would make me into something I didn’t want to be, a man (cue vomit noise—in case you couldn’t tell, I also have issues with dudes, you are not alone) and felt so trapped because I wanted the physical effects badly, but didn’t want to lose myself or be seen as a man. There was one night in particular where I laid on the floor of a powder room in my parent’s basement and cried out into the void, “Why does arm hair have to be a man thing?”

What I really meant was, “What the hell does it mean about me that I want arm hair?”

Short answer, I would come to find out, is it doesn’t mean anything. It just is. So I decided to start testosterone. I signed all the waivers at the doctor’s office about the permanent effects with informed abandon, thinking This has got to be better than how I feel now.

Holding the amber vial in my hand for the first time felt very much like holding a pipe bomb. That’s because, at best, you can only be about 82% sure you want to start hormones because you can’t calculate the effects they will have on you or not, since they effect everyone differently. But after reading the list of side-effects, you can be 100% sure that you want to try, that it will make you better off. So as I plunged the needle into my leg, I thought to myself I’ll figure out the rest of this stuff later, I guess.

It turns out what I thought was the end of my figuring out that divine question, (“Who am I?”) was only the beginning. That was three years ago and I can still ponder for hours.

I will tell you what helped me decide to start testosterone:

Imagine you are on an island. And on the island there is an unlimited supply of testosterone and needles and alcohol swabs, and no one there to lay any judgment on what it would mean for you to start T, no men there to say ”You’re like me now!” and no women to say “You are less like me now,” and no other members of the trans community to analyze your choices. There is only you. There is also food and clean water of course, so whatever decision you make you will have to live with for a while. What would you do then?

This may sound like a silly hypothetical, but the truth is no one has to live in your body but you, so in a way you really are on an island. And when you lay down your head on the pillow, you will be the only one who feels your body breathing, you will be the one who has to live in this shell, this envelope, this body for the rest of your life.  The question is less about what it will mean if you modify your body with hormones, and more about how you want your body to look and feel. 

I can testify that T doesn’t make you into anything. It does, typically, make you hornier and hairier and deeper-voiced. It might make you slightly more muscular; it might make it harder for you to cry. It might also make you crave buffalo chicken when you never even liked buffalo chicken before! But no one determines whether you a man or a woman or a beautiful snowflake living in between except you. For better of for worse, you alone are the one who knows who you are. And no, I am not doing a Yoda impression.

That being said, I realize you don’t exist in a vacuum, and some things that happen after you start T and start passing or pass more can’t be changed. Now, women on the street at night walk a little faster when they see me walking behind them, men make comments about women’s bodies in my company, and I throw up in my mouth. But perhaps most painful of all is when other trans folks question my choices about hormones and surgeries, call me an assimilationist because I dress and appear a certain way. 

I can tell you that these experiences feel gross, and that they make me want to change how people see me. So I come out to people as often as I can—a general rule for me is that I want to be out to anyone I will see more than once. Part of this is to help increase trans visibility, but an equally large part is that I want to correct the errant assumption that to look masculine = to be male. We all deserve better than that. 

No decision around starting or not starting hormones is wrong, and it’s important to think about why and how you are making that choice. Additionally, you can decide something today, and change your mind later—many trans folks postpone hormone therapy or stop it at some point, and the world never stops turning. So take your time and let your mind explore what you’d hope to get out of hormones, and what you’d be afraid to lose.

Hormones could never change you inside, my friend. They could never turn you into a man, regardless of what people may see. The flawed assumptions people make based on your appearance about your experiences just go to illustrate how little room there is for trans people in the minds of cis people, and how many trans people pass judgment on one another’s choices. For every one person who may applaud you, there will be one hundred who think you are shirking your identity or trying to gain male privilege. So you can only be accountable to yourself in this decision, and take care of your own needs.

Inside you, there are oceans of contemplation that no one but you will sail. You are on a journey. Don’t let the way others see you or the way you may see others slow you down, just do what you must to get to a safe port. You can always sort out the problematic nature of conflating some physical qualities with gender identity later.

 ***

Click through to read more about Liam and our other Second Opinions panelists!

A beautiful photo project of queer youth.

Almost all of Sharkey’s subjects are younger than 18, which means their parents have to give written permission for them to participate in the project. Occasionally, Sharkey meets the parents personally. Sometimes, they contact Sharkey directly to recommend their child for the project. “I’ve gotten emails and phone calls from parents who say, ‘I have a queer son or daughter that I think would be great for this project.’ Ninety percent of the time the parents are very supportive,” he said.