This week has been Trans awareness week, leading up to Transgender Day of Remembrance. Today we held the remembrance service in Brighton which was the 10th of it’s kind in the area. It was a privilege to be able to be a part of it.
The service went well, it was very emotional and very well attended. Thank you to everyone who spoke, it was truly a wonderful feeling to be part of such a community. To read more about TDoR please read this post here.
I will add more to this post tomorrow when I feel up to it, but for now please read over my list of the ten thing’s I am thankful for this week, themed around remembrance (explanations will be added soon).
1. Being alive
As you will see in my other post about TDoR, there were 271 names of people killed for being (or being believed to be) trans reported this year alone. This doesn’t include those who have taken their own lives. It doesn’t include those reported as gay hate crimes. It doesn’t include those killed in countries where there is no body collating the numbers.
I am incredibly privileged to be alive.
2. Being out
I live in a place where I am able to be out. I am able to live my life truthfully to myself where other people don’t have that privilege. I am incredibly lucky.
3. Being employed
I have a stable income. That’s a privilege for anyone, but particularly those who are trans. It is too common for trans people to struggle to find work, leading to struggles with home life, debts, shelter, food. I am so lucky and thankful to have a job.
4. Having family
Too often trans people are pushed away by family. I may have had my struggle’s explaining my situation to my family and they may not fully understand it still, but they are still there for me. That includes blood, in-laws and extended family.
5. Being white
This is a privilege regardless. Whether someone makes a conscious effort to use it or not, my skin colour grants me privilege. I am incredibly lucky to have been born white, looking at the list of reported trans people killed a huge majority of those are people of colour.
6. Being educated
I wouldn’t be able to have got as far in life if I hadn’t been educated. I am incredibly privileged here and thankful for it.
7. Being Western
Again this is not something I have chosen, indeed with the majority of these things. But it is something I must acknowledge my privilege in.
8. Having a partner
I have a supportive and loving partner in Tyler and he is there for me so much. I wouldn’t have done half of the stuff I have in the last few years if it wasn’t for him.
9. Being able to go outside with minimal worry
My country is very low on the list with number of trans people killed or attacked each year. Because of my privileges I am able to step out of the door each morning with minimal worry about being hurled abuse, or worse.
10. Being able to pass as a cis male
Finally I am incredibly thankful for being able to pass as a cis gender male. I do not identify as such, but being perceived in this way does give me a lot of privilege. I am seen in social spaces a lot more and my opinion is listened to more. I don’t like this fact, a lot of the time other people know a lot more than me and are ignored, however I feel able to use this privilege to shout louder for other people and I am incredibly thankful for that.
Today I was at the TDoR service at Dorset Garden’s Methodist Church and I was privileged to take part as a member of the committee and to sign the event with a qualified sign language interpreter Fran (the wonderful woman I signed at Trans Pride with). As part of the service we put names up on the wall which were later moved to a different room where they will remain for a while for people to view and respect. I have included photos below by the wonderful Stella Michaels.