don't settle for the language and ideas you were given when they are inadequate

keep searching // create new language.


today is #nationalcomingoutday and yesterday was #worldmentalhealthday. As I thought about what these events meant to me, I had a hard time finding personal connection and value related to my gender. I strongly feel it's time to evolve our language and way of thinking about these issues in the context of gender. First off, questioning, exploring and coming to know your #genderidentity and #genderexpression are not mental health issues. Mental health issues for trans folkx are a symptom of living in a transphobic, sexist, and binary world with HUGE barriers to accessing information and affirming medically necessary health care. The mental health of the #trans community will only improve when the rest of the world realizes it is them who need to change/learn, not us, for things to actually get better. 

secondly, unlike with sexual orientation, a trans person can't come out as trans and have that be the end of it. For many trans and #nonbinary folkx, it is not just a single moment in time, but a continuous lifelong process of disclosures and conversations that allow others to understand who you are and how they need to alter their thinking, perceptions, and (sometimes) name/pronoun in order to support and affirm you. Imposing "coming out" language (that was historically rooted and coined by the lesbian, gay, and bisexual movement) on trans experiences is not always appropriate or accurate. These two experiences are not the same and it is time to recognize that by using different language to more effectively communicate that distinction.

Mere Abrams