8 Jun 2015

Philadelphia Trans Health Conference: My Safe Space


I hope it will be the first of many for me. I attended the conference to conduct a session on my research study: Transmasculine individuals’ experiences of pregnancy, birth and infant feeding (funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research – Institute of Gender and Health). After two years of work, 22 participant interviews (about one hour each) and many, many hours spent transcribing, analyzing, coding and re-coding, Dr. Joy Noel-Weiss and I presented our findings!

We had a well-attended session and received many good questions from attendees. I had my nursing 7-month-old baby with me. She played on a blanket on the floor with some toys and snacks. An amazingly generous woman I’d never met before got down on the floor with my baby and entertained her, without getting too close or picking her up (she would have screamed!). She made it possible for me to speak! Once in a while when the baby got fussy I picked her up and nursed her, handing the microphone over to Joy to continue presenting. It all worked out beautifully.

Philly Trans Health refreshed my soul. Last year there were about 3500 attendees, and friends told me that this year seemed to be an even bigger gathering (we have to wait for the final tally). It is hard to describe what it feels like to have spent my life up until now as the only trans* person amongst cisgender people at all times, and then to be suddenly surrounded by THOUSANDS of trans* and gender non-conforming people. I felt so damn SAFE. I nursed the baby in the hallways, and didn’t avoid eye contact; I smiled at people who walked by, knowing that they would return the friendly gesture.

On the first day of the conference we went to City Hall where the transgender pride flag was raised for the first time. Children, and people with children were invited to participate in the ceremony, so my baby and I both held the flag and then a group of kids pulled the rope to lift it while the audience cheered.





There were so many trans* and non-binary people in town for the conference that I could see others like me everywhere I went – Reading Terminal Market, on the SEPTA train while commuting to my friends’ place in the suburbs, and around the historic district, too. I nursed my baby in all of those spaces, and felt safe everywhere.

It is only in experiencing this weekend of mass transness that I am realizing how I have been affected by being the only. This past winter was rough for my family to a point where I began to feel stressed and fragile. My partner needed gallbladder surgery when our baby was only two months old, and shortly after that, the baby developed bronchiolitis. With all of the anxiety surrounding their illnesses, I had trouble coping with parenting while trans in public. I became reluctant to go out on my own with my two kids. This went on for months. When it was time to travel to Toronto and Ottawa to speak at a regional conference, I desperately wanted to cancel. How could I cope with all that? I had lost my usual resilience.

We went, and I did it. Getting out there and just making it all happen helped me start to feel better, but arriving in Philadelphia let me be whole again. In Philly, I stayed with a trans* friend I knew only from the interwebs, and his partner and son. In their household, not only was my trans* identity utterly normal, but we also shared an attachment-minded style of parenting that includes nursing our kids beyond toddlerhood. My friends helped entertain my baby in the most understanding and patient of ways so that I could clean bottles and thaw milk, and pack. When I wanted to attempt a shower, this friend said, “Oh, let me start the shower for you so you don’t have to spend time figuring out how it works. Otherwise the baby would be crying by the time you get in.” Yes, yes, yes.

I felt completely accepted and valued, and I think I have brought at least some of this sense of well-being back home with me. I am so grateful and privileged to have been able to enjoy this nourishing experience. I know that many others cannot.

I also acknowledge that some had a very hard time with the conference. I found flyers left out on the vendors’ tables explaining that trans women seem to be getting significantly less programming that is specific to them. I’d like to know why that is happening, and what the organizers plan to do about it for next year. 

31 comments:

  1. You have provided the useful and helpful information. I like the way you written the post on healthy related issues. You have raised such great points to think about. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  2. You are fighting for an important matter! All people deserve attention and comfortable life. if there is an opportunity, I will be happy to support your initiative!

    ReplyDelete
  3. It is important to know what elements are needed to write a successful application essay. One of the most important things that applicants need to remember is to plan the essay carefully. Making an outline of important items to include is very important to the success of the essay. It is important to adhere to the length of the essay so that the board does not throw it out. If the application says 500 to 1000 words, it means just that and nothing more or less. The applicant should include information about accomplishments in the applicant’s life and the hopeful accomplishments for the future. Check for those who need academic assistance.

    ReplyDelete
  4. You've probably heard about essay writing services that will give their best in order to meet your requirements about the essay or another kind of academic paper. Well, here we have StudyBay.com – a platform that differs from essay writing services. In this post, I want to share my StudyBay review. If you want to find info about “review of studybay”, welcome to Scamfighter.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Your blog is very informative.I learn a lot from your posts or articles.Its quite different from others.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hence, having the greatest sleep aid is actually directly relative to the wellbeing of the bone and joint system HOW TO SLEEP BETTER? IS IT TIME TO UPGRADE YOUR OLD MATTRESS?

    ReplyDelete
  7. You have given the valuable and accommodating data. I like the manner in which Online Dissertation Writingthe post on solid related issues. You have raised such extraordinary focuses to consider. A debt of gratitude is in order for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Take some business cards from your area of expertise (they as a rule have them) or make a few. And in addition the discussions, go to every one of the morning meals, snacks and suppers you can, and visit with individuals. https://www.essaytigers.co.uk/

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hello!! My lovely Friends, My name is Eillen Sharma. I provide Newly Teenager Hot and Sexy girls for full Night party and romance and I also provide to you HouseWife, Modal Star Girls, College Girls any where only on one click on my link and find out the Lovely Hotness Call Girls on the doorstep deliver without any risk. ||gurgaon escorts|| ||escorts in gurgaon|| ||Kolkata escorts|| ||Escorts in Kolkata|| ||call girls in gurgaon|| ||escort services in gurgaon|| ||Kolkata call girls|| ||Escort Service in Kolkata|| If you are interested for romance with hot girl you can contact me any where. Thanks for visited I love you too who loves me.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hi!! My dazzling Friends,My name is Eillen Sharma.I Provide Hot call young ladies for sentiment and appreciate over entire night with step home convey for each area. I likewise give Sexy Modal stars and Housewife like your better half to sentiment on the bed of entire night with no hazard folks. On the off chance that you are fascinating for romance with hot young lady you can contact me anyplace.

    ||gurgaon call girls||
    ||Russian escorts in gurgaon||
    ||housewife escorts in gurgaon||
    ||college call girls in gurgaon||

    ||Kolkata escort girls||
    ||call girls in Kolkata||
    ||housewife escorts in Kolkata||
    ||russian escorts in Kolkata||

    Thanku for visited I adore you too who cherishes me.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hi guys! If you are alone and want female companionship, then please follow me on the links given below. I like to have sexual relationship daily with different persons. If you are interested in me. Go to the site and book your appointment to have intercourse with me on bed at night with full erotic entertainment.

    Click here ||Model escorts in Kolkata ||
    Click here ||Collage Escorts in Kolkata ||
    Click here ||Ecorts in Mumbai||

    Click here ||Escorts girls in Kolkata||
    Click here ||Escorts in Salt Lake||
    Click here ||Model Escorts in Mumbai||

    Click here ||West bengal call girls||
    Click here ||New town Escorts||
    Click here ||Andheri Escorts||

    ReplyDelete
  12. Call or whatsapp 8081111169 for escort services in Gurgaon. We provide No.1 call girl services for both incall or outcall facility to clients. You can book sexy escorts in Gurgaon or beautiful call girls in Gurgaon at affordable escort fees. To hire Gurgaon call girls or Gurgaon escorts simply click on the following link:-
    Thank you My Dear

    Click here |Gurgaon Escorts|
    Click here |Gurgaon Call Girls|
    Click here |Gurgaon Actress Escorts|
    Click here |College Girls Escorts|
    Click here |Housewife Escorts|

    ReplyDelete
  13. Finally, when you are done with your dissertation writing services, make sure you have sent it to the respective source or saved it in your drive. It’s always better to follow these assignment help tips rather than moving around with guilt of unfinished work hanging over you. We know that every student faces this situation during their academic life and when you have lots and lots to do, a proper way to manage your dissertation help Services you spend less time getting more adept.

    ReplyDelete
  14. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I am really happy to say it’s an interesting post to read. I learn new information from your article, you are doing a great job. Keep it up
    assignment expert

    ReplyDelete
  16. GotoAssignmentHelp.com is leading plagiarism free assignment writing help in Australia. We provide customized assignment help service. We are leading the market for more than a decade now and have acquired the name of being the best academic help service for our comprehensive services at pocket-friendly rates.
    help with conflict management assignment
    write myproject management assignment
    supply chain management assignment help online
    online project management assignment help
    help with strategy management assignment
    porter's five forces assignment help online
    online help with history assignment
    help with sociology assignment online
    MYOB assignment helpers

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thank you so much for providing the important information. If ever you feel any problem in writing something you can visit Programming Homework Help

    ReplyDelete
  18. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Programming assignment
    Whenever I think about my programming assignments, I black out for a moment. The lengthy codes and frameworks make me nauseous every time. Thanks to programming Assignment Help, I do not regret my decision of choosing this subject for graduation. The writers are so good at programming that I get ‘A’ score whenever I choose them to write my programming assignment on my behalf.

    ReplyDelete

  20. Brother Printer
    team will help you with all your technical difficulties in using brother printer and will resolve all your doubts regarding the setup and installation process. calling the tech support team will save your time and money. so call us now on Brother Printer Help Phone Number
    +1-888-902-8333 to help you with your difficulties.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Thanks, great post. I really like your point of view. I m Marry Taylor, I working as a support executive for printer devices. I am offering support for HP Devices and If you need help then contact Hp customer Support +1-888-902-8333 and you can also chat us to get assistance to fix issues regarding HP printer.

    ReplyDelete
  22. you can buy assignment from our website. Then we provide the best specialist assignment writing service and which help you complete assignment in required time. because our expert has analytics knowledge in essay writing. just send an email info@uaeassignmenthelp.com

    ReplyDelete
  23. Cannot you finish your academic writing work? So now you have the chance that you can end all your worries by getting top-level report writing help support services from the Ireland professionals and increase your academic grade at a high-level speed.

    ReplyDelete

  24. Wonderful goods from you, man. I have understand your stuff previous to and you’re just extremely fantastic. I actually like what you’ve acquired here, certainly like what you are stating and the way in which you say it. You make it entertaining and you still take care of to keep it wise. I can’t wait to read much more from you. This is actually a great site.

    A professionally written Summary Statement is perfect, to sum up, what defines you as an engineering professional. Summary Statement writing by professional engineers having ample experience in the same is something that makes CDRReport stand out. We have domain experts to guide us through every report and it is this rich experience that helps us highlight the skills and key knowledge areas that distinguish you. We summarise your episodes in the best way!

    continuing professional development engineers australia
    engineers australia chartered
    ner australia

    ReplyDelete
  25. Hello there, just became alert to your blog through Google, and found that it is really informative. I’m gonna watch out for brussels. I will appreciate if you continue this in future. A lot of people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

    Best Summary Statement Writing Service from Professional Writers at WriteCDR
    Are you seeking to work in the limit of Professional Engineer and are bothered by the confounded visa issues. Try not to be! At WriteCDR, we offer you conference and help with Professional Engineer Summary Statement. Not restricted to this, we offer help for complete CDR composing, CDR audit, and that's just the beginning. Your cdr summary statement enables assessor to comprehend what goes in the Career Episodes, quickly. So we expertly exhibit the fundamental abilities wanted for a Professional Engineer via cautiously connecting fitting ventures and activities you have embraced as of recently. We comprehend your occupation with normal employments and family necessities and furthermore comprehend the hugeness of an endorsed CDR. Along these lines, don't squander any additional time and connect with us today for a beyond any doubt shot endeavor towards a positive CDR evaluation. cdr report for engineers australia

    ReplyDelete
  26. This post is not just informative but impressive also. The post is so convincing that it created an urge to choose Dissertation Writing Help & Dissertation Writing Services. You can email us at info@ukdissertationhelp.co.uk or Phone Number: 020 8144 9988.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Report writing is a difficult task for students and they do not write easily. Don’t worry, we provide writers for report wring help services. Our writers easily write the report. We provide free revision service. Hire Now!

    ReplyDelete
  28. Buy coursework new Zealand service from students assignment help for the students. They face so many problems in writing an coursework because they have a very hard syllabus and it's not easy to write for them so that they need expert's help.

    ReplyDelete
  29. There are thousands of essay writing assignment services companies and most of the companies providing impressive offers. Then how to find the most original writing service? Our expert tries to best assignment services provide you in the UAE.

    ReplyDelete
  30. PTHC offers a space for Trans* individuals and partners, families, and suppliers to meet up to re-imagine what wellbeing implies for Trans* individuals, as indicated by the Mazzoni Center. The meeting centers around advancing transgender wellbeing and health as a primary concern, body, soul, and network. PTHC gives a one of a kind encounter to network individuals assignment writing uk - AssignmentSpot to tune in, gain from and work with transgender activists. It is work that is profoundly vital on the off chance that we are to keep fabricating a really comprehensive development.

    ReplyDelete