I have identified with the letter, “B,” of the LGBT community for many years, before I even knew there was such an identity.
I’ve attended support groups and found at many of those meetings the presence of many transgender men and women. Maybe because, like the Transgender community, bisexuals are marginalized and suffer with invisibility, and sometimes, even within the LGBT community itself, by the more recently acceptable sexual identity, more visibly supported Gay and Lesbian communities, there is prejudice, or at best, judgment surrounding their identity.
The Ted Talk below by Geena Rocero, born as a boy in Philippines later growing to win beauty pageants, who became a successful model, and also, an advocate of the transgender community is spot on with the call for support from the community at large for the entire LBGT community.
Geena told her mom when asked, while still seen as a boy (because of her designation as such because of her genitalia,) why she was wearing a t-shirt on her head, “This t-shirt is my hair. This is my hair.”
She knew as a young child she was a girl and now is so grateful that she is a woman.
She moved to San Francisco in 2001, when her green card came through, so that she could change her name and gender. She speaks of the time when she received her license with her name change on it, when the gender marker read as, “F,” and how powerful that was for her to experience.
She received her license to live, purely dignified, with fears minimized, as a woman, while having keen awareness of the many in the transgender community that are not so fortunate.
The hatred and prejudice towards so many exists for so many and need to end. Suicide rate is nine times higher than the general population.
Geena Rocero spoke of her time during the filming of this video as it being her, “real coming out.” She no longer wishes to live her truth alone, but rather as a transgender woman in support of others in need of support.
Gender assignment sometimes does not match, and she states, “It is a conversation we need to have, to help others,” so they may live openly exposed as gender proud.
She ended stating that there is a lot of work that needs to be done, and the need for the cultivation of understanding, with questions being answered.
Understanding needs to be extended towards all, with compassion and freedom for all to live and be as we identify ourselves being, and not merely existing as we are assigned to being.
We have come far in our journey towards abolishing shame for being who and what we are, and were born to be, but we still need to keep moving towards greater acceptance because we truly are of one family, from Mother Earth, with all our diversity, and it is as the Dalai Lama says, “We must honor all paths.”
How boring the world would be if we only had one flower, rather than the many that come to make our fields colorful in spring. People are like that, too.
“There is a field out beyond all right-doing and wrong-doing, meet me there.” ~ Rumi.
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Editor: Renée Picard