2020 has been a real step back for the Trans community in the UK and all over the world. Essential surgeries are becoming increasingly hard to access making the lives of our trans siblings even more challenging than they already are.
We come to you on the behalf of Bel. After a great deal of gentle encouragement, we have convinced Bel that it is time to reach out and ask for your help.
"Hi I'm Bel, I'm a 22 year old student from South East London and my identity is non-binary (they/them). I have been on the waiting list for the NHS London Gender Identity Clinic since I was 19 and have been told that I am nowhere nearer to getting an appointment. Even after a first appointment (which would not be on the cards for a few years at least), non-binary people are so often traumatically mistreated and rejected by doctors at the GIC because we do not qualify as 'trans enough'. This deems us as unworthy of treatment in their eyes, despite all the many studies countering this and proving the validity of non-binary identities.
I live my life in a constant state of mental pain due to dysphoria and physical pain due to binding my chest, which I have been doing daily for 6 years. Despite my ribs being damaged and my breathing being compromised, some days I physically cannot bring myself to take my chest binder off - often wearing it 10-16 hours at a time. I am also a dancer meaning I am exercising daily for up to 8 hours, also wearing a binder. For perspective, the medically recommended amount of time to wear a binder is 4 hours maximum (without a break) and to completely remove when exercising.
I have struggled for a long time with severe mental illnesses which are inherently linked to my gender dysphoria so to get Top Surgery would improve my mental health tenfold. To not be in pain everyday in my body seems like such an unreachable goal, one I had basically given up on, but I'm at a point where I can see that I am worthy of a happier existence in my body."
Please help us give Bel the life they deserve to live, a life so many take for granted. If you can't donate then please do share it around, lets make this a reality!
Thank you so much for your time and donations!
Ellie and Bel xo