Hey, there. For those of you who don't know me, I'm Noah. I'm a trans guy and I need to get something off my chest. No, literally. These need to come off!
I'm a research assistant and getting into grad school soon. Before moving on to to this next step in my career and life, I want to finally feel like myself and be seen as myself. To do this, I need top surgery. My surgery is set for June 4, 2019. This will be a double incision mastectomy, removing breast tissue and sculpting a more masculine chest shape. Not only will it let me feel like myself and be happier with my body than I've ever been, it will make me feel safer in public.
I stared taking testosterone a little over a year ago. (Just look at that stubble!)
It has been amazing. It's changed my life. I'm happier, more outgoing, more confident, and more open. But I still struggle with dysphoria. For the last two years, I start my day by binding my chest in order to feel more like myself. Binding is painful, restricts breathing, and can cause permanent damage over time. And even though I pass more often than not, I still get scared walking into the men's room everyday at work and in public. My head is constantly a flurry of "Is my binder sticking out of my shirt? Is my binder positioned right so my chest doesn't look too big? Can they tell?" I want to live my life without these constant worries. These worries stop me from going to the gym in comfortable and appropriate clothing, running outside in the summer, and swimming at the beach. I want to live my life comfortably in my body without fear. And so, the next step for me is top surgery.
I had this procedure planned with another surgeon, and then my insurance changed and it's no longer covered. Everything from surgery and anesthesia to travel and hotel will be out of pocket now.
Surgery costs $6500, hospital fees $1700, and travel and hotel for me and my mom $1500. I haven't even calculated yet what renting a car and food expenses will be, plus after care prescriptions, scar treatment, compression binder, etc. I'm estimating at least $11,000-12,000 total. And a few months after surgery I'll be moving cross country for grad school. Lots of great changes and experiences are coming my way and I can't wait! But its going to cost a lot of money. I've already paid for the hotel and travel as well as the initial $500 deposit, about $2000.
I've been saving up for a year, and with the help of my mom, I am happy to say I'm a little over halfway to my goal of $12,000 (counting what I've already paid). I've been looking for a second job, but it's hard to find somewhere willing to work around my full time schedule. I've been putting 18% of my monthly earnings in a savings account, spending $50 on groceries a month, selling board games, comics, and video games, and collecting every coin I get back as change (or find in the couch). But even with all this, I won't make my goal on time without help.
If you feel so inclined, any donation helps and is greatly appreciated. If you can't donate, you can help by sharing this fundraiser and recommending books and movies to entertain me during recovery.
Thanks for your support in anyway you show it!
Your friendly neighborhood trans man,
Noah Jacob DeFino
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