Today is Trans Day of Remembrance (TDOR for short), so I wanted to take a few seconds to talk about that.
Today is a memorial for every trans person who has died in the past year due to hate. Whether it was as a victim of a hatecrime, the result of mistreatment by the medical system, the fault of the criminal justice system or law enforcement, or social pressures and self-loathing leading to suicide, today is the day that we’ve set aside to honor our dead. It’s a time for mourning and a time for reflection.
Being trans in society is a radical act. Living your truth as a trans individual, publicly or privately, disrupts the status quo. Not everyone will be able to understand you or your experiences. Living this way is draining. It’s scary. It’s isolating. But, and here’s the important part, you need to keep surviving.
To all of the trans youth out there: find your community. Take care of other trans kids. Protect each other and locate spaces where you can explore your own identities. If you feel safe, talk about your experiences. You’re the next generation. Be proud of your history and don’t be afraid to keep pushing for change.
To all of the trans adults: keep going. There are few things more exhausting than continuing to push against a society that has made clear that it doesn’t want you, but you need to keep pushing for yourselves and for your communities. Mentor younger trans people and help out where you can. Support other trans adults in their efforts to live an honest life. Keep on protesting, keep on writing to your congresspeople, keep on representing in every area of society.
To everyone who is mourning the loss of a loved one today: our thoughts and prayers are with you. Know that you are not alone. Take the time you need to care for yourself and to grieve. And, from the bottom of my heart, I am sorry for your loss. My inbox is open if you ever need someone to talk to.
Today, we mourn for every trans person who didn’t make it this far. Their lives were cut short due to injustice and prejudice. Tomorrow, we go back to fighting for equality and acceptance in the hopes that one day, we won’t have to mourn.
Here’s to TDOR and to every trans life we’ve lost. Here’s to a future where we no longer need a TDOR.