Let’s talk with Eva
Hello readers, hope you are all in good health, in this edition I will delve on love, focusing on how we can love our own bodies as transdiverse people, but also on how we can teach others to love our bodies, because if you don’t know how to love your own body how can you teach someone else to love you.
The body is such a fragile yet fundamental part of our existence deserving care and affection. The goal for most of us is being able to truly accept and love our beautiful yet different bodies.
A transgender body goes through extensive psychological assessments followed by medical interventions such as Hormone replacement treatment (HRT) or even surgical procedures to alter the not so desirable. What most don’t see is the harsh emotional battles within, ranging from the self-hatred and the unstable view of the physical form in society.
From personal experience, I have encountered much disrespect throughout my transition concerning my body. Not allowing my development with pride on the daily milestones achieved in my physical appearance, it all overshadowed by empty vessels spreading judgment.
From the group of guys on the train station walking past yelling slurs of dirty words degrading me to the core. The colleagues in the staff room discussing my reproductive system or the lack thereof. It simply adds to an accumulated voice ringing in my ears, down my spine on how little worth I have in the minds of the empty.
Yet it is so important for all of us be it with little or large scale development in our bodies still be accepted and hopeful. Not allowing negative thoughts or comments to halt our progress.
It has been a difficult road getting to loving my body as is and as it changes but I am happier and look forward to the daily documentation of life. I would like to share some simple yet vital skills or exercises to assist in self-love:
- Have a daily look in the mirror and a good one at that, complementing yourself on the courage and resilience. Verbally expressing the beauty for yourself be it one single part or gradually getting to the complete body.
- Surround yourself with positive people be it socially or online to boost the self-esteem.
- Allow yourself to seek therapy if there is no current support system present.
- Enjoy life, do things that bring joy and encourage positive thinking. Engage in activities with like-minded people.
- Evidence suggests that an overall wellbeing can boost self-esteem/self-love including successful personal relationships, mental security, a thriving career and a balanced lifestyle.
In ending our bodies are the structure which keeps us living and breathing, be it Transgender or not. We all deserve sincere recognition for our worth as human beings. The Transgender community in rural areas and countries with conservative deep seated homophobic values should not let circumstances halt freedom of expression and love.
Eva is a qualified and practising counsellor, fashion designer and Queerstion Southern Africa Co-Editor you can reach her on firstname.lastname@example.org