It’s no secret that trans women face transphobia and discrimination in all kinds of online spaces. This discrimination often comes from a lack of understanding and representation of trans and gender-nonconforming individuals, resulting in people being careless about their words or actions.
Many trans people believe they would find love and support in online communities where their accomplishments and stories would be celebrated. However, being deadnamed, misgendered, and harassed online is a common experience for many trans women, which can be emotionally devastating.
Let’s take a deeper look at the types of discrimination trans women face online.
Many trans individuals change their names. A new name signifies a fresh start for them and is a life-affirming step in their journey, making it an important part of their transition.
However, when someone uses their old name, this experience isn’t just invalidating but also traumatizing. Many trans women are deadnamed online, which often feels like they aren’t supported in their transition. This causes a lot of hurtful emotions and makes them feel like their new identity isn’t respected.
Many trans women and queer people are often asked inappropriate questions online, like questions about their sex life.
These kinds of questions can feel super invasive and make a trans woman feel violated or obligated to perform emotional labor. This is because most people make assumptions about their body parts and what kind of partners they prefer. This lack of sensitivity around a trans person’s relationship with their body can be very painful and triggering for anyone.
Fetishization that involves any race, gender identity, sexuality, or ability, is oppressive and dehumanizing. This can make trans women feel unsafe since, most of the time, this is nonconsensual and an invasion of their boundaries.
People who objectify and fetishize trans women are reducing them to just sexual objects. This experience can be extremely hurtful and disturbing, and it can cause lasting harm.
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