It’s funny to hear people talk about “The Surgery”, as if there was only 1 surgery to being a trans woman. Actually, there are several. And not every procedure is covered by health insurance.
My name is Margo. I’m a 32 year old trans woman. I’m 9 months into my transition. I live in NYC, and I’m struggling just to survive. I need your help.
Transitioning…sucks. It really, really sucks. Don’t get me wrong. I never once, not even for a moment, had second thoughts about what I am doing. I’m becoming the Me I knew I was always supposed to be, and that is such an unreal, liberating feeling.
But it is a second, manual, lateral puberty, and incredibly expensive. I’ve already sunk thousands of dollars into laser hair removal, a brand new wardrobe, good makeup, doctor visits, court fees for the name change, hair, nails…the list keeps growing. I know I have accomplished so much and have a lot to be proud of; I’ve come a long way, but I know I’m not done. I’m not where I need to be yet.
Most insurance plans cover “Bottom Surgery” (vaginoplasty) and a tracheal shave (Adam’s Apple removal); I had the latter done in May. That procedure was 1000% essential. I could not pass in public as female without it, and I absolutely could not stand having a giant, protruding Adam’s Apple any more. It absolutely disgusted me, made me want to die, and forced me to walk with my head down. Now that it’s gone, I walk with my head held high, neck exposed to the world. When someone wants to clock a trans woman in public, they usually know to look for that. But there are other subconscious “tells” constantly at play.
I need FFS – Facial Feminization Surgery.
What this is is several different reconstructive surgery procedures to soften the features of my face. It requires sculpting the bones in my skull to remove all the effects testosterone had on me when I went through my incorrect puberty as a kid.
THIS IS NOT A VANITY PROJECT:
I know what you’re probably thinking because I hear this constantly from everyone except fellow trans women: “You don’t need to get all that! You’re absolutely gorgeous just as you are!”
I would like to press a very critical point:
This isn’t about me looking pretty to others; this is about me looking female to myself.
I can’t STAND the way I look now. My brow and chin are such hard, masculine features. Every time I look in the mirror I just see a man’s face all dolled up. I feel like a fraud, and NO amount of outside praise is going to fix that. This runs much, much deeper than simple vanity. The dysphoria I have with my face consumes 80% of any waking thought of mine. Go pick up any How-To-Draw book and look at the difference between drawing males and females. THAT is the stuff I am trying to correct, and it’s much more expensive and difficult to do in real life than in drawings.
(Also, did you see the butt-chin in my driver license?! Horrible.)
I cannot begin to describe how painful all this is to me, and how incredibly guilty I feel asking for financial help to people who see this simply as some sort of vanity project.
Even if I’m wearing a low-cut dress – boobs clearly visible underneath – and femme my features to the max, I still get called “sir”. I can’t live like this. It is an absolute Hell.
MY SAVIOR, THE ARTIST:
Have you ever heard the old adage, “ya don’t f@%# with your face”? Well, I’m f@%#ing with mine. Terrifying. I’ve seen the results of hatchet jobs. You don’t want to go to some first-year residency doctor. You want an artist. The doctor I have chosen is Dr. Harrison Lee, a professional who was recommended to me by two separate trans women on opposite sides of the country. He’s one of the best, if not THE best.
When I went in for the consultation, they did a price break down. The total amount is $27,400. On top of that, I would need to hire a nursing service to take care of me immediately after surgery, which is an additional couple of thousand dollars. Then there are the unforeseen hidden costs of recovery, which God knows how much that will be. So, I’m rounding up to $30,000 just to cover all my bases, and I’m prepared to pay whatever else out of pocket.
Thirty grand – no debt, no nonsense, no wage garnishing. This isn’t even a “new” face; it’s the face I know I should have been born with. It’s the face I would have gotten if puberty #1 didn’t make me grow in such an awful and painful way.
Please. If you can find it in your heart to contribute to my new life I would be forever in your debt. I feel wretched being reduced to begging like this. Trans girls typically resort to prostitution to pay for their surgeries. Please don’t make me go that route. It’s super dangerous and illegal.
I can’t go on for an indefinite number of years looking like this and feeling like I’m wearing a helmet with a chin strap and nose guard under my skin. I’m selling what I can and saving where I can, but I really need your help. Please.
Thank you for reading, and I appreciate whatever support you can offer. And if you can, please share my story with your network. Take care and God bless.