Sara’s bedroom was lacking in designer gowns; it was, for that matter, lacking furniture.Her clothing sat in folded piles around the perimeter, a sheet on the carpet was a makeshift bed until a mattress could arrive in a few weeks. In her 50s, she was “rebuilding,” after a chaotic span in which she lost a job, lost relationships, lost use of the sputtering pickup where she’d slept when she was too tired to keep looking for dingy motels.
But it was better, she’d decided when she transitioned four years ago, to have men stare at her chest than to have them scrutinize her face and ask whether she was a man or a woman.Her previous apartment — gone, after Sara determined that if it came down to spending 0 per month of her dwindling savings on testosterone blockers and estrogen, or putting the same amount toward housing, it was the pills and patches that were, she said, “essential and lifesaving.” On Facebook, she railed against these setbacks to her friends, ruefully but not without optimism, noting that her experiences were shared by so many of the transgender women whose stories she’d heard.They also reflected the academic research: Transgender people were four times more likely than the general population to live in poverty (“Riddle me this, Batman; [I] have this donated canned food, but no microwave,” Sara lamented in 2012).Ross, who is the CEO of Trans Tech Social, an organization that aims to train and employ LGBT individuals in media and tech jobs, sat down for an interview recently with USA TODAY Network for a new video interactive called #In Their Words: Being transgender in the U. The interactive includes candid interviews with six trans people, almost all of whom talked about dating and the search for love as being difficult."As a trans person, I have a whole extra, kind of, suite of disclosures that I have to deal with and a lot of fears," Richards, the co-writer and co-producer of a TV show specifically about trans women and dating called , said."Often if someone wants to date me because they know I'm trans, it's for specifically sexual reasons and it doesn't ever lead to a relationship," she said. Campbell Mc Collum, is a trans man who founded The Campbell Center, an organization that provides care for people with mental health issues.And if someone is attracted to her without knowing she's trans, they lose interest once they find out, according to Richards."Straight men in particular are afraid that liking a trans woman somehow makes them gay," Richards said. Campbell Mc Collum said concern about dating is an issue in the trans community."I know that a lot of trans people feel like they will never be loved and that is another reason why we have such a high suicide rate as well because we don't know if people will be able to accept us as husbands and wives and lovers and partners," he said.