There is a need right now, more than ever before, and I am not just being prosaic, for connection. I can only speak for the people I know, but despair is the real enemy here, despite the frightening specter of Covid and the fact that the US government seems to be gunning for rights of all the vulnerable communities under its jurisdiction. So many are unemployed, and it seems like hate-speech has been gaining traction (or at least media coverage) and SOME people just will not wear their masks! It’s all craziness and uncertainty according to SOME people, and it is even harder to handle without the hugs and hand-holding that we are accustomed to receiving for comfort. People are stepping up, though. Every person that reads this blog must know that there are people out there who care and want to help. People like the ones at TransNewYork who are taking action to provide that help.
I don’t generally do a lot of plugging for our website, just because I figure that if you find your way to our blog, you already know what we do…but in this time of crisis, if my words have managed to help anyone in any way, it is because of the mission statement of the organization of TransNewYork to provide care and support to the trans community while simultaneously strengthening the ties of the community itself.
Therefore, the LGBTQ Counseling Services have begun providing support via call, text, chat or teletherapy. The trans community, in particular, is struggling right now, and if living situations are unsure or homelife itself is precarious, setting up a therapy session on the fly can be a lifeline towards getting yourself to a better place, both physically and emotionally.
This is not just about getting therapy concerning issues like gender dysphoria and sexual abuse but providing a real substantive hub for dealing with ALL the practical matters and problems that folks in the LGBTQI community face every day.
Other topics covered include the following:
- Alcohol and Drug Abuse
- Gender transition support services
- Evaluation for hormone letters and Gender Confirmation letters
- Medical Insurance evaluation
- Referrals for surgical and non-surgical procedures
- Support for parents, partners, and other family members
- Workplace coaching
- Personal development
TransNewYork also offers in-person/online Group Counseling, where all the same support is available in a setting of vetted group attendees. This can be really helpful in combatting that feeling of isolation that many suffer from, while also capitalizing on the shared experience of others to assure you that you are not alone in what you are going through. Sharing with others and hearing about similar experiences of hardship and of triumphs is meant to give participants a nurturing, connective environment for growth, acceptance, and evolution into who each person really is.
Family Support is also available to offer group meetings that offer education and awareness to spouses, parents, siblings, and other relatives. This is a great opportunity to offer support and education to family members as well as develop the relationships between family members through transition in a safe environment.
There is no one size fits all when it comes to providing help to everyone that needs it in the LGBTQI community. Every person deals with trauma, and uncertainty differently, and it can give the perception of being on the outside of what is “normal”. What TransNewYork is doing with offering these services in as many formats as possible, is to demonstrate that you a part of a community. In the age of social distancing, we may not be able to hold your hand, but we can listen.