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What storytelling means to today's TRANSGENERATION

Storytelling has long been used as a tool for recording people’s history and to pass down wisdom from one generation to the next. But for those who aren’t considered part of society’s in crowd, sharing personal stories takes on even greater meaning. Telling your story and listening to narratives from ‘others’ like you, can help you feel connected and grounded in the world. It helps to know that people, whose lives look like yours, have been here before and survived. Whether we’re aware of it or not, it’s instinctual for us to want the comfort of seeing our experiences reflected back. Reality TV and the web have given individuals’ voices a much wider reach. But the truth is it’s still a privileged few whose stories are chosen to be told. And unfortunately transgender folks rarely make the cut.

However, where there’s a will there’s a way. Transgender youth have plenty to say and plenty of creativity to say it with (TRANSGENERATION makes that pretty clear).  Like the elders that came before them, trans* youth have carved out their own spaces to talk about their lives. Across online channels like YouTube and Tumblr, they share feelings, experiences and advice. Their storytelling says to the world, ‘I am here!’ and to each other, ‘You’re not alone.’ But most importantly, that connection is about supporting and giving others the strength to go on. If you have not stumbled on any of these spaces yet, check out Testimony, an exhibition of LGBTQ youth stories worldwide. Maybe you’ll be inspired to share your story too.

Submitted by CAMERON OVERSTREET

About Cameron:

I am a pre-t and pre-op FTM who is here to blog his life :) . Ok, not really my life but I AM here to give you guides, facts, and anything else for being FTM. I am doing this to know the journey I have come and to help you out. I think it is new to see a teen experiencing being transgender.

Submitted by AFREEN CHAUDRY

I have survived through galling, moonless nights and they are turning into flaccid monsters. I dread the clock when its strikes eleven at night and television sets, radios, music- all whirl to death and A deafening silence warps me into a grave. I have so much of loneliness to share now but absolutely no one to begin with.

Submitted by MARK AGUHAR

I Hope Someone Keeps Blogging for the Brown Gurls

For the fat brown gurls
Who couldn’t even dare to dream that femme was an option for them.
Who thought glitter and guts were only for the white, thin, traditionally pretty gurls.
For the loud and tough gurls.
For the gurls who are told they aren’t woman enough or lady like.
For the gurls who don’t give a fuck about your Eurocentric, heteropatriarchal beauty standards.
Who could care less about what you’re idea of flattering means.
For the brown transgurls
For the angry brown gurls
Keep blogging for brown gurls
Please.

(Mark’s work wasn’t part of Testimony, but their voice was strongly present and loudly heard in spaces occupied by trans youth. Mark’s art powerfully explored queer expression and called out the societal norms that keep people suppressed. To honor them, we’re sadly sharing their story in remembrance, as Mark chose to take their own life earlier this year.)

Testimony will be shown at Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art as part of the All Out Arts Fresh Fruit Festival in New York from July 17-28 and YOU can be a part of it! Find out more information and SUBMIT your story here!

Other storytelling spaces we love:

Watch TRANSGENERATION on Tuesdays at 10P. Four college students are changing more than just their major.