What Not To Ask Your Trans Friends

Many people know at least one transgender individual (whether or not they are aware of it). For those who are new to the nuances of gender identity, it might be a struggle to know what questions are appropriate to ask and what to keep to yourself. For those curious people who have the best intentions, here are a few things you should probably avoid asking the transgender people in your life.

What Procedures They Have Had

Whether you are wondering whether or not they have had top surgery, bottom surgery, laser hair removal Columbia MD, or hormone replacement medications, it is important to remember that this is personal information that your friend may not want to discuss outside of a doctor’s office. Just as it would be rude to ask anyone else about their medical history, the same boundary applies to transgender individuals. 

When They Knew

Some people knew that they were transgender for as long as they can remember. Others may be in their 50s before they come to this realization. Asking your friend when they became aware of their gender can come across as invalidating of the wide variety of experiences that exist within the transgender community.

What Their Birthname Is

Some transgender people choose to continue identifying with the name they were given at birth. However, many do not, and a large portion of transgender people experience a lot of discomfort around the subject of their birthname because of the amount of dysphoria it gives them. Similarly, you should not ask to see pictures of them from before their transition. Even with the best intentions, these questions can be uncomfortable and even painful.

Each individual will have their own set of limitations on what they will or won’t answer regarding their transition or history. No two trans people are the same. When in doubt, it is best to ask your friend what they are comfortable answering and stick to that.