TRANSCENDING TOUCH; MASSAGE THERAPY FOR TRANSGENDER INDIVIDUALS
For most, physical touch can be a source of strength and comfort. However, with members of the trans community and others in the LGBTQ community it can be a source of anxiety and fear. Massage therapy is used as a way to alleviate physical pain and tension but for those used to being harassed, discriminated against, or even experienced violence because of their identity (which includes medical professionals,) it is something that is a source of stress.
Not well-known to the general public is a crisis of trans healthcare discrimination. The scars left behind from such experiences can make trusting a healthcare professional difficult. According to the latest statistics, 28% of trans individuals do not seek medical attention due to this fear of discrimination. A staggering 70% of trans individuals report having experienced healthcare discrimination first-hand. What does this mean for these individuals? Many aren’t receiving the care they need now which contributes to more serious health problems later.
In diverse and heavily populated cities, the fear of mistreatment because of gender, appearance, or sexual orientation, is less than it is in a rural community with less diversity and knowledge of the LGBTQ community and others who prefer not to conform to labels or gender. A human is a human. Right?
I’m not going to admit to having a great knowledge or experience with the societal issues we face today. I may not know all the terms and politically correct words to express my concern in this matter. But I do care. As a licensed massage therapist and a healthcare professional I want for those hesitating to schedule a massage to feel confident in their choice. I’d like to transform whatever negative experiences you’ve had into a positive one in a comfortable and professional setting. I know that trans-related surgeries, medications, and hormones have their side effects and massage can help relieve some of these. Country Massage welcomes everyone and doesn’t tolerate discriminatory or negative remarks made in reference to transgender individuals and members of the LGBTQ community.