Last month, Geena Rocero of Gender Proud came back to the Philippines and had a conversation with us, telling how essential our stories are, and how important it is to tell our stories. Stories of both happiness and struggles need to be shared.
We have no law that supports gender recognition, no law that protects the LGBTIQ community. The public does not understand gender identity and its difference with sexual orientation. Hence, transgender women are still regarded as gay guys, and in layman’s terms we are being referred to as bakla, bading, bayot, agay. These terms refer to sexual orientation, and has nothing to do with gender identity. But I cannot blame the public because we have limited access to information regarding SOGIE (sexual orientation, gender identity, and expression).
We are only just tolerated, and I am done with the toleration. We are now asking for acceptance. Let us be part of the community as Filipino citizens with laws that support and protect Filipino transgender people and the rest of the LGBTIQ community.
In these videos I created, you’ll meet some very brave trans women. I ask that you open your heart and your mind to their strength and courage.
Being transgender and deaf
The struggle of being a transgender student
A transgender woman's dream job
Maki Gingoyon is a marketing director of a dating site for transgender women and men. She is an advocate for transgender rights, a model, and a transgender beauty queen. She blogs to share her thoughts on LGBT rights and issues.