‘I Woke Up From A Gender-Affirming Surgery And Was Misgendered By The Nurse Staff’
Brandi Ahzionae is an African American trans queer woman living in NYC.
She is a model and activist, having appeared in the groundbreaking documentary, Walking While Trans, which explores the discrimination trans people face as they go about their daily lives.
In an interview with WaxOh editor Emily Lowinger for the #WeNeedAButton campaign, Brandi explained that discrimination and abuse by medical professionals is a common occurrence for trans people.
“Amongst the trans community, we all share similar stories of being misgendered in medical facilities after surgeries, in our most vulnerable states,” Brandi said. “It’s about time that we started bringing attention to that.”
“I woke up from a gender affirming surgery and was misgendered by the nurse staff. I was extremely nauseous and she was trying to get me to drink ginger ale and she kept saying, ‘Sir, sir’ at the beginning of her sentences. It was very shocking. I think after the second time she said it, I asked her not to do it again and at that point, she stopped. I rested up, and when I was ready to go, my friend was there to pick me up. And as the nurse was talking to my friend, she was still misgendering me to him. And so that, to me, was just like one of those things, where I thought, ‘We have to do better.’
Here I am as a trans person – and yes, they know this, because we’re doing surgery to better affirm my trans-ness. But yet there’s this nurse who was either not properly trained or just doesn’t care enough to use the correct pronouns.
I still think about that, to be honest with you. And it still happens. When I’m sick and have to go to those urgent care places – they never gender you correctly. And to me it’s more upsetting because my legal identity and gender have all been changed and I still get misgendered at medical facilities. And it’s based solely on their own personal feeling towards me, not about facts, you know? It’s just judgement and it’s bias and it’s horrific.”
If you have your own story that you’d like to share, or if you’d like to learn more about the #WeNeedAButton campaign, visit www.waxoh.com/weneedabutton