PEER SUPPORT GROUP

 

In response to community safety regarding COVID-19, we will be holding Trans Peer Support Group remotely until further notice.

To receive the passcode for support group, please RSVP here (by Tuesday EOD) or if you have previously been added – check Discord! *Note: the password will remain the same unless there has been a breech in security – you can use the same code week to week unless you hear otherwise!*

To join this week's support group, click here (live Wednesdays 7-9pm PST)

Our trans led peer support group has been meeting every week no matter the weather or holidays for over 40 years. Our peer support groups provide a great place for trans folks, gender nonconforming and questioning folks, friends, family and community allies to come together for information and mutual support.

Groups are facilitated by trained peer-facilitators from our own communities. Discussions are free ranging, confidential and focused on the interests and concerns of the people who attend the group. This is also a good place to come to get information and referrals for other services you may need. There is no cost to attend our support group. Our support group is always drop-in, there is no need to RSVP.

Each week, our support group starts with a check in, followed by community announcements, and then a group discussion. Depending on the night, we will offer several different group discussion formats. Here's a breakdown of what they are:

  • 1st Wednesday of the month: Breakout groups for trans feminine people, trans masculine people, SOFFAs (significant others, friends, family, and allies), All Gender Expressions (AGE). We also host a QLaw Clinic, wherein attendees can meet one-on-one with a legal advisor to discuss civil law issues.
  • 2nd Wednesday of the month: We meet as a single, large group.
  • 3rd Wednesday of the month: We break out into small groups based on topics chosen by attendees and also host SOFFA and STEEP (Seattle Transgender Economic Empowerment Project) break out groups.
  • 4th Wednesday of the month: We meet as a single, large group.
  • 5th Wednesday of the month (if there is one!): We offer various workshops as well as a discussion group to provide support. Check the calendar to see what workshops will be offered next! If you are interested in offering a workshop please email us at support@ingersollgendercenter.org for more information.

Our Community Agreements and Expectations

Our support groups are trans-centered spaces.

Ingersoll Gender Center is an organization led by transgender and gender nonconforming people. We're passionate about building and holding spaces for folks in our communities that are centered on our needs, stories and shared experiences. We welcome anyone who is exploring their gender identity or those who are actively working to build skills to support trans and gender nonconforming folks in their lives. If you are an ally, we’re so happy you’re interested in attending, but please note that we will prioritize trans or questioning folks when calling on people to speak. We ask that you save questions about the trans experience for our wonderful SOFFA (significant others, friends, families, and allies) group on the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of the month.

Facilitators may ask you to rephrase things or not share as often.

We're really excited that you've joined us for a support group meeting! We want to make sure that everyone feels comfortable sharing when they're moved to. Sometimes that means if you've spoken multiple times facilitators may make space for other folks who haven't had a chance to share yet to share. Similarly, if something you share violates a community agreement one of our facilitators may invite you to share something differently or not share something that is harmful to others. 

Community Agreements:

We value accessibility:

With the large number of folks who attend our meetings it's very easy for things to get loud. Please mute your mic when you are not speaking to avoid additional background noise. To join the queue to share, please use the non-verbal cues which can be found in the "participants" tab to "raise your hand" After you've shared, please lower your hand. Please do not use other cues unless asked to do so. If you would rather not share verbally, you can share via the chat and a facilitator will share it out for you. 

We understand many of you are calling from the comfort of your own home – please conduct yourself as you would if we were in a shared physical space together. Please turn off your video camera if you plan on moving around, are participating in side activities, or demonstrating any behaviors or actions that could otherwise distract other attendees. Additionally, if you will be using a virtual background, please pick one for the entirety of the evening.

This is a space where folks who are not out, not fully out, or are currently exploring their gender identity/expression are welcomed and belong – maintaining confidentiality is priority.

There's no one way to be trans:

There are so many different ways to be trans and we try to lift that up by centering our own experiences and not dictating to others what it means to be trans or how they have to navigate their own transition. We also encourage folks not to offer advice unless it is explicitly asked for.

We acknowledge that oppression exists, challenge it in our spaces and work collectively to combat it in our own thinking and actions:

As trans people we all have to to navigate oppressive systems and many of us have first hand experience being the target of transphobic comments or violence. We also know that other forms of oppression reinforce the transphobia many of us have to navigate daily. We aim to nurture a brave, earnest and learning space but we challenge each other to eliminate racist, sexist, classist, ablest and otherwise oppressive language and comments so that everyone can participate fully. 

Participate Fully:

Sometimes participating is sharing your insight or experiences; sometimes it’s listening and giving space to others to share. Be mindful of the space you’re taking up and don’t be disruptive during group discussions. Raise your hand to share; don't interrupt. New voices will be prioritized towards the end.