Christi Salcedo, a breast cancer survivor and mom, wrote a viral Facebook post that casts a new light on the debate over trans people and public bathrooms. North Carolina's HB2 may divide bathrooms based on genitalia, but it leads to assholes judging each other in line for the stalls, trying to "investigate" someone's gender presentation. Women undergoing breast cancer treatment often lose the traditionally feminine signals of hair and breasts, and these transgender bathroom laws could lead to confrontation for survivors.
Salcedo first describes the tragic reality of cancer, and how it can change one's sense of self:
While I can see that the pink ribbon brings comfort to some... I want you to know that breast cancer is ugly. It's not an easy or a glam cancer to have. In fact cancers are one & the same to me. Cells run wild. Immune system compromised.
It robbed me of a precious part of myself that I once nourished my children with. It took away part of my sexual identity. Now that's if we're just talking about my breasts or my former breasts I'll say.
When I chose to not have reconstruction it was for many reasons but most importantly it was because my children had seen me down enough. I wanted them to see me strong again. I wanted them to have their Mother they knew.
Without breasts, Salcedo has had awkward experiences out in public, similar to those of trans people.
Until recently I have been very comfortable with my decision. However... The great bathroom debate of 2016 has hurt more than just the transgender community.
It has hurt us survivors. Recently I notice more eyes trying to figure me out. At the grocery store, restaurants ... Walmart was the worst. I want to scream, YES! You are seeing it right! This is Breast Cancer... Please check yourself!' But instead I let my eyes meet theirs in an almost plea for a change in what has become our society.
She calls for tolerance and acceptance, and for others not to make peoples' personal appearances their own business.
I am personally of the belief that no transgender person wants to cause trouble in a bathroom. People just want to use the restroom. There have been terrible acts happening in public restrooms long before this. This is why my children never use a public restroom without me. You don't have to agree with me & I don't have to agree with you. It's ok.
Persons undergoing cancer treatment or post cancer treatment may lack hair & wear a baseball hat. They may have undergone a mastectomy like myself. Please consider these things. Rant over.
Discriminatory laws, sometimes, discriminate against more people than just the targeted.