I recently took part in a trans- clothing drive led by my universities LGBTQ+ organisation. It was the perfect opportunity to do some good with all those clothes that I don’t really need, or that have been passed down to me over the years. As a cis person, it’s very easy to forget the important role that clothes play in our lives, and this event was a well- timed reminder of how clothing shapes our identities.
Here is part of the description from the wonderful Saints LGBT who organised the event:
‘There are many difficulties that one faces when reconciling gender identity with the gender that is assigned at birth; psychological distress, social stigma, and cultural boundaries. It’s an incredibly difficult time, and with the poor NHS provision for transgender and gender non-conforming individuals, one that is expensive.
Clothing is something that cis-gendered people often underestimate, and it is inherently gendered. Finding a sense of style and identity within the clothing selections that are made is a hugely important step in expressing one’s gender, yet one that is highly expensive. Adapting to a changing body is difficult, and developing a sense of true style that has always been inhibited by societal oppression, even harder.’
Is there a similar cause you could give to? Most of us have clothes we could throw away, so why not put them to some use, rather than keeping the clutter in our wardrobes. Whether it’s donating to trans groups, giving to charity shops, or providing for refugees- there is so much good that our unwanted clothes can do.