One of the things I’ve done since Yarn Therapy (and its predecessor) started was some community philanthropy with business funds. I am seriously small potatoes and this has been coming out of my salary end so it’s not anything huge like “start a food kitchen” or “redecorate women's refuge” but I try to do what I can with what I have to make life a little better for someone.
Since 2021, I've been playing binder*/gaff* fairy godmother for anyone who needs some safe gender affirming clothing but don’t have the means or the support at home to get some. It’s purely been by quiet word of mouth via the local rainbow groups. Fun fact (and I'm using "fun" in entirely the wrong context here!) but statistics have shown that suicide rates for young trans people decrease by 60% just by having 1 supportive or affirming adult in their world. Seriously! What a huge impact we can have just by doing this one little thing together.
I can absolutely attest to feeling like you’re not completely cocking up parenting when your kid comes home and declares the need for the binder fairy godmother…and I’ve had both kids do this.
Demand is growing.
I’m thrilled and delighted to be able to help but also…I feel very much like I can’t say no to anyone (gender affirmation is so important! And sadly there are an awful lot of young people who aren't being affirmed, and aren't safe to be themselves at home so asking for gender affirming clothing is out of the question) and I am struggling more than a little to keep up. I’m a bit nervous about how to be able to keep doing this if the demand continues at this rate.
And that's where you come in. If you would like to and are able to, please donate a little - every cent goes to the godmother project, and every item delivered makes a difference.
I’d be lying if I said one of my big dreams for this isn’t to have a set of different sized binders & gaffs here so people could try on to find the right size for them straight away. Maybe even a stash where they could instantly get one. Can you imagine the instant joy and affirmation?!? (At the moment, they measure up and pick the size they think will work best - and if appropriate or they feel comfortable, try on one of the sizes I have here - and then I order a new one for them. And they get here in 3-6 weeks if the postal system is feeling friendly…)
So I set up this page - a no obligation “tip jar” type deal with the opportunity for you to donate to this program if you feel so moved.
I should clearly state that I won't ever have "personal reviews" or anything like that here …I’m not about to do a “this is X. Your donations helped X safely compress their unwanted genitals so they could get through a day without dealing with crippling dysphoria” type post- the whole idea about this is it’s under the radar for the end users. Which I guess is why I’m nervous about asking for help and have put it off for so long?
Binders range from $45-$60 each and gaffes are around $30. This number grows exponentially if I need to source them overseas because the shipping is monstrous, but often the time delay is less since the local makers can only do them in batches.
You're awesome for reading this. And if you're able to help and feel you'd like to contribute to some young people feeling less distressed and more empowered, I would dearly love to accept your help! Thank you!
*For anyone wondering, a binder is similar to a crop top but is reinforced and compressive. It’s worn under regular clothes, and is a really gender affirming piece of clothing that works by flattening the chest area. It's perfect for people for whom having breasts or a more overtly female shape is distressing.
Gaffs are a type of compressive underwear that flattens the groin area, and is perfect for anyone who wants less of a groin bulge.
There are absolutely ways that people can (and have!) tried to alter their appearance using other means, but a lot of these - like duct tape and ace bandages - can cause serious injuries and do some pretty nasty stuff to bodies, never mind the shame and mental angst. It's really important to me to ensure people can be themselves, and be safe.