Edit: In the time it took me to write this post, Merritt’s fundraiser is now 125% of it’s original goal. However, any additional funds you have to offer would certainly help her out in ongoing treatments or even in helping make additional inspirational indie games!
Merritt Kopas, an indie game designer and longtime friend of The Border House, has posted a ChipIn fundraiser to afford the costly process of laser hair removal.
You probably know that I’m a trans woman. You might also know that over the past year, I’ve started taking anti-androgens and estrogen, which have helped me to feel more comfortable in my body than ever. But hormone replacement therapy isn’t perfect — for one thing, it doesn’t much affect facial hair.
Which is unfortunate, because my facial hair has caused me a lot of emotional and psychological pain. Sure, I can shave, but my hair is so dark that the stubble is obvious only a few hours later. I can try and wear foundation to cover it up, but even that isn’t perfect. And quite aside from the emotional and psychological problems, facial hair is a safety issue. The sooner Iget rid of it, the sooner I’ll have one less thing to worry about in public and one less source of gender dysphoria to deal with.
Merritt Kopas is a graduate student, a wonderful activist for LGBT rights, a teacher, and creator of many indie games including Lim (which Zoya covered here recently). This ChipIn was only posted today and is already 42% of the way through its $500 goal as of this writing.
The process of laser hair removal isn’t cheap, and sometimes can require many additional treatments and checkups after the initial costs. It is also a very visible part of the body that can seriously affect people’s perception and one’s comfort in their own skin while in public. Indie game developer Anna Anthropy had the following to say on Twitter:
people ask me about “the surgery” but it’s my facial hair that actually affects whether or not i can leave the house on any given morning.
— mean queen machine (@auntiepixelante) October 30, 2012