Jewish Journal

Transgender Shabbat

by Kalil Cohen

June 11, 2010 | 3:24 pm

posted by Kalil Cohen

The second transgender Shabbat dinner organized by Jewish Queer International will take place Friday June 11, 2010.  This potluck Shabbat dinner is specifically geared towards creating transgender/Jewish safe space. You don’t have to be Trans. You don’t have to be Jewish. You just have to want to be in a safe space that celebrates both.

As a member of JQ International’s new Transgender Inclusion Committee, I am delighted to be fostering a transgender Jewish community in Los Angeles.  When I was first struggling to accept myself as a transgender person and began contemplating transitioning socially and medically, I was really worried that I would lose my communities; I was worried that I would lose my college friends, my lesbian friends, and also my Jewish community.

After going through the terrifying process of coming out to everyone in my life, this was not even close to the truth.  I was able to maintain close connections with all the important people in my life, including my Jewish family and friends. With events like this Shabbat dinner, I aim to create safe spaces where other questioning Jews can affirm their gender or sexual identity without the risk of losing their Jewish community in the process.

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