Abstract

Transgender peer-to-peer support groups can provide an invaluable space for healing by fostering collective knowledge, resource sharing, and supportive self-determination. Historically, transgender people have facilitated these grassroots mental health and gender transition supports within their communities, picking up the slack where providers and healthcare systems have either fallen short, or worse, have actively sought to bar access. Peer models emerge from these community-based movements but have also started to become more formally integrated into some state-funded models of healthcare. The following article investigates the impacts of clinical work conducted in institutionally funded, peer-to-peer transgender mental health support groups through a narrative-driven conversation between the authors: a transgender service provider and a transgender service user. Drawing on our shared experience, we discuss the benefits and shortcomings of this innovative, yet delegitimized form of healthcare provision for transgender people.

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