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TRANSlation is an educational podcast that will help you decipher the unique language of the transgender and gender-variant world. From the basic definition of transgender to the more complicated aspect of gender variance, TRANSlation provides a source of information as well as real-world experience. If you are questioning your gender-identity, or a family or friend is trans, this podcast will guide you through the fundamentals and finer points of understanding what it means to be trans. And, if you're lucky, it might be be entertaining. Thank you for supporting independent artists.

Check out Paved With Good Intentions as well:

You can email me your stories, questions or comments:
You can find the Twitter feed: @TRANSlationPodC
You can also follow me on Twitter: @dani_kaessner

You can also visit my website! So much for you to do!

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    Ep 30: Does Gender Dysphoria Go Away?

    A friend of mine posted an interesting question recently: does gender dysphoria go away after surgery? Of course I gave my answer, but it had me thinking about the larger implications. Gender dysphoria is a condition, but is it permanent?

    In answering this question, we first need a clear definition of gender dysphoria. From there, we can address what factors could help mitigate or even eliminate it. But at the end of the day, it is a personal question that will yield many unique answers.

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    Ep 29: The Transgender Community

    One of the words you'll hear most often on this podcast is the discussion of the trans community. But what does that mean? What am I talking about when I refer to the community? It's going to vary from person to person, but there are some aspects of a community that might make it easier to identify.

    In this episode, I am also making a personal statement about being trans. Thanks to Lady Gaga's performance at the Super Bowl, I can finally put those feelings into a convenient hashtag: #transfrombirth

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    Ep 28: Internalized Transphobia / Awakening

    Sometimes we can be our own worst enemies. No matter how hard we work in life to avoid projecting on others, sometimes we struggle to greatly with our own demons. That is what internalized transphobia is, when a trans individual harbors resentment toward the larger trans community.

    In this episode, we also look at what it means to have an awakening. For trans people, this is a necessity, a moment of clarity when the excuses just run out. But it isn't for trans individuals alone. Self actualization is a part of life, but also one of the most difficult to achieve.

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    Ep 27: The Aftermath (How Did We Get Here/Where Do We Go?)

    Suffice it to say, November 8, 2016 was a shocking day. But more than shock came the immediate uncertainty of the future. What will happen to the civil rights stressed during the 8 years of President Barack Obama?

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    Ep 26: The Asterisk / Passing Privilege

    Do you remember my old logo? It seemed innocuous enough, but I made a significant change: I removed the asterisk. That little glyph is a source of controversy since it first appeared in the last few years. Here, I explain why it's important to note, as well as why I chose to remove it.

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    Ep 24: Politicizing Trans - It's My Party

    Trans issues are becoming more important in the modern political world. While civil rights organizations and activists fight to ensure trans individuals are protected equally under the law, politicians across the United States are pushing for laws that will restrict those very freedoms.

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    Ep 23: Bigender

    The spectrum of gender identity is vast. Some are more easily defined than others. In this episode of Trans*lation, we look at one specific identification group: bigender.

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    Ep 21: Trans In The Media pt. 2 (with special guest River)

    In our last episode, we looked at trans representation in the media, specifically looking at movies and television. But the real world experience is even more vast and complicated. I am joined by my special guest River as we talk about trans visibility in the news. Specifically, the Denver Post has run a series of articles focusing on trans issues and visibility. We discuss the importance of that and impact it is having in Colorado, as well as extrapolate how that influences trans visibility on a larger scale.

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    Ep 20: Trans In The Media pt. 1 / HRT Year One

    Trans visibility is growing. More and more, news stories pop up that focus on real life trans individuals and their unique situations. But visibility is also growing in pop culture, with more realistic depictions of trans characters on television and in movies. In the first half of the episode, we look at how visibility is growing in the media and some of the effects of that. There is one debate that comes up about trans actors, or more appropriately trans character roles given to cisgender actors.

    In the second half of the episode, I respond to a fan question about my experience in the first year of HRT. While my experience is unique to my situation, some of it may resonate with the experiences of others. Conversely, it does not cover the full spectrum of experiences trans individuals can encounter during their first year of HRT.

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    Ep 19: Gender Therapy

    Transition isn't easy. It's really quite a challenge. But one way for trans* individuals to mitigate that challenge is through gender therapy. Gender therapy is helpful resource for anyone questioning their gender identity, as well as their family and friends. In this episode, we look at what gender therapy is and why is can be extremely valuable.

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    Ep 18: Transgender Day Of Remembrance 2015

    November 20 is a difficult day for trans* and gender variant people around the world. Every year, November 20 is designated as the Transgender Day of Remembrance, they day when we commemorate those individuals who have been murdered in the past year for being transgender or gender variant. This episode contains a brief explanation of TDOR, as well as my own opinion on why this is such a critical and important day.

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    Ep 17: For Better And Worse (Editorial)

    So much is happening in this world of ours. But with all of the current events, one of the most pressing questions is simple: is it getting better or worse for trans individuals? In this episode, I look at the current state of the world and seek to answer this question as best I can. While I am more inclined to feed the activist in me, I also see the good that is happening by trans individuals and our allies. Progress doesn't come easily, as the current events dictate. But like any civil rights fight, there will be progress and opposition in constant flux.

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    Ep 15: The Chasm: Religion And Gender Equality

    There are a number of controversial topics when discussion transgender issues. Religion is one of the touchiest subjects. There are plenty of reasons to see the rift between the LGBT community and religious institutions, and the gap grows every day. How can people who believe in love and forgiveness be so hostile to another group of people? While not all religious people are anti-LGBT, there is a vocal presence, as well as systemic sources for the animosity. But the most curious phenomenon is how many LGBT individuals will still choose to remain faithful, even in the face of discrimination.

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    Ep 14: Gender Identity And Sexual Orientation

    One of the more common questions people have for transgender individuals is whether being transgender means they are gay. Almost every trans* person has been asked this before. But there is a difference between the two concepts: one deals with one's gender identity, while the other deals with sexual attraction. While there are similarities, and the civil rights fight is cut from the same cloth, it is important to know the distinction between the two.

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    Ep 13: Not ______ Enough: Stereotypes And Gender Policing

    Stereotypes are everywhere. Especially in the modern age of the internet, stereotypes are widely pervasive. Whether a stereotype is based on a positive or a negative quality, it is dangerous. That is particularly true when it comes to the trans community. As trans individuals struggle to align themselves with traditional gender expressions, they are finding resistance, both from cisgender and other transgender individuals for not being stereotypical. This is particularly difficult for non-binary individuals.

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    Ep 12: Glossary Of Trans*

    I have touched on a number of topics on Translation so far. As it turns out, that could be an information overload. Even more, I might be using terms that are not commonly known. In my welcome back episode, I look at a number of terms related to transgender issues. It's a glossary of trans, if you will. And you should. As usual, if there is anything I don't cover, don't forget to email me your questions at

    We also take a quick look at some of the trans* related stories in the news recently, both the negative, proving the fight for civil rights is far from over, as well as the positive gains we are making.

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    Ep 11: The "T" Word - Transphobia Revealed

    Transition is the ultimate goal for many trans individuals. It is their path toward a better life of self-fulfillment. But transition comes with a risk. Transphobia, which is term used to describe intentional discrimination and violence against trans people, is the steepest risk we know. It can come in many forms, from simple misgendering to murder. As society and the law continue to adapt to the ever growing visibility of trans* people, it is becoming all the more necessary to address transphobia and the many viscious results that come of it.

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    Ep 9: Two-Spirit

    Western culture keeps a steady focus on the gender binary. There is man and woman, with little room for variation in between. For trans people, this is particularly challenging. How do we break from the restrictions of the gender binary? We can start by looking at other cultures and how they treat gender variance. This episode of Translation looks at one such cultural example: two-spirit, a Native American concept of third gender. Two-spirit is not equivalent of transgender, but rather a spiritual role that accesses the depths of both the male and female experience.

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    Ep 8: Warrior Trans* (Editorial)

    Last week, the Pentagon announced the possibility of lifting the ban on openly trans service members in the near future. This has been a long time coming, especially with the end of DADT in 2011. There are already as many as 15,000 trans service members throughout the US military. Because of a medical regulation, they are not allowed to serve openly as their true selves. That doesn't mean some soldiers aren't pushing the issue forward toward progress. Today's episode looks at lifting the ban and what needs to be done in order for it to work.

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    Ep 7: The Voice

    Everyone has a voice, and our voice is like a trademark. For transgender people, the voice is especially important. It could be the difference between passing and revealing to the world that they are trans. In today's episode, we talk about the voice, from its fascinating biology to how it affects the daily life of a transgender individual. Altering the physical helps a trans person see their true self in the mirror. But practicing their voice, that is how they can hear the sound of their heart.

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    Ep 6: HRT

    Gender dysphoria is a medical condition. More importantly, it is one where the body and mind are separate. But there is a way that many transgender individuals have been able to bridge that gap between their gender identity and their physical body: HRT. Hormone replacement therapy. It is as ingrained in the trans world as anything. While not everyone chooses this route, it is certainly an important and monumental step for a trans individual. This episode looks at what HRT is and how it affects transgender people, both FtM and MtF.

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    Ep 5: We Are Not The Scapegoats (Editorial)

    Independence Day is upon us! And while we are celebrating with friends, barbecues and fireworks, we should also be reminded of why we honor this holiday. American independence was hard fought, and the values they upheld we captured in written spirit through the Declaration of Independence. But do we still uphold those values, particularly when it comes to marginalized groups? In this episode of Translation, we look at how transgender people are still fighting a revolutionary war of sorts, particularly when we become easy targets. When a tragedy occurs that has nothing to do with trans people, why are we brought into the conversation at all?

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    Ep 4: Waiting For The Turning Point (part 2)

    There is no question that transgender people are becoming more visible today, especially with celebrities like Laverne Cox. But why is it important? In the first part of the episode, we looked at the circumstances that led to the rise in visibility and the issues that trans individuals face daily. In this episode of the Translation podcast, we look at why this visibility is important and the individuals who are leading the charge in the public eye.

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    Ep 3: Waiting For The Turning Point (part 1)

    When Caitlyn Jenner appeared on the cover of Vanity Fair, the conversation about transgender people exploded in the media. As abrupt as it seemed, that was merely another stepping stone in a growing trend of visibility over the past few years. But where did it come from? How close are we to the turning point on transgender issues? In this episode of the Trans*lation podcast, we seek an answer to that very question. Gender variance has been around for a long time, but only in the past half-century has western society began to bring the conversation to the table.

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    Ep 2: Coming Out

    There are events in a person's life that are monumental and meant to be inspiring. Coming out is one of those events, even though it isn't always received with joy or acceptance. Coming out is a part of being transgender. It is the inevitable step between imagining the dream and living as your true self. It is powerful, emotional and terrifying. In this episode of Translation, we look at what coming out means and the process involved when someone knows the time is right. Coming out won't be the same for everyone, but there are some basics that will hold true. Ultimately, the first person a trans person must come out to is themselves, and this episode will shed light on that endeavor.

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    Ep 1: What Is Transgender?

    Transgender people have been around for a long time, but only recently have they begun to find more public visibility. With that visibility, more trans individuals are finding the strength in themselves to come out. So, what is transgender? In the first episode of Translation, we take a broad look at the fundamentals of the transgender and gender-variant experience. Whether someone is questioning their own gender identity, or if they know someone who is transgender, this episode will give an introduction into the vast and unique world of trans* people.

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