This transgender creative needs your help to raise money for gender surgery

In true millennial form, this young creative is using social media to make her dreams come true.

Lola Parkinson is the creative director of emerging label, Siaban, and is also a stylist and blogger in her spare time. She also happens to be a transgender woman, and is wanting to take the next step to start finalising her transition by undergoing Facial Feminisation Surgery. 

Parkinson has taken to Go Fund Me to start a fundraising campaign, in order to assist her in reaching the amount needed to pay for the surgery.

We caught up with Lola and asked her a few hard questions.

Image credit: @thelolaxolivia on Instagram

Image credit: @thelolaxolivia on Instagram

A-Z: Hi Lola! Wow, we are so proud of you for being so open with the online community about your hopes to finalise your transition, that must have been really hard.
Lola: Thank you, yeah it has been something I have wanted to do for ages, I have always just been too embarrassed and scared.

A-Z: How long has this been something you’d been wanting to do?
Lola: Well I have wanted FFS (Facial Feminisation Surgery) as soon as I realised that it was even an option, which was probably around 17.

A-Z: Can you tell us a little bit about what ‘Gender Affirmation Surgery’ is?
Lola: It is a series of different surgeries some trans folk get to help them feel more comfortable and confident within their appearance. These surgeries help to refine and enhance their features to be more “feminine” and to allow more trans people to be able to “pass” to a certain point where it can help prevent harassment, physical abuse and honestly even death (which is a real possibility for us). 

A-Z: Is there any Medicare or government help with surgeries like this?
Lola: No I don’t think there are. I think Medicare should cover transgender surgeries because they aren’t cosmetic, they can help save someone’s life. The gender dysphoria so many trans people endure is horrific, some even attempting to perform the surgeries themselves or ending their own lives.

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A-Z: Can you tell us a little bit more about your journey as a woman and the battles and issues you’ve had to overcome as a transgender woman?
Lola: Oh boy, you're in for a long story. So I always knew I was a woman, but it was never “oh I’m a girl, stuck in a boys body” I was always a girl and this is my body. Growing up I was always playing with dolls, dressing up in my sisters clothes and makeup. As I got older and started puberty I was very confused and honestly, depressed. I hated the fact that I had hair growing on my legs; peach fuzz and anything remotely masculine frightened me so much that I would cry myself to sleep. While showering I would beg for God to fix it, and anytime I was undressed I remember it being the worst part of the day. Throughout my teens I was so frightened to wake up one day and look in the mirror and be my dad (sorry Dad).
When I was 14 I started to starve myself so that I could achieve a more feminine body and not gain any muscle. I got so skinny I went from a boys 16 in jeans to a girls 6, and because I was so skinny I used it as my excuse to be able to wear girls clothes.
As I got older it occurred to me what the word 'transgender' was and how it exactly described how I felt and who I was. I started researching more and more, while also battling the constant fear, hatred, loneliness and dysphoria I felt daily. Eventually when I was seventeen I told my mum, who by this point was already telling me that she knew. We found a psychologist that specialises in transgender people, and within the next six months I finally had the answers as to who I was, and that I could actually be the girl I always was. My Mum helped me get started with laser hair removal which was a god send. In March 2017 I started HRT (hormone replacement therapy) which was the most relieving and amazing thing that could happen and has helped me so much over the past year both mentally and physically. 

A-Z: How supportive have your loved ones been about your announcement to want to do surgery?
Lola: My family, friends and boyfriend have always been so understanding of everything that I've needed to do in my transition to be more complete - from coming out, to hormones and now surgery. I was very relieved when I got the support from my social media following. It was incredible to see how sweet, educated and caring people are towards trans issues.

A-Z: Tell us, who is Lola Parkinson?
Hmm I don’t know where to start. I grew up in Alice Springs, where I lived until I was 16. I currently live with my boyfriend Daniel, who is my best friend and first love, as corny as it sounds. I dream about living in Paris and waking up with a croissant and coffee, looking out of a Parisian apartment balcony, with my abundant collection of shoes scattering the floor. I’ve always wanted to travel and build a home when I’m an old woman for me, my cat and possibly Daniel. A home that would be filled with trinkets from every second hand shop and market from around the world.
I am currently working as a fashion stylist and I really love it. I’m also working on building a fashion empire with my good friend Billy Siaban, Notably named after the designer himself SIABAN, which will hopefully be launching soon. Check us out @siaban.label. And I’m currently waiting to sit the STAT test, where hopefully I can get into uni to study journalism and art.

A-Z: And lastly how do we help you?
Lola: You guys can help me by donating any money you can spare, a little is more than enough. Please share this post and my personal Go Fund Me post on my Instagram @lolaxolivia. And just by spreading the word and acceptance for beautiful trans folks like myself.

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You can make a donation to Lola's Go Fund Me campaign here:

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