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Advice on getting a binder with transphobic family?

Discussion in 'Gender Identity and Expression' started by croftrs147, Sep 9, 2019.

  1. croftrs147

    Regular Member

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    Here's my dilemma: I want to get a binder, but my family's homophobic, transphobic, the whole shebang. I've heard some companies have discreet packaging, but the problem is my parents will want to know what I ordered when a box addressed to me arrives. Also the problem with buying online is my parents can see my bank account so they'll know if I order something and they'll ask. I was thinking maybe I could talk to one of my friends (who's genderfluid and their parents are supportive) and see if maybe I could ship it to their house or something and as for money maybe they could technically order it and I give them the money (if it's physical cash my parents can't exactly see where it's going). But even if that would work and if I got a binder, it would be really hard to hide it from my parents/family. My sister and I basically share a room (it's an unfinished basement with a curtain dividing our side if you're wondering what I mean by basically) so I'd have to be careful there because she's even more homophobic/transphobic than my parents. The other thing is with laundry my parents would see it. I don't really know what to do. It doesn't help that I don't have much room for spending right now because I'm trying to save it for a school trip thingy either. Does anyone see a way I could make this work? Or will I have to wait until I move out or something?
     
  2. Hawk

    Community Facilitator Admin Team Full Member

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    If you can get your friend to order it for you, I'd ask them. Otherwise, you can always get pre-paid visa/mastercard giftcards and have it shipped to your friends house if their parents will allow you to do it.

    As for hiding it from family, can you change into it in your bathroom, and store it in a drawer under other clothes?
    You can always wash it yourself in the bathtub or sink with a bit of detergent and let it hang dry in your room if you have a discreet spot for it.

    You know your situation best, and if now's the right time to get a binder.

    Other alternative binding methods you can use are the sportsbra method. You can either get a "spandex-y" one (without a built-in cup; I find UnderArmour to be good for this) and use that. Or if one doesn't do it, you can always wear one backwards, and one properly. There's some different methods here, with more detailed instructions.
     
  3. Cinnamon Bunny

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    Binders are very thinned material so they fold up small and are easy to hide, even if it's an XXL and full torso. If you hide it with clothes it won't stick out as suspicious. You could even hang it under a t-shirt on a hanger. They look like an under shirt or sporty shirt so not sure if it would raise any eyebrows if anyone saw it. You could even say it's for P.E. or a sport for added support or sweat absorbtion. You could say it's a body contour shape wear, those are a lady thing. Most cis people have no idea what a binder looks like. I hide mine in my closet, folded up on a small shelf behind my hanging clothes with other folded up clothes. In the extremely rare chance anyone snooped it's easy to miss or explained away.

    As it's already been said, giftcards and prepaid credit cards. There's also amazon lockers or shipping to a p.o. box. Shipping to your friend may be the easiest.

    Your situation sounds tough. A way I could see you using a binder is to slip it into a backpack/tote and change elsewhere.

    Hand washing clothes in the sink is very doable (I do this for many hand wash only things). There's also laundry mat places where you pay in quaters. If you can't manage it at home or a laundry place, you could visit a friend's house or find a single room bathroom stall. If I was in a major pinch, my local park has a bathroom and I'd go wash things there. Then I'd just lay it on the grass in the sun till it dried.
     
    #3 Cinnamon Bunny, Sep 10, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
  4. Kodo

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    If I were you I would try to get it shipped to my friend’s house. I had a similar problem when ordering my first binder, my family is trans/homophobic as well but I didn’t have any friends to send it to at the time so I sent it to my house. By some stroke of luck I was able to get to the mailbox before them to retrieve it.

    My parents never knew I had a binder until after I told them years later. They suspected I was binding, and at one point my mother seized my back support wrap because she thought I was using that. But the binder itself comes in discreet packaging, and looks like some sort of sports bra or contouring shirt. You could easily pass it off as one of those if you were asked directly. I also had to share a room growing up so I always just changed in the bathroom and kept my binder hidden in under some clothes in my dresser.

    It’s unlikely people will catch on if you start binding, especially if you usually wear layers (this is largely how I kept it a secret from my parents). The layering makes it less obvious to others that you’re binding while still alleviating the dysphoria for you.
     
  5. Phoenix92

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    Ask for amazon gift cards for Christmas/birthday.
    Have the binder shipped to a friends house.
    Try to layer it under other clothes as best you can.(if you’re smaller chested, this shouldn’t be too difficult)
    I know some binders have a more ‘feminine” look(I.E. look more like sports bras), if you can get one like that it could be a safer option, though I’m not sure what it’d do for dysphoria...
     
  6. masonjar

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    maybe look into any lgbtq alliance centers near you and seeing if the have resources on binders. a center near me is helping me get a binder for free so there are always ways good luck!