The high cost of being transgender


Story highlights

It can cost more than $100,000 for a transgender person to transition

Some who can't afford a medical transition fear negative reactions and violence from others

CNN —  

Nicholas Ballou binds his chest each day before leaving his home. It’s so tight he often finds it hard to breathe and has gotten lightheaded. Throughout the day, he might touch his chest or adjust the wrap – a nervous habit. Nothing can be out of place.

Ballou, a transgender male, cannot afford top surgery, which would get rid of his breasts and give him a more male-looking chest. At 23, he has wanted to have this surgery for 10 years, but it’s expensive and it’s unlikely he’ll be able to cover the costs anytime soon.