Digital Transgender Archive

Interview with Ignacio Rivera

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Ignacio Rivera identifies as a transgender queer, two-spirit person who was assigned female at birth. They are an internationally known performance artist, activist, sex educator, writer, and blogger. They grew up in Brooklyn, New York, and their family is a mix of Black, Puerto Rican, and indigenous heritage. They were teased in school for speaking some Spanish. They have an older brother and sister. They came out as a lesbian at 19 when they shifted from being a high-femme lesbian to a masculine dyke. Their first girlfriend was a militant dyke who helped Rivera express different parts of themselves and taught them a lot about politics and sexual orientation. They started hormones 2 years ago, had a hysterectomy for medical reasons, and top surgery. After they began passing more when their chest was noticeable, they experienced looks and aggressiveness from people, particularly men. They have a good relationship with their family. At 18 they got pregnant and then had a daughter. They were involved with the New York City Gay and Lesbian Anti-Violence Project and started Poly Patao Productions, work involved in sexual liberation.

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