Help Riley Afford Top Surgery

$2,370 of $7,300 goal
Given by 67 generous donors in around 3 months

Help a young transmasc kiwi afford top surgery to allow him to present as the person he truly is


Hi! My name is Riley (pronouns he/him) and I'm a transmasc (female to male) individual living in New Zealand. I've identified as queer from the age of 14, and since then I have come out to everyone except for certain members of my extended family. A few weeks ago on my 18th birthday I took the first legal step in my transition and I officially changed my name to Riley, making it one of my best birthdays ever.

I had scheduled a consultation appointment with a top surgeon in Christchurch, but due to level 4 lockdown this got moved to an over the phone consultation. In this consultation I found out the type of surgery I am eligible for, the cost ($16,400-$16,950), and when I would be able to get surgery, which is currently looking like November-December depending on when I can get a gender dysphoria diagnosis to go ahead with surgery.

If I was going ahead with surgery through the public system, I would have to be 1 year on testosterone before I could even be put on the public waiting list for surgery (currently I'm looking at about a 2-3 month wait at least until I'm able to start testosterone), and then there is about another years wait before I would be able to get surgery. This all means that I would be about 20-21 before I could get top surgery, which is not an option for me.

I've been saving up for top surgery since I was 14-15 (from my first job), and almost everything I've ever earned has gone towards my fund for this surgery. While most kids my age are saving up for a car or for moving out, I haven't even been able to think about those things because all my money has gone towards this surgery. All those years of saving have started to pay off, and I have enough to pay for over half of the cost of my surgery, so I am only asking for financial help for a portion of the cost.

I have struggled with gender dysphoria since before I knew about the existence of trans people and before I had the terminology to describe how I was feeling, and that coupled with mental health struggles has taken away most of my teenage years. I will always be mourning the childhood I should have had, but I don't have to be mourning my young adulthood as well. This is why its so so important for me to get top surgery as soon as possible, before I start things like university and meeting new people who haven't known me since pre transitioning.

Some things I'm really looking forward to after getting top surgery is my daily routine for leaving the house to not have to include squashing myself into a binder I struggle to breathe in, and being able to feel the fabric of my shirt against my bare flat chest. I cant wait for the day that I can take off my shirt to go swimming and being able to feel the cool water rush against my skin.

If we manage to go over the fundraising goal then any extra money will go towards any unexpected surgery related costs that may crop up, or to other peoples top surgery fundraisers on here. Give A Little also takes 5% of the money that I raise on here for their running costs, so I have factored this into my fundraising goal.

I understand that not everyone may be in a position to donate much, or anything at all, but I promise you that every donation or share is so so helpful and appreciated and I am incredibly grateful for any and all contributions.

Finally, I've included a link to a poem by trans writer and artist Samuel Luke that I think about a lot and I think it captures the experience and longing of being a trans person who binds and wants to get surgery.

Use of funds

Surgical Fee & Post-Operative Dressings: $7,375

Anaesthetist: $2,025- $2,575

Hospital Costs: $7,000

Total: $16,400-$16,950

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Latest donations

Ray on 19 Oct 2021
I can't offer a lot right now but I still want to support you. When lockdown is over and I can get back to work I will be able to give more
Samara on 16 Oct 2021
Sean on 11 Oct 2021
Rosie on 05 Oct 2021
polly on 26 Sep 2021

Who's involved?

Riley Armstrong's avatar
Created by, and paying to a verified bank account of, Riley Armstrong
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This page was created on 24 Aug 2021 and closes on 20 Aug 2022.