Cut through binary | Radio-Canada News

Knowledge of Nillin

Nillin Lore (they / them), a 35-year-old woman living in Saskatoon (Treaty 6), feels safer attending one of the city’s queer and transgender hair salons than walking the streets of the city. city.

“I once had a haircut … where when I sat on the chair I ended up having to attend a sermon where I was told about God and my soul and my relationships not only with my other queer partner, but also polyamorous and how to be non-monogamous is a sinner’s way of life.

“So here I am, vulnerable with a person with scissors on his head, for I had to sit there and be told I was contemptible and disgusting.”

“As soon as I walked into High Noon [Barber Shop in Saskatoon] … I was already very, very, very nervous because I was in that dress. … I must have walked a few blocks before, and I had a lot of people staring at me, a lot of people pointing fingers. … And I walked in and the environment completely changed almost immediately. It was literally very welcoming, assertive – no judgmental, no staring… And in the end, when I looked at myself in the mirror, it was all tidy. I felt really, really, really rock and beautiful.

Nillin Lore says most of their experiences in hairstyling businesses have not been overtly transphobic;  rather, there was “unspoken unease”.  (Evie Ruddy)

Nillin Lore says most of their experiences in hairstyling businesses have not been overtly transphobic; rather, there was “unspoken unease”. (Evie Ruddy)

“As soon as I get out of the building and go down the steps, that red truck goes by and I hear this guy come out the window and he shouts, ‘What is this? Is that a guy in a dress?

“And he and his boyfriend are just booing and screaming and laughing about it, and they swear at me my way.” And I walk a few more blocks… and then it happened again.

“So it was devastating, really, honestly.”

As someone who is often abused, Lore says that being able to “check” your hair and style your beard makes them feel more assertive.  Here they are pictured with their hairdresser at High Noon, Kia Powery.  (Evie Ruddy)

As someone who is often abused, Lore says that being able to “check” your hair and style your beard makes them feel more assertive. Here they are pictured with their hairdresser at High Noon, Kia Powery. (Evie Ruddy)

“Hair salons are always described as the boys’ club, the men’s chair – really awkward conversations, maybe about non-consensual exchanges or toxic masculinity, which I always find extremely uncomfortable to have to try to stay. sitting down. But there is none of that here [at High Noon], and it’s really, really wonderful.

“For other queer, trans, and non-binary people who seek safe spaces and feel uncomfortable going out in public, it’s really, really hard and I understand. But all of you who choose to step out into the world as you are, this is incredibly important, and I see you.

“Others see you. And if you need help getting to a location … find a friend to go to a barber with you. ”


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