Date of Award

Spring 4-17-2023

Document Type


First Advisor

David Barclay

Second Advisor

Kristen Harmon

Third Advisor

Miguel Angel Ramirez


The mental and physical health issues of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Transgender and Nonbinary (TNB) communities have been neglected for far too long. The risk of suicide and mental and physical health issues in Deaf and Hard of Hearing TNB communities is alarmingly high due to issues surrounding family life, school, healthcare, lack of accessibility, and anti-trans legislation. Research indicates that social support shown through positive representation, encouraging interactions, and accessible resources within one’s community can act as a buffer against the mental health issues that Deaf and Hard of Hearing TNB individuals face. However, many of these individuals do not have access to a supportive offline community. Some Deaf and Hard of Hearing TNB individuals find that their surroundings are unsupportive and do not affirm their identities. Individuals who do not have supportive offline communities turn to online communities for support. This project seeks to provide a supportive online community through journalistically interviewing five Deaf and Hard of Hearing TNB adults about their stories and experiences navigating their identities around the world. Through these interviews, stories have been created about these individuals and shared for others to read on Gallaudet University’s website under the Division of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion’s page. The stories based on these interviews will spread positive representations of individuals within the Deaf and Hard of Hearing TNB community for others to read. In addition to sharing these stories, the interviews have also provided a deeper understanding of what root causes for mental and physical health issues and identity development may be in the Deaf and Hard of Hearing TNB community.



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