Young man redoes graduation photos after identifying himself as non-binary: ‘the person on the plate wouldn’t be me’ | Piauí

The 25-year-old psychology student Jamil Ribeiro began to identify himself as a non-binary trans in March 2021. After this process, Jamil decided to retake his graduation photos because, according to him, “I realized that whoever would appear on the sign would not be me”.

Non-binary gender people are those who do not perceive themselves as an exclusively gender. That is, their gender identity and gender expression are not limited to male and female.

Jamil told the G1 that in February 2020, as traditionally happens at the end of a graduation, he took the photos for the graduation plaque with the class. But just over a year later, it had a different look and name.

“I identified myself as non-binary in March 2021 and then the class wanted to decide the graduation, whether or not they were going to have it, whether they were going to cancel it, but the certainty is that we were going to make the plaque and the invitations and then I realized that the photo from the beginning of the year was going to appear on the sign, it wouldn’t be me. I was very sad because my social name would appear, but I would appear with makeup, with big hair and different from what I am today, with overalls rose… a real nightmare,” he said.

Jamil is a content producer on social media and, after assuming his gender identity, he started to talk more about his experience. According to him, after much struggle against transphobia, specific violence suffered by trans people, and demanding the change of his name in official documents and university documents, he could not finish the course with an image that did not represent him.

So Jamil understood that he should redo his graduation photos. His family and friends on the course helped him.

Young retakes graduation photos after identifying himself as non-binary; “I wouldn’t be the one to appear on the plaque” — Photo: Personal Archive/Jamil Ribeiro

“My parents helped me, they got in touch with the company that took the photos to pay for this test again. I explained my case to the company, they understood, they booked in the same place just with me and made the scenery again. They were very empathetic. A classmate, who is also LGBT, lent me the clothes as there was no time to make the men’s shirt. It fit right, it was perfect,” said the young man.

The photos that Jamil remade were the individual ones, the photos for the group’s plaque and the ones that will be on the graduation invitation.

Young retakes graduation photos after identifying himself as non-binary; “I wouldn’t be the one to appear on the plaque” — Photo: Personal Archive/Jamil Ribeiro

The photograph with the whole class could not be remade, and Jamil’s old image will be recorded. But the detail doesn’t bother the young man.

“The people in the room even asked what I was going to choose, whether it was a dress, overalls or a boy’s outfit. And I chose overalls, I had them made. Now that I’ve redone the photos, my correct social name is there and the individual photos too, but the photo of the group, which I’m right in the center, I’m still wearing pink overalls and makeup. I thought it was cool, because they’ll look for me there and they won’t find it,” he said, smiling.

Young retakes graduation photos after identifying himself as non-binary; “I wouldn’t be the one to appear on the plaque” — Photo: Personal Archive/Jamil Ribeiro

During the course, Jamil had to fight to have his name written correctly in the records of the State University of Piauí (Uespi), the institution where he studies psychology. He said that there were many comings and goings at the university to be able to change his data, even when his official documents had already been rectified.

“In 2020 they changed my name and put the right one, Jamil Ribeiro, but earlier this year [2021], when the semester started, my institutional email was with my old name. Then I locked the course, because I wasn’t going to participate in the classes, being treated by a name registered there that is no longer mine,” explained Jamil.

For Jamil, the delay and errors in his data happened because the law is not rigid for cases of transphobia. The rectification only came after threats to sue the institution.

Young retakes graduation photos after identifying himself as non-binary; “I wouldn’t be the one to appear on the plaque” — Photo: Personal Archive/Jamil Ribeiro

“I’m going to graduate in October. When I redid the photos, the course was locked up because I refused to go back to Uespi in the 10th period because they weren’t accepting my social name, I had been asking for months. They only granted my request. after I threatened to take the case to court,” he explained.

The unveiling of the plaque, the milestone of the graduation event, by Jamil’s psychology class took place on August 19, and he was finally able to see the photo on the plaque and his social name, Jamil Ribeiro, recording his trajectory through the university.

*Intern under the supervision of Andrê Nascimento

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