My plan at this stage is to get a radial forearm phalloplasty done in the UK under the NHS.

Why am I doing this in the UK under the NHS, you ask?

Australia has sub-standard healthcare when it comes to reconstructive bottom surgery for transgender folks. Many have to fly overseas to Thailand, Serbia, US or UK to get their surgery done as no qualifiable surgeon performs it in Australia.

I initially thought to go to Dr. Crane in Florida but I would be unable to have it covered by health insurance over there as I am not an American citizen, nor am I employed there, to be able to use employment benefits. I would have to pay 40,000 – 70,000 grand out of pocket.

However, after doing much research, I found that I can obtain an Ancestry Visa to the UK, spend the entire length of the visa there (which is five years), and can most certainly access the government funded NHS while I am staying there.

It is an option that gives me hope for the future, also it would also allow me a few years to assert my independence in a new country, living in a place that is in a different climate to Australia. Bring on the rainy weather! So sick of Australia’s relentless heat.

I wish one day, for all Australians, that the Australian health care follows in the UK’s system footsteps when it comes to transgender health care.

Yes, while the NHS has long waiting lists, the surgeries are covered 100%. This is a HUGE positive as I know I would struggle to save up for phalloplasty, even with a well-paying job over several years. I fear that if I went that route, with how intense my dysphoria already is, I don’t think I could survive it.