TRANS man Jeremy Wiggins is helping to redefine what it means to be a man in a short documentary he took part in for the Movember Foundation.
This year he will take part in Movember, the month-long fundraising event where men around the world shave their beards and grow moustaches during November to raise awareness around men’s health.
Wiggins said he became involved with the project after the team first reached out to him.
“I received a phone call out of the blue from the guys who were making the film,” he told the Star Observer.
“They thought it would be a great opportunity to explore what men’s health is like these days.
“So they shot it with me, talking about my experiences and especially my relationship with masculinity and facial hair.”
In the video, he talks about the negative clichés that surround ideas of what it means to be a man.
“I’ve always known in myself that I’ve felt like I was a boy, or man, but when I decided to transition I was really scared about how the world would respond,” he said.
Wiggins works at the Victorian AIDS Council, where many of his co-workers will also be participating with him in a team in support of Movember.
Since 2013, over $685 million has been raised for the Movember Foundation which has been used to fund programs focusing on prostate and testicular cancer.
Wiggins said he believes the question of what it means to be a man is deeply-rooted in prejudice.
“That question in the past has always been attached to hypermasculinity, and has been wrapped up in heterosexism,” he told the Star Observer.
“The underlying roots of that question are quite homophobic and transphobic… through it I feel I have to justify my authenticity as a man to receive external validation.
“But I think that question isn’t as relevant as it was in the past. Now it means being a good person who is aware of his behaviours, and the impact he has on others, as well as being authentic.”
Movember runs from the start until the end of November.
To donate to Jeremy and the Victorian AIDS Council’s team, visit: au.movember.com/team/1948821
Watch the short documentary: