As a transgender 11-year-old, she struggled to search out comfy, well-fitting bikini bottoms.
So, her dad made them.
The bikini bottoms incorporate compression spandex and mesh to supply a compact match, in order that transgender women can really feel comfy doing the identical actions as their cisgender buddies.
“The response has been superb,” Ruby stated. “I’m so completely satisfied to see all the children that may get again into having fun with the actions they love, like swimming, dance and gymnastics.”
A childhood transition
At 3 years previous, Ruby liked her mom’s excessive heels and the drama of Disney princesses — pursuits her dad, Jamie Alexander, known as “gender-creative.”
“She would take a mattress sheet and wrap it round her hair, and go up the steps and throw the sheet down the steps,” Alexander stated. “That is when ‘Tangled’ got here out. She was at all times the princess.”
Ruby’s dad and mom had joined a bunch established by the Toronto public faculty system for fogeys of gender-creative children.
When Ruby was 8, Alexander stated, a number of the children within the group had begun to transition. Alexander informed Ruby that she might too, if she wished to.
Ruby informed CNN she was enthusiastic about her dad’s provide — and impatient.
“Day-after-day for some time, I’d simply be like, ‘I need to be a woman, I need to be a woman,'” she stated.
Quickly after, Ruby come out to her complete faculty.
Some college students, she stated, stared at her or requested questions on her anatomy. However many applauded and cheered.
“That saying the place there is a weight and it goes off your shoulder … it felt like that,” she stated.
Restricted bikini choices for trans women
Ruby was 11 when she informed her dad she wished to put on a bikini like her buddies, Alexander stated.
Her dad and mom purchased her one, and Ruby was pleased with it. However Alexander stated they nervous it could draw undesirable consideration due to its sick match.
When the household determined to make a journey overseas, they felt nervous about Ruby’s security. They did not know if she’d be accepted there.
After coming back from the journey, Alexander started working. There have been a couple of swimwear manufacturers for trans children, however none that Ruby felt comfy in.
“I purchased every part I might,” he stated. “I even obtained sure issues sewed…For Ruby, she did not prefer it. It did not really feel like a bikini.”
With a background in tech entrepreneurship, Alexander created a bikini that he stated each appeared and felt like one. Whereas different bikinis Ruby tried felt cumbersome, he stated, the RUBIES bikini bottoms are made with a modern and trendy slot in thoughts.
A worldwide group
“Having a trans child spans geographies,” Alexander stated. “Relying on the place they’re, they may not have the helps that now we have.”
Intent on reaching individuals across the globe, Alexander has just lately translated the RUBIES web site into 5 different languages: German, Spanish, French, Portuguese and Chinese language.
Alexander stated most individuals outdoors of Canada discover RUBIES by way of Fb assist teams or by looking for “trans women clothes” on the Web.
He has shipped to nations together with Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Spain and Italy so far.
It isn’t unusual, he stated, to listen to from individuals who appear “distressed” about their or their kids’s gender id. When this occurs, he asks in the event that they need to have a Zoom name.
“I am at all times completely satisfied to try this,” he stated. “To speak with individuals and share my data.”
Ruby, now 13, stated she retains busy writing postcards to those that order a bikini, additionally weighing in on designs, cloth and colours for merchandise.
Alexander stated the method has been thrilling for her, as alternatives come up and merchandise — like a one-piece swimsuit and underwear — are being developed.
“My future hope is for trans children to not be judged,” Ruby stated. “I would like all women, and all trans children, to simply really feel comfy about their physique.”