Victoria and Skye are both transgender women who are active in the arts and entertainment communities in Darlinghurst. Here they talk about their care for each other, and how they support each other to have good mental health.
Victoria and Skye have a friendship built on listening and trusting each other. They live in the same building and are always looking out, encouraging, and supporting each other. “Vicki’s a great listener. And I talk a lot,” laughs Skye. “Sometimes it's good to get advice, but sometimes you know the right answer. So you just need to vent, and sometimes you just need someone to listen to you, and then you'll feel better. So I feel like we're great at that.”
The pair know what each need to relax, and encourage each other to practice self-care when they need to. “I think that we support each other by doing things that the other person enjoys, or that we both enjoy,” says Victoria.
“One day I was having the worst day, I just felt terrible,” Skye says. “And she made me come and go to Bondi beach with her, and I really didn't want to go. I just wanted to be at home all day. I didn't want to get out of the house. But I did it for her. I felt so much better when we walked along the beach three or four times and just talked. It was so beautiful and so relaxing, and it just made me feel so much better. And I'm so happy that I have a friend like Victoria. Sometimes your friends can help you, you just have to trust them and do your part as well.”
Skye knows to trust that Victoria has her best interests at heart. “As much as I wanted to mope around in the house, she wanted me to go to the beach, and so I did it. And I'm so grateful that she did, because it just changed my mood. I felt brand new again and it got me out my headspace. We understand each other.”
Skye and Victoria put things into perspective when the other is feeling low and need reminding of their self-worth. “Sometimes when you are in a bad state of mind, you can think you're a horrible person. You start thinking all these negative things about yourself,” Skye says. “It’s great to have someone to put your life into perspective, and remind you of all your good qualities.”
During COVID-19, when Victoria lost a lot of her work, Skye encouraged her to get creative in new ways. “I think it's great to bring out the passion again in your friends. Find something that they're interested in and then work on a project with them. And I knew that with Victoria that was filming and videography… since the DJ work dried up, this was the perfect time for her to get back into another passion of hers that she neglected, and now she's doing great with that.”
“I love it, Victoria responds. “It's so much fun. And I've helped Skye as well. She loves to dress up and be in front of the camera, so she's been my muse. I've been filming, I've been the director and she's doing all of the fun stuff in front of the camera.
Through their performing and videos, Victoria and Skye hope to provide positive representation of trans women. “Growing up, I would’ve loved to see a transgender woman in a positive way, living her life and being happy,” Skye says. “It would have been inspiring to me. It's important to show the negative things so that society can move forward, and we can be accepted more to fight that battle, but it is also important to have a positive representation in the media.”
“We don't know who's watching these videos, it could be a child out there that is struggling with their identity, and maybe being a positive voice will make their decision easier to come to terms with.”
“I think it's also very important to be visible,” continues Victoria. “We don't hide the fact that we're transgender. I didn't transition earlier in my life because I didn't know anyone, and I just thought that it would have been a hard road, because I would have been really alone.”
By being visible, Victoria and Skye hope to make that road easier for young transgender people. Together the pair support each other to be the best role models for their community that they can be.
If you need more information about supporting friends or loved ones, find out more here: acon.org.au/withyou
ACON provides confidential counselling to people in our communities seeking support in relation to their mental health and wellbeing. Contact ACON on (02) 9206 2000 or 1800 063 060 or visit the ACON Mental Health page.