Couple Abandon Baby Because She Received A Blood Transfusion From A Transgender Woman

In a note, the parents said they were worried the infant would become “one of them.”

An infant in India was abandoned by its parents because she received a transfusion from a transgender woman.

The couple initially wanted to thank the person who saved their anemic daughter's life, but when they discovered it was a trans person, they left their child on her doorstep with a note saying she was no longer part of their family. They were worried, they explained, that the baby would become "one of them."


Indian transgenders look at a performance during a 'Hijra Habba' event with the theme 'All citizens equal - Inclusion', at a shopping mall in New Delhi on September 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / MONEY SHARMA (Photo credit should read MONEY SHARMA/AFP/Getty Images)

Transgender woman, known as hijras, have been a part of Indian culture for centuries but often face discrimination and violence. While the government has worked to improve conditions—passing a trans rights bill in 2015—cultural prejudices persist.

The donor, Rekha (not her real name), had herself had been disowned. Determined to break the cycle, she adopted the baby and worked to give her a better life. The child, now six, is in school and appears to be thriving.

“I myself have gone through the pain of being rejected by one’s own family," Rekha told The Stories of Change. "I think I am connected to her by this bond."

Sonu Mehta/Hindustan Times via Getty Images

NEW DELHI, INDIA - APRIL 15: Transgender rights activist, from Transgender & Transsexual Community, hold play cards during the one year celebration of the Supreme Court judgement recognising the transgenders as 'third gender at Jantar Mantar on April 15, 2015 in New Delhi, India. A number of activists from the community celebrated the occasion by pledging to donate their eyes. (Photo by Sonu Mehta/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

As in other parts of the world, stigma attached to blood donation by LGBT people continues to harm innocents: While 87% of HIV infections in India are among heterosexuals, LGBT people are considered a "high-risk group" and are banned from giving blood. (In comparison, the U.S. has relaxed its prohibition to one year of abstinence, while the UK recently switched to a three-month waiting period.)

The Bangalore-based organization Khoon aims to address the blood shortage in India by encouraging donation, raising awareness, and combatting misinformation and discrimination.

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