Read what fuels one intersex advocate

Sean Saifa Wall, an intersex activist and leader at Advocates for Informed Choice, wrote a reflection in the news and commentary site, Quartz, reflecting on the relationship between his intersex advocacy and his personal life. Saifa was also recently featured on Nightline, confronting the doctor who performed unnecessary surgery on his body as a child to conform his bodies to society's expectations.

Saifa wrote about the fact that his advocacy doesn't stop at the end of the day, since it is his body that he is advocating for.

Intersex activism is not easy because our bodies are sites of resistance. We can’t go home and disconnect from this issue after arguing about it; we live and breathe the intricacies of intersexuality every day. But our activism continues, fueled by anger and love; anger at what was done to us without our informed consent, and love for what remains of our bodies and for a future generation of young people, to be protected from such violations.

Saifa also reminded people that his advocacy is ongoing, and that he sees a movement building.

As an intersex activist, I am building the capacity of people to understand intersex issues and press for change. Those of us who are willing to share our experiences of medical trauma are sharing an intimate conversation with the world, telling you that despite the surgeon’s attempted physical erasure of our complexity, we are still here.


Deep listening can transform and heal. It can lead to action. And it makes me wonder how more people and institutions would change for the better, if only those who hold power and cause trauma listened better? And how would our world be different, if they made amends or provided restitution for past wrongs?

Read the full commentary at Quartz.