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Transforward opened in 2019 with the intention of expanding high quality mental healthcare access to the trans community that centers whole body health and healing through trauma-informed support.

​Transforward's mission has evolved in centering healing by providing an intentional space for trans people across identities and expressions in finding agency, embodiment, acceptance and authenticity.

Gender variance within the embodiment of gender is a part of being human. The trans experience and gender is not an inherently distressing experience. Transforward's practice is grounded in reframing "dysphoria" as trauma to the body, coming from internalized shame over the lifetime in a largely transphobic society, versus "dysphoria" as a pathological, psychological source of distress. In short, there is nothing wrong with the trans body or experience, yet perhaps there is something wrong with society's inability to see trans people as people. 

Transforward hopes to uplift and honor the trans experience and body according to each individual's medical, social, and psycho-emotional needs, while advocating for the trans community on larger community levels.

 
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MEET THE FOUNDER

Stefan J. Simanovich, LCSW, EMDRIA Certified

Stefan opened Transforward because of the need for trauma-informed, integrative healthcare for trans and queer people particularly those from low income backgrounds. As a trans man from the rural south Stefan understands the importance to affordable, high quality healthcare that does not perpetuate harm.

Stefan moved to New York to pursue his masters degree in social work at Columbia University. He has since worked in a variety of settings, including the NYC Department of Education as a school social worker and in mental health clinics with a focus on advocacy and trauma-informed therapy with trans and queer people.

Throughout his career and work with his community, Stefan has discovered themes and developed frameworks to facilitate health and healing from traumatic backgrounds. His mission is to honor the trans experience as a gift and gender variance as a regular human experience across body types, denouncing the model of "dysphoria" and other transphobic mindsets that further dehumanizes trans people. 

Stefan currently is a clinical instructor of social work in the Yale Department of Psychiatry. He also collaborates with legal entities in advocating for and supporting trans people who may be institutionalized. In his therapeutic practice he uses EMDR therapy, parts work, as well as other embodiment and mindfulness based practices in centering healing and internal harmony that is based on each individual's truth.