Chelsea Manning shared a photo from the weekend after undergoing gender confirmation surgery.
In an article for the Guardian, Manning revealed her first time passing as a woman in public was in 2010.
Three years later, the day after her sentencing for violating the Espionage Act when she released hundreds of thousands of WikiLeak documents, her attorney released a statement announcing his client was female. The statement also asked people to use Manning’s new name Chelsea as well as feminine pronouns.
‘After almost a decade of fighting — thru prison, the courts, a hunger strike, and thru the insurance company — I finally got surgery this week,’ Manning wrote on Twitter.
She included a photo of herself in her hospital bed post-surgery.
In a follow-up tweet, Manning also criticized the Trump administration’s alleged plans to erase transgender people in the US.
‘Laws don’t determine our exisistence,’ she wrote. ‘We determine our exisistence.’
In the US, trans rights vary greatly from state to state.
Some critics say transgender healthcare is cosmetic, but courts have ruled this line of thought as discriminatory. Organizations like the American Medical Association (AMA) have also rejected these arguments.
A court ruled against the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the O’Donnabhain v. Commissioner case when the IRS brought a case against a trans woman. When the woman deducted her trans healthcare as medical expenses, the IRS said she couldn’t because they were cosmetic and experimental, the court disagreed.