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Binding’s little instruction book

A whimsical tool that sheds light on gender-affirming care

Breathe Book Cover with illustrations of different people in different stages of life regarding binding




Maia Kebab & Sarah Peitzmeier, PhD


nonbinary | Transgender

Trans and nonbinary people, assigned female at birth, account for approximately 1% of the US population. As familiar as the chest binding may be to them, not all queer AFABs bind their torso. But for those who do bind or are thinking of it, this book is an excellent resource for self-care while binding.

As a lesbian and someone who wears a sports bra to tame my breasts regularly, I assumed binding was straightforward. But it’s a complicated issue that deals with more than just body dysmorphic disorder, especially for the AFAB transgender and nonbinary community.

Bestselling author of Gender Queer, Maia Kababe, partnered with Sarah Peitzmeier, PhD, a researcher for the University of Michigan, to create this book that follows four individuals in different stages of chest binding. The first half of the book cleverly showcases their journey, which includes their successes, limitations, and suggestions for binding. The second half draws attention to self-care while chest binding.

Expertly illustrated in hues of blue—it’s my favorite color, so thanks Maia—it positively introduces gender-affirming care to AFAB trans and nonbinary folks and their parents. Kudos to Maia and Sarah for their important work.

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About the author(s).

Maia Kobabe (e/em/eir) is the author and illustrator of the award-winning and bestselling Gender Queer: A Memoir, the most banned book in America in 2021 and 2022. E and eir work have been featured in Time, NPR, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and many other outlets.

Sarah Peitzmeier, PhD, MSPH (she/her) is a social epidemiologist and assistant professor in the Department of Health Behavior and Biological Sciences at the University of Michigan. Her work focuses on gender-based violence and sexual health, particularly in LGBTQ+ communities.

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