Friday, 2 December 2011

Trans or ally at work

So I got a new job. Nothing special, just temp work over the christmas period. I'm currently a bookseller and it is very fun. I may be able to stay after xmas, but for massively reduced hours, but work is work.

I'm not out at work, I wasn't really out at my old job but I never really hid it. In this job I don't really have anything that needs a flaunt or a hide. We all wear the same clothes (red is one of my flattering colours) and I need my hair tied back otherwise it really gets in the way.

My only real show of my trans nature is my transgendered symbol badge on my bag that I try to wear all the time so that even when I'm in man mode I can hopefully show support.

Mainly though, a big difference is that in my old job I could hear a transphobic comment and not really have the confidence or opportunity to educate, as it was a 300+ people company chances are I wouldn't know the person who said the comment and I certainly wouldn't remember who they were after. Where I work now there are 8 other people, so it's a lot more close knit. I've not had to educate yet but I have found it prudent to declare myself as an ally. Such as in the following conversation:

AM - "I caught some of the ghastly show My Transsexual Summer last night"
Me - "Oh yea? That's a shame, I quite like it and I have a few transgendered friends who find it to be quite accurate and sympathetic"
This then proceeded to a conversation about transgendered rights and it's representation in pink politics and such. He was rather taken back when I told him that the average age of a transgendered person is only 23 years old and we ended up on a positive note.

I don't think his critisism of MTS would have resulted in transphobic comments, I think his opinion would have only been on the show being similar to the other "freak show" documentaries on TV (which it may appear to be by the name, but really isn't) so I at least stuck my oar in to defend the show which I enjoyed immensely.

The result of this conversation is that I've now shown that I won't accept anything transphobic without having to actually accuse anyone of being so (I wouldn't strait out say "You're Transphobic you Cissexist bastard!") as I know they are all very nice people, but nice people who don't know what may be offensive can still offend. As it were...

I've also told everyone I can about my book I'm writing with the transsexual femme fatale, and expanded but saying I'm an ally and all that.

If I get this job permanently, which I hope I do as I really do love it, then I need to think to myself if I would be comfortable outing myself to my work mates. And I think that the answer is a yes. So that's good.

1 comment:

  1. By then, when you come out, they will already expecti it, I guess!

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