I have been meaning to do this a while ago, but I want to join my story of coming out as transgender and discrimination I faced. I feel like this is important enough to show the struggles of being trans to non-trans people, but also I want to open up a little bit to people on AP.
! To start off with, I was born as intersex, or how I like to call it intersex male due to my biology sorta being male but not really. I raised as a male, though there were signs of me wanting to female. Specifically, like hating my private part and always sitting down to pee.
! I started hating having hair on my body, which is everywhere except on my head and eyebrows. I started to shave the hair off one part at a time. I didn't want to get caught by my mother who would frown about that. I started with just my wrists, then my chest, then finally my legs. (Somewhere around there my private area.) This was around 2010.
! I also had a period of crossdressing. It started after I dressed up as a girl for Halloween. I started to like the idea of painting my nails and wearing skirts! For work, I start to wear women's jeans. I think this helped me closer to figuring out who I really am to be.
! In 2012, I started to question my sex/gender, so I was confused if I wanted to be male or female. Eventually, I decided to be female, since a lot of the signs were there. I realized I was female because I picture myself with a female body AKA breasts and a vagina. This last part was a little down later on the road where I started to question again why I was transitioning, but it helped strengthen why I am a woman.
! I got my hormones on August 28, 2012! I started off with estrogen and two weeks later with testosterone blockers. When I got those blockers I finally started to present myself as a woman at my job at the time. I worked at a Walmart in Branson, Missouri. I did start to tell people about me changing sex/gender so I felt like I was too open. I did meet another trans woman who actually helped me get my hormones. She worked there at Home Office though later resigned to pursue her own thing.
! Now, here is where I started to face discrimination for being a transsexual. It was about the whole bathroom issue. I was basically stuck with either going to the men's or the private family bathroom in the far back of the store. Which is what I stuck with, the private bathroom, as I was uncomfortable with the idea of going to the men's.
! After some time in 2013, I decided to ask about using the female bathroom since I was passing more. One manager was fine, but he went to another one, and that one had a talk with me. He literally told me I couldn't go to the women's restroom till I got my bottom surgery. So, I decided to report him for discrimination.
! When I talked with the home office lady, everything came crashing down. She was on his side and not mine. I tried to fight, and she went so far to say that since Missouri didn't have transgender protections, she won't do anything. Apparently, it was such a big deal that I was male first and then changed to female, so apparently she was "thinking of the other women who worked there." That night I was so pissed where I imagined all the lights in the store just blinking out of existence.
! I tried to reach out to others to get support, but… that led to the truth of how people really thought of me. They "accepted" me but when it came to the bathroom issue, they showed their true colors. I remember one lady mocking me -- She was like "You, a woman?" and then she scoffed at it. I also felt betrayed by another friend who was female. She felt uncomfortable sharing the bathroom with me.
! After some time, I had another bathroom option, which was thanks to the new customer service manager. You see, I was basically a cashier at the time, so it was a pain to go to the back. The other bathroom option was to use the washroom located in the abandoned doctor's office. This option was great till the place got taken for some other usage.
! Sometime between all that, I had to deal with a customer who was very rude. He basically went around harassing me by calling me sir. I tried to reach out to a manager, but it was the same one who rejected the bathroom thing. He was like "Not all people will accept you, and I just had to deal with that." Instead of you know, making it so that I can feel at peace at work.
! Another incident I had that I'm sure it was transphobia was the switch from overnights to working in the daytime. I was told I was supposed to find my replacement, which I did, and then they rejected him. Apparently, they wanted him to be a stocker, but he wanted to stay as a cashier. And like he was supposed to be my replacement, so why not stay as cashier? It was just a pain and stressful moment. I then learned that it wasn't up to me to find someone to replace, it was management's job. After I complained enough I finally got to work on days.
! Eventually, I learned through research that Walmart itself that transgender protections. So, I went to a different manager that knew me and told him my story and struggles with this whole bathroom thing. He decided to go through home office, but I told him about the home office lady that was rude. So, he went through another person that was in the higher ups. And a few days later, he talked to me and said I can choose to go to any bathroom I wanted.
! After a happy moment, a few months later - 2015, I ended up getting a stalker who worked there. Her name is Polly and she scared me greatly; I felt very uncomfortable around her and tried to be friends. I decided to cut her off but still work with her if needed. (Though I refused to speak to her.) She was extremely obsessed about me to the point where she left a creepy letter on my car saying she watches when I sleep at my lunch break and even admitted she will try to sexual assault me because she couldn't resist.
! Sexual assault as in basically kiss attacking me on the lips. That really scared me and I got stuck working on a few registers close to my bosses. I was to park where the cameras could see me. This was to help me feel safe.
! It gotten worse though where Polly decided to ask someone that worked there to spy on me when I go to Denny's... that was the last straw and I quit my job. Walmart did nothing for several months and all I had to deal with going to work was being scared. I wanted to sue Walmart, but I was too cowardly to stand up for myself, so I gave up.
! In 2016, I moved to my current city of Pittsburgh from Missouri. I wanted to go to a place where there was transgender protections. The only really transphobia I faced was from customers. (I worked at a Dollar General around this time.) Like using the wrong pronouns even if I corrected them telling them that I am woman. I still face some of that to this day, I don't mind slip-ups but if after I tell you and you still refuse to disrespect me, I'm done being nice.
! Nowadays, I'm still scarred by the past, like even though I have protections to use facilities, I still get that paranoia and fear. Like at college, I was brave enough to use the showers there after using the gym, though it sucks it was open showers, so I just had my underwear on to feel safe and not scare anyone with the part I still have. Lucky for me, no one really used them, so it was nice.
! There was some other things too, like my mom not accepting me for who I am, though I have been reconnecting with her, and making her an exception to call me by my birth name. She isn't good with change, and I feel like once she sees me as who I am, she will start to see the truth and accept me. The good news is since I graduated in the spring of this year, my brother showed her my degree, and she didn't get triggered by my name on there! So, that is progress.
! As for surgeries, I only had laser hair removal which helped my face look more feminine. I do need more work on my voice as it sounds gender neutral and I want to sound like more like a woman. I also plan on getting bottom surgery, and lucky for me, Medicaid in my state can cover it. Though I have to get a BMI of 30 before I can even get it, but that's a goal I have been working on, so I can finally feel complete and be me.
! If you read up to this point, thank you for taking the time to read all this! I had quite a journey, but I'm happy that these days people are becoming more accepting of people like me. There's still a lot of progress, but I know eventually people will be understanding over time. I always try to educate others about this. With sharing my story, I'm educating everyone about my life as a trans woman. But anyways, thanks again for taking the time to read this! I hope it helped give some light on how life is for a trans person like me! :happy:
Thank you for sharing your story, starlalilymoon and best wishes on your journey as well.
I recently began studying intersexuality (is this the right wording?) and was amazed by how common it is, contrary to popular belief. I also learned about some misconceptions about it, some that I even fell for. For example, I used to believe that people with chromosomes that are not exclusively XX or XY have medical issues, such as Turner or Down Syndrome, but that's not the case for all of them. I'm also glad that being transgender is becoming more accepted, even though there's still progress to be made, such as having more accommodations and stopping hate. Please keep us updated on how things go.