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[personal profile] ceri
Queen Emily of Questioning Transphobia is guest-blogging over at Feministe at the moment, and has a great post up about what the sex declarations on forms mean in practice for trans people:

A small example: Imagine you went to the hospital, with stroke-like symptoms (it was later found to be “complicated migraines”). Because you want to actually be treated, you do not out yourself as transsexual. When the triage nurse filled in the forms, he puts female, and you leave it there. All is fine, the doctor for once treats you seriously, possibly because of the presence of your mum, aunt and cousin (quick lesson you learn when dealing with doctors while trans: there’s safety in cis scrutiny. Bring your mum or your partner with you into the examination room).

Fast forward to a week later, and I’m (sorry, you) at a neurology department to see a specialist to organize an MRI, when one of the reception people comes out to see you and starts screaming that you’re a GODDAMN LIAR because your forms say I’m female but some quirk of the computer system has found your birthdate and surname and pinged up an old treatment from when you were six. Because of this, they decide that your name isn’t real either, and it takes three trips to different departments with your changed birth certificate (changed in name but not in sex). In the end, they put a post-it on your file, with your name, your legal bloody name, in quotation marks like it’s a fucking nickname. And these are the people who are supposed to help you.

Now imagine what happens in an emergency situation.

As she says, this is one of those things that cis people just plain don't deal with very often. I haven't run into it yet...but inevitably I will. Every trans person does. The whole post (of which I've taken just one part) is well worth your reading.

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Ceri B.

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