ceri: (Default)
This is a question for y'all with transition experience, particularly those of you are late boomers like me. At what point did you start feeling comfortable having others calling you with the name and pronouns you wanted to transition into?

It's one thing for me right now to use this name and female pronouns when I'm posting here.  But I've had several of the friends I've come out to recently ask me how I'd like to have them address me in personal exchanges, and to be honest, I just don't know. There's a void in my head right now when it comes to what I actually want and feel is appropriate, right now, as opposed to years down the road.

I'm not looking for anyone to tell me what to do, exactly. (I'll accept advice, of course.) But I'm really mostly interested in others' experiences.
ceri: (Default)
Obviously I'm going to need to come out to the people I deal with. Thinking about this is....well, I'm going to quote Bruce Cockburn's "Get Up, Jonah":
I woke up thinking about Turkish drummers
It didn't take long: I don't know much about Turkish drummers
But it made me think of Germany
And the guy who sold me cigarettes
Who'd been in the Afghan secret police
Who made the observation
That it's hard... to live

Then I was reminded of the proprietor of a Vietnamese restaurant in Quebec
Who used to be head of the secret police in Danang
And it occurred to me I was thinking about all this stuff to keep from
thinking about something else
Isn't that just what secret police are all about now?
I'm scared to death about it. I've been told more than once that among people who've known me as a boy, in both professional and social contexts, that I have a reputation for a pretty thorough-going honesty. That's always been a partial truth. I am very up-front about some things, particularly disability-related matters, and have tried to be an advocate for a general respect and granting of dignity. But there's always been this side I kept hidden, partly because I could never be analytical about it in the way I like to be. Coming out will mean revealing not just what I'm hiding now, but what I have been hiding all along.

But...I feel okay about where I am right now. I've learned from systemic illness that there's nothing wrong with being afraid when you're facing something that actually is scary. It's a different kind of risk this time, but that's how emotions go. What I'm trying to do now is sort though what exactly it is I'm fearing. Things like, how will this person likely take it? What will I do when this person, whom I know to be moderately homo- and transphobic finds out and decides not to offer me more work? What do I need to tell the landlady who lives across town, before any of the other tenants offer up their own reports? On and on, with "I can't bear to think about this" as a warning sign that I need to.

A lot of the fears do shrink when I name and focus on them. Some loom even larger. But that's okay too. Knowing of upcoming challenges gives me the chance to prepare.

So, thought continues. And I write about it here partly to keep prodding myself toward action.

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ceri: (Default)
Ceri B.

April 2010

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