Being Stealth Around Other Transgender People
I decided when I went to University that I would keep my transgender identity private. Not a secret. It is a part of myself that I consider to be personal and so for that reason I tell only those that I’m closest to. I also find that when you tell someone it can strengthen that friendship, as I am letting them into a vulnerable part of myself. Recently I told a close friend of mine. I was scared because in the back of my mind I’m imagining rejection, or to be thought of as ‘the transgender friend’, or even to not be seen as male because I do not have a penis. Despite that, all of my ‘coming out’ to people has been a pretty positive experience and I don’t regret anyone who I have told.
Onto the topic at hand, I have been around other members of the LGBTQ community that are out and proud (which is great) who treat me like just another ‘white heterosexual guy’. For example, at a Christmas meal with a few of my friends, a guy I’d never met before who was opening gay was also there. Whenever I said anything he’d roll his eyes and say “straight guys,” and it wasn’t in a nice way either. Never in my life did I think I would be judged as a straight heterosexual male (the total majority). I didn’t want to turn around and be like “actually I’m transgender!” in front of people I wasn’t completely comfortable with. Although I have the belief that no one needs to know what’s in my trousers, I couldn’t help feeling a little left out.
Recently at work I’ve had a new manager who’s a transgender woman. I thought that was great, more diversity in the work place. I had respect for her because I know there were a lot of comments made about her by ignorant people that I work with. I spoke to her quite a bit over the last few weeks and as she’s open about her transgender identity and I’m not it’s quite an unusual relationship. When she talks about certain things I 100% can relate to but I keep my thoughts to myself because I definitely don’t want to out myself at work. It’s a strange feeling. I just feel left out. Other than the other bloggers that I talk to on here I don’t have any transgender friend. One of my friends transitioned but I found they were only messaging me when they wanted something, information or advice. That’s okay, I helped him, but I kind of just wanted a friend that could understand that part of me.
Like I said, it’s strange feeling left out. Especially considering at the beginning of my transition I used to cry about how I wanted to feel normal (whatever that is). I definitely do not want to come out at work. I like that I only tell people that I’m close to. But it is an interesting position that I never considered before, so I thought that I’d share it.