I’ve been out as transgender and living as a woman now for three years, and looking back it hasn’t been that bad as far as getting clocked, or misgendered. I don’t think I pass well at all and I hardly even get noticed. Mostly I get clocked in stores where the employees have to call the customer sir, or mam, or miss, or whatever. Most of them are too busy trying to be polite to look at you. I used to let it go and it bothered me big time, so I started correcting people. It does not help. I could be standing there with a dress on getting my card out of my purse and I will get called sir. I have a lot of different reactions. From cursing them out or misgendering them, to just leaving all my stuff there and walking out. If I go to a big store I always go to a female cashier, it’s much easier.
I have problems with anxiety. Not so much anymore but when I first came out I was having problems with it and the only things that got me through it was knowing that any man who would say something derogatory to a woman is a pussy. I have come across a lot of pussies in my life and I know they only start shit with people they think are weaker than them. Something as simple as, “What did you say?”, will change their attitude fast. Ignoring them works too, but it also angers them sometimes, I’ve had one curse at me after I walked past him because I just kept walking and smiling and I totally ignored his existence. Pussies are not looking for a challenge, their just miserable and they want you to be miserable too.
When I was out on the streets and out and about at night I always had a flathead screwdriver on me somewhere because it’s not considered a weapon like a phillips screwdriver is. Carrying a weapon is a double edge sword though, because it could protect you, or it could be taken from you and used on you. Thank God I never had to use a weapon, and thank God I dont have to walk around in fear. One thing I didnt consider in my old life is running away, now I think it would be my first choice.
I also learned to act like I belonged wherever I went. I learned to never look nervous or scared. Smile back if someone smiles at you, or tips their hat, or nods. Especially elderly people. Take your time, don’t walk fast. Most importantly, don’t worry. People notice you as little as you notice them. Everybody is in their own little worlds, they want to get where their going with little or no contact or hassles. One day downtown I noticed that most of the men that noticed me didn’t look at my face, they were looking at my boobs.
When I first came out it was before I even went to my first clinic. I stuffed a bra and wore minimal makeup and just started living as me. I refused to hide myself any longer. I was determined to live as me. It was weird at first but I was in early recovery so I was dealing with that too. I think coming out the way I did helped me a lot by giving me confidence. The confidence to say, “This is me, don’t like it, go screw yourself.” I dress the way I have always dressed, jeans, boots and instead of T shirts, low cut tops. I do not wear “mom” jeans or old lady dresses. I wear small dresses and I save them for special places. A dress is not a uniform that all women have to wear, unless it’s your style.