Transgender Life

I don’t want this site to be solely about being transgender. From my experiences so far, it’s not even something I could write about every week – being in the closet is far more intense and frustrating and writeable. However, there are moments when things happen, unique to trans people. I’d like to share those moments with you, and let you into the mystery.

Trans Remembrance 2017


Trans Remembrance 19.11.17

We gathered, commemorated, and also celebrated our identities. I wish I had promoted the event more successfully, and yes, more professionally, but that's a thing for another time. Elaine Gallagher, our guest speaker, spoke movingly about unemployment, about being single, and the awkward, probing questions that she's asked. She never frequents pubs anymore.

There's an overlap with my own life, the period when I thought no one would employ me, the idea of romance as something other people experience. I too don't go to pubs unless it's nearby and one I know and is safe for me, and I'm meeting people there. Though to be honest, pubs are so expensive anyway for what you get, so being trans is not the only reason I avoid them. Cinemas with bars are so much better, and much, much safer.

This posting is ostensibly about the Trans Remembrance event I helped to organize last Friday, but it's hard not to get personal. I'm relieved that over forty people came, there are audiences that generate good feelings, and this was one of them. I'm grateful that my friends and flatmate came, that so many people came of different generations and backgrounds: allies and cis-gendered who were just curious, trans and non-binary, undergrads, postgrads, the girl from Lighthouse Books, even my PhD supervisor. Several members of the Staff Pride Network, for whom I feel like their special agent, two of them came early to help me set things up. You can see my bosses in this voluntary network in the main photo: Judith Rauhofer and Jonathan MacBride either side of me. We look happy, don't we? We genuinely were, I think everyone was though I wish we'd had more wine and food to give everyone.

We held a minute's silence and displayed the names on walls of the nearly three hundred trans or non-binary murder victims of hate crimes this past year.

The guest speaker was great, the film was engaging, and my two-person post-film panel worked better than the five-person panel I used in a previous event: Kai and Han spoke fluently and were relaxed as we deconstructed our screened movie Romeos (2011). It's a film I recommend for anyone who wants insight into some of the issues with transitioning, not least how it impacts on your relationships, the platonic and romantic ones, as you look for love.

So, to end this post about something that mixes tragedy with celebration. This event of Trans Remembrance reminds me that I'm one of the lucky ones. I look at the photo of me and I quite like how I look. One and a half years since I came out and as transitioning goes, I think it's gone quite well.
A Difficult Week for Trans Rights
Happy Fucking Transgender Remembrance


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Saturday, 28 March 2020

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