Tag Archive | Geometronics Service Center

‘Trouble’

(1970 06) Slim - Crater Lake (sitting - portrait)

*

‘Trouble’

(16 Feb 2019)

*

Share this video if you think that Trans Rights are Human Rights:

*

(2019 02 16) Share this video 1 52011329_698468003888835_6734441044328316928_nThese are quite real issues that have apparently had little change during the past four decades since the time when I began my adult Transition (1974 at age 18).

Two employers during my early Transition effectively condoned what amounts to criminal, felonious assault.  This first occurred when I was employed at a service station (1975 – 1976), the second was when I was employed as a Substitute Teacher (1977- 1978).  Be they co-workers or students, assailants grabbed at me, pushed me, said words that should not be spoken.  These events were my daily endurance.  To the people who knew me during that time – please think back to those years and realise now how this explains what was happening in my personal life.

Recall that I changed my Social Security file in Summer 1978; my new SSA card arrived September 1978 (remember, Uncle Jack?).

(2019 02 16) Share this video 6 51944635_289666955059356_8763330599357251584_nI found employment with the Forest Service (1978 – 1985); they soon discovered something not obvious about me.  I returned from lunch one day in January 1979 – early, before the other co-workers returned – and overheard their infamous debate about me, that conversation between Edie (my supervisor) and Nancy (the clerical pool supervisor):

  • ‘He’s a she!’
  • ‘No! She’s a he!’.

Dunno if they knew that I was there at the office or not.  But I became extremely frightened about my future.

Why did they have their debate?

How did they suspect?

Social Security Administration issues their monthly discrepancy report – it lists whose identities do not match between what SSA has in their records about that employee versus what an employee presents to their employer. There I was – my SSAN file is now Sharon, but I was employed presenting as Nick.

I eventually composed a statement to submit to Edie if the appropriate time came.  Maybe it did and I missed it; maybe I should have told her, or maybe it was better that I kept my mouth shut.  Dunno.  Life usually allows only one opportunity to do it correctly, the rest of the time, well, we make do.

(2019 02 16) Share this video 2 52558992_2249298458726825_9073576539781595136_nWord got out; people at work made me their subject of their gossip.  Most every co-worker at Kaibab abused me in one way or another.  I shall never really know whether my promotion to the Forest Service’s GSC was on my merit, or Edie’s way to get rid of my ‘trouble’.  But ‘trouble’ it was that followed me to Utah (October 1980).

Remember, the Forest Service had my SSA file reporting me as Sharon / female from the beginning of my appointment (December 1978); I made my legal ID change to Sharon / female by early 1980.  So it came to be that Forest Service management knew of me – officially, according to my documentation – as Sharon / female, not Nick / male.  My presenting as Nick / male unwittingly fostered their imagination that I was Sharon / female in Transition to Nick / male – a F-M Transsexual.  (See my essay:  ‘My Own ‘Victor / Victoria’ Days’, 23 Jul 2015).

Blanche, my new supervisor (February 1981), certainly made herself and her antipathies obvious, the Southern Conservative that she was.  Gossip soon spread that there was a F-M Transsexual among the workforce of about 150 employees.  GSC only knew of me – legally – as Sharon / female, not Nick / male.  Blanche, Don, Gary, John, Gloria were among the management at GSC who exposed my privacy.  LeeAnne, Pat, Dreama were among the leading co-workers who were spreading their hateful gossip – usually behind my back or in whispered tones when I approached – methods common among bullies.

Blanche’s final act before she retired (May 1983) was to summon me to her office:

  • Blanche (in her Southern drawl):  ‘There is gossip that someone here in the office is a woman working as a man.  I think that it’s you.  No, I know that it’s you.  We just can’t have that here.’

(2019 02 16) Share this video 3 52011207_2205907499648042_663778025841623040_nWith that, Forest Service initiated termination action against me.

I had been earlier promoted to Personnel Specialist; they took that from me and demoted me to Clerk, though they obligated me to continue my same duties.  They imposed upon me to work concurrent appointments at multiple Forest Service offices – Uintah and Wasatch – trying to shake me – discourage me – to no avail.  I fought valiantly for two years, clinging to both my employment and my dignity, til the time was right for me to move on.

Strangers among the people at the commercial office building where I worked were regularly mis-gendering me as female by 1984 (Remember when that man in the men’s restroom thought that I was a woman?).  I could go shopping and be mis-gendered female.  I had a date with the sales clerk at the quickie mart gasoline station; I suspect that she wanted to figure out whether I was male or female.  That was happening while I was still presenting as Nick, trying to present as male.  Proof to me (1985) that it was time to get a clue, buy a vowel.

I was long-ready to complete my Transition anyway.  Two surgeries finished the physical part (1982, 1983) – at least what was available and presented to me at those occasions.  All that remained was making life official.

I applied for Unemployment Insurance (June 1985).  Forest Service challenged my request; they lost.  UI determined that I endured six long years of the Forest Service’s ‘hostile work environment‘.

(2019 02 16) Share this video 11 51353612_2153017344942820_7883270072167301120_nI knocked around for several years – forced to accept low-wage and Minimum Wage employment because no one really wanted to hire me (1985 – 1990).  Dunno?  I never said anything about being Transsexual.  I still expected that being stealth was the best alternative.  I control my private, personal, medical concern; this is not something subject to employers’ debate regardless about what the Forest Service did to me.

My dad became terminally ill (January 1989).  He went to obtain treatment ‘back East’ (April 1989).  I quit my job to be with my dad during his last three weeks.  He died July 1989.

I returned home – back to looking for jobs that never came – unemployed for a year.  I eventually applied for Food Stamps because the money in my savings was running low.  One day, during one Food Stamps appointment, the case manager asked if I was interested in a job similar as hers being a Public Assistance case manager.  Well … civil service tests, applications, and interviews later and I got hired by the state’s public assistance agency (July 1990).

(2019 02 16) Share this video 9 52144356_375188649979433_2159665313417789440_nGood times were fleeting.  I had only been on the job a few months when Ros, one of the unit supervisors, approached me at the employee water fountain:

  • Ros: ‘I know what you are.  I’m going to get you.’

A clear threat that she made good.  She enticed Patti, the office Director, to assign me to her unit.  The next two years were filled with Ros’ antagonist behaviour – taunts, threats, work overloaded, irrational performance appraisals, forced over-time without pay.  My only recourse was to resign from work and seek other employment (June 1983).

Six months later and I was hired by another state agency to their Payroll department.  Trouble again with Ann, the supervising manager.  She was not quite explicit, but she made it known that I was not welcomed.  She passed over me when time came for two opportunities at promotion, despite my superior qualifications compared to the others whom she selected.  Eventually, Dan came along as my supervisor; he promoted me to Fiscal Specialist.  One day, Dan had a unique project for me – an audit that Ann required.  I was reluctant to deal with it, fearing that it was Ann setting me up to fail.  I completed the audit better than Ann or Dan expected.  I finally seemed to have earned Ann’s respect; we got along well after that.

Another state agency came along and hired me (May 1999).  They assigned me to manage a wide variety of spreadsheets and databases; I was preparing and maintaining accounts to billions of Dollars balanced exactly to the penny.  My work performance won PIPP bonus every quarter.  The agency named me Employee of the Quarter.  The agency included me in other superior performance awards – even while Bettye, my new supervisor toward the latter time of my tenure, was destroying my work and my character.  Mind you, she frequently ditched work un-announced following gambling binges.  She was also about as close to being a chain smoker – constantly excusing herself to take her incessant cigarette breaks.  The common, frequent refrain from we at work:

  • ‘Where’s Bettye?’

All came crashing about one week following an agency gathering in which they issued another agency-wide award to me as part of our work group.  My agency Director summoned me to his office and presented termination papers to me – ‘mentally unfit’ to be a State employee because I am Transsexual (August 2008).  I fought and won my case through the state employment and legal process.  No matter, the agency refused to restore me to duty, contravening their legal order to comply.

I filed for Unemployment Insurance (2010).  This time, the state as employer conceded to all charges; UI again determined that that employer waged a ‘hostile work environment’ against me.

*

ขอบคุณค่ะ

I thank you who have read this far.

None of this all matters other than my documenting that we Trans persons are not secure in our employment.

(2019 02 16) Share this video 10 52188009_409033619663738_7481433924090986496_nWe endure hardship – hostilities at work if we can find employment; otherwise, lack of work, lack of income, economic calamity, and poverty when we are denied gainfull employment.

The financial cost to me is in the millions of Dollars considering less income due to the loss of better-paid employment with either the Forest Service, or the state, or any other prospective employment during the 40-some years of my advanced careers.  Add the loss of investment income that would have derived from greater available income.  Add the loss of income upon retirement – less Social Security retirement, lost federal retirement, diminished state retirement.  Add the loss of home and life’s better necessities and luxuries.  Now know that I have it good compared to many, if not most, Trans people who live on far less income, have no home to call their own, resort to food box donations for their sustenance.

(2019 02 16) Share this video 8 52508087_1285292014967915_3122009837676789760_nLost family and ‘friends’ already happened since childhood.  No family corresponds with me in any continual, meaningful way.  Last time when I saw any family was 1993 – when cousins un-invited me to Thanksgiving Day holiday.  I tried to maintain a relationship with one cousin into early-1994, but they were stringing me along; there was little sincerity from them.

I do have a select few Friends from my ‘before’.  Thank you for being with me, though geographical distance is with us.

I also have a small number of Friends among people locally where I reside.  Thank you.

And I feel good about the opportunity to develop Friends through these cyber environments.  Thank you.

Real Friends read this far.  Thank you!

(I shall continue this narrative in a moment.)

I had to repeatedly save and close this essay for fear of losing the composition midway.(2019 02 16) Degrassi Junior High 52501631_244370839838386_2925488837339643904_n

I think that I am now completed with this.

Thank you, Rachel; I shall return my attention to binging on Degrassi:

(https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLJPfzYM-5WKDZWVNjwyvJjvXRNetbW32z)

(https://youtu.be/l_SHtG6_6Sc)(2019 02 16) Degrassi High 52020871_1337373976405144_5069493660614131712_n

(https://youtu.be/4vp3nT5G5uQ)

(https://youtu.be/tf8kd-M6_ng)

(https://youtu.be/fXjiI3gRMNE)

(https://youtu.be/ahIrTy4WDGM)

*(2019 02 16) Degrassi Next Generation 51951397_244962373059901_5481568946299600896_n

Resources:

(https://growinguptransgender.com/2019/02/13/offensive-dated-harmful-2019-research-from-gids/)

(https://planettransgender.com/transgender-refugee-denied-us-entry-murdered-in-san-salvador/?fbclid=IwAR1HzeiDS7evcuvEx1Jm3pPxg-Llm60fCuP0ezg4W36VGOdShkcilVyHRcQ)

(https://www.dailyxtra.com/the-real-price-of-transphobia-142981)

(https://www.gdaworkinggroup.com)

(https://www.newsweek.com/kansas-gops-vote-against-transgender-people-part-worrying-trend-821087)

(https://suzichase.wordpress.com/2019/02/12/usa-today-shouldnt-print-hate-as-opinion/)

(https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/voices/2019/02/11/transgender-debate-transitioning-sex-gender-column/1894076002/)

(https://youtu.be/T27IMxQ7LeI)

(https://www.facebook.com/642723339139028/posts/2053040598107288/)

(http://debbie-ballard.com/bill-of-rights-lgbt.html)

(https://www.advocate.com/news/2019/2/16/sharon-bottoms-center-famed-custody-case-dead-48?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=news)

(http://www.tennis.com/pro-game/2017/07/40-years-later-renee-richards-breakthrough-important-ever/68064/)

(https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10155688179621315&id=618536314)

(https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/909129)

(https://www.patheos.com/blogs/formerlyfundie/10-signs-youre-actually-following-trumpianity-instead-of-christianity/?fbclid=IwAR06EFHRwudPt1-2fklIkZ1E9V_T9mXLrYwrsLMUwZJmsNlX0dBSxm4cSM0)

(https://www.facebook.com/642723339139028/posts/2053040598107288/)

*

Dear Reader:

Please return next time for another essay.

*

 

‘Male Fail’

*

Business before pleasure.

Our spirit friend Cara is messenger bearing bad news.

  • ‘Transgender Woman Killed in Wichita’ – Sunnivie Brydum (3 May 16, 1:40 pm EDT)
  • ‘A 16-year-old is in custody after allegedly fatally stabbing Tyreece “Reecey” Walker in her own home Sunday night.’
  • ‘A 16-year-old boy is facing second-degree murder charges after allegedly stabbing to death a 32-year-old transgender woman in Wichita, Kansas on Sunday, reports Wichita news station KAKE.’
  • ‘Police identified the victim using male pronouns and the name Tyreece Walker, though friends and family of the deceased told police that Walker identified as a transgender woman.’

Why is the accused labelled a ‘boy’ for having been charged with an adult hate crime?

*

What is ‘male fail’?

A person going through transition will encounter their end stage when others no longer perceive them as their originating person, but as their target identity.

In other words, for me, I went from my male presence to female presence.  People did not accept my male persona at the end of my male presence because I appeared too feminised to be accepted as male.  I ‘failed’ being ‘male’.

Perhaps it was inter-sex that I had two eras of my ‘male fail’, my first was my teens when I went thru my female para-puberty.  People who see those pictures of me at age 16 and age 20 and do not know in advance that it is me tell me that they see my appearance is more female than male.

I received much abuse as that female-appearing male all through those years (age 14 to 22).  I suppose this experience equates with that of F-M transsexuals during their teen years though I was in reverse of their direction.  Perhaps that topic can be my future post.

My second and final ‘male fail’ occurred during my 20s (1979 – 1985).  As I shall discuss here, my employer clearly failed to accept my male presence due to my ever-increasing female appearance and presence.

*

Quote:

‘No matter what official ‘Policies’ there are, if management wants you out, you’re out.’

*

The euphoria of my employment paper changes was amazing:

  • Social Security Administration accepted my file change to my new name as Sharon and as female (September 1978).
  • My state affirmed me female under my new name, Sharon, and issued my new MVD licence (Spring 1980).

*

Employed as a male by the federal government (a civilian appointment to the Department of the Army) beginning 1977, I continued as such and used my male predecessor name Nick when I began my federal employment tenure at the USDA Forest Service; I was not ready in my stage of transition to work as my female self Sharon when I began working at the Forest Service (December 1978). My employing agency learned of my sex change on paper when my name appeared on Social Security’s discrepancy list.

  • ‘He’s a she.’ ‘No, she’s a he.’

I over-heard those words as Edie, my supervisor, was talking about me to Nancy, another supervisor, when I passed her office one day (1979). My employing agency made no issue of this directly to me. I prepared a letter to submit to my supervisor for just-in-case purposes. That was not necessary; the agency selected me for promotion and transfer to the new Geometronics Service Center at West Valley City, Utah (October 1980). Was it because my current supervisor wanted to pass my presence to another office or did I truly earn it?

My transition at my new Forest Service assignment and duty station location continued my ‘Victor / Victoria’ era – I am legally female working as male living as a woman pretending to be a man.  Employment security diminished as agency management at my new office saw my female identification on the SSA discrepancy list and acted variously.

I eventually rotated among three Forest Service duty stations at three different employing offices.  I began at West Valley City (1980 – 1985), then a concurrent assignment to the Uintah National Forest Supervisor’s Office at Provo (Summer 1984), and ended with a concurrent assignment to the Wasatch-Cache National Forests Supervisor’s Office at Salt Lake City (1984 – 1985).

*

Bob, my first supervisor at my Utah duty station, disguised a ‘date’ as a get-to-know-each-other invitation to me for dinner and a guy’s evening at his home (November 1980).  This was an evening more involved than Steve’s invitation to me when I worked at Williams, Arizona.

Who did Bob think I was:

  • (a)  a female (according to my SSA file) presenting as a male?
  • (b)  a Lesbian living as a male?
  • (c)  a heterosexual male (as I presented myself)?
  • (d)  a homosexual male (according to office gossip)?

Wow! was I presenting quite a confusing set of circumstances in my ignorance of that time.

Gawd knows what other options floated their boats.

  • ‘You can’t think at the ‘Great Thalt Lake’.

What were Bob’s true expectations and intentions?  These were questions left un-answered at least because he was promoted to a new assignment at a different state and the scenario did not play out with him.

*

My male presenting declined into clear failure – now known to me by the term ‘male fail’ – by 1983 and led to Blanche, the second supervisor at my West Valley City duty station, proving the danger to my livelihood.  She called me to her office one day; she told me,

  • ‘I know you are a female. We can’t have you working here as a male.’

Or thereabouts.  She directly threatened to fire me on her charge of my being F-M transsexual.  She exposed my private medical information throughout the office.  I began hearing those familiar ‘She’s a he!’ and ‘He’s a she!’ whispers from several co-workers and managers at that office; I heard far worse words from many others though no one ever had the indecency to actually speak them to my face.

I feared my supervisor’s threat that day; she made them real.  My regret was that I did not return to work the next day as Sharon / female, walk directly to her at her office, and inform her, ‘Here I am.  I shall be from now on working as who I am – as Sharon – as female.’  Looking back on that time, it would have been the best opportunity to complete transition to female at work.  She could no longer accuse me of being a female working there as a male though I’m certain the gossip would have flown wilder than ever before.  My full change was valid:  SSA recorded me as Sharon and female (1978), my state legally affirmed my name change to Sharon and my sex change to female (1980), and my operations finalised my female anatomy (1982, 1983).

Why was I still waiting in 1983?

Fear.

That is my lesson learned.

A problem looking at it then as current events and looking back at it now as history was my lack of available transition counselling.  Again, these were the dark days of early 1983 – more than 30 years ago.  I had no transition counselling since my move from Arizona (October 1980).  Maybe I should have called long distance to my former counsellor at Arizona?  I would have not even the semblance of transition counselling until later 1983 and early 1984 through mid-1985.  That was poor transition counselling at best and a failure at worst; not that I lay blame on them, it was the circumstances of those times.  I was attending mostly group sessions; the counsellor’s instructions to me were to minimise my transition issues during group and reserve them to occasional one-on-one sessions.

*

If I had a local counsellor the day when Blanche called me to her office and declared her charges against me, I would have called that counsellor on the telephone immediately after work and sought advice at an emergency session.  Looking back, if I were the counsellor, then I would have advised Sharon to come for an emergency one-on-one meeting to discuss plans and tell her to bring a few change of clothes to test her female presentation – I’d tell her it’s time, now or never.

I was still scared; there was advancing that finality presenting as female with the notion there was no going back.  Sure, I had years wearing my sister’s clothes either in private, among family, or in public as a child and teen.  I eventually wore my own feminine female attire since 1974 though less in public as an adult.  I was wearing something of uni-sex female attire (jeans, tops, shoes, sox, etc.) what to me I presumed others perceived as accepted male attire.

Presenting as female in public once and for all appeared to me in those long ago days to be a mountain when in fact was nowhere as high as the proverbial molehill.

Remember what was in my head.  My father had my transitioning Uncle Frank arrested during transition.  The family had Uncle Frank murdered during transition.  What if something went terribly wrong with my adult presenting and the Mormon police arrested me?

You who are working out your transition plans today have my full empathy and great support.  I know exactly what is tearing your mind apart – ‘been there, done that’.  I’m here for you.

*

I did not come ‘out’ where I was employed, but I’m certain that my changes must have been noticeable during my final physiological transition from male to female.  I continued growing my hair shoulder length and got occasional female-styled perms by my friend who supervised the Cosmetology Department at Utah Technical College, the nearby community college.

Clearly recognised was my increasing absence of body hair and facial hair.

I long earlier already ditched my male attire and replaced it with my uni-sex female attire.  The only clothing that could be identified as male were my business office shirts – required while I worked at my employer’s personnel department while still presenting there as male.  Denim pants / jeans are part of the official Forest Service federal agency uniform so I wore my women’s-wear jeans every day.

I learned female fashion to co-ordinate my male office shirt with a matching female sweater / vest / pull-over and sox as I progressed through feminisation though still presenting as male at work during my transition to female.

Looking back, this attire surely must have begun up-setting my employment surroundings – mostly when I really went full steam ahead at my subsequent downtown Salt Lake City office location.

Looking back, I was oblivious to what I was doing.

There are some pull-over sweaters that I wore to accessorise with my male office shirt that I see nowadays are very clearly quite feminine; I wonder now how I thought I was satisfactorily presenting as male at work.  Among my favourite remains an off-white sweater with soft blue pastel highlights.  I look at that now and I wonder; I had moxie wearing that at work expecting others to accept my presence as male especially by 1983, 1984, and definitely 1985.  They didn’t, they couldn’t.  Some who did not know me at our large office building addressed me as female.

(1981 xx xx) Work ID Photographs(1985 08 xx) Pima CC ID - (1988 xx xx) DES ID

There was the array of our agency’s organisational chart on a wall outside our Director’s Office.  This wall presented each of approximately 150 employee’s name, position title, grade, and office identification photograph.  There I was, my infamous 1981 picture (left).  All anyone needed to do was walk a few yards down the hall to my desk and see me by 1983 looking quite different (right, my appearance by 1985).  It did not require a rocket scientist to figure this one out.

I now know of this condition as ‘Male Fail’.

*

I learned early that I had to wear something up top to protect my anatomy from getting rubbed raw.  A bra was out of the question when I was presenting as male at work, that was another reason why I wore multiple T-shirts under my business office shirts to help hide my ‘B’ sized ‘girls’ under this male office attire; that soft cotton fit that bill.  Sometimes a soft paper towel helpt.  I frequently added that sweater vest – women’s wear, of course – over my office shirt to create bulk layers trying to hide my blossoming self.  Some days my two bumps were more noticeable than other days – depending upon what I wore.  I’m certain that I grew to care less about that as time wore on.

People at work (Blanche, LeeAnne, Dreama, Patsy, Gloria, Gary, Don, John among my nemeses) long-suspected my status was F-M through their cruel gossip; working as Sharon could have changed that gossip in short order.

Terry, my immediate co-worker in our Personnel Department, saw my devolving physical changes every day for four years yet apparently did not fully perceive them until we chatted at her home one evening after work (1985).  It was just another visit of many routine visits as I had been her otherwise dutifull male friend.  She suddenly asked why I had no facial hair, then looked at my arms and hands and asked why I had no body hair.

Jean was a curious co-worker.  She is Lesbian.  We participated in many of the same after-work political and civics activities.  She did not approach me about my condition the four years we worked together and knew each other socially outside work.  Huh?  I give her credit being strong and ‘out’ during those years.

Betty, my jigsaw puzzle friend, was my only true support at work who did not question my ‘male’ presence that was clearly kaput by 1985.

Meanwhile, my employer’s action to fire me as a F-M transsexual persisted two years through the administrative process (1983 – 1985).  I eventually resigned (1985).  I then petitioned for Unemployment Insurance.  UI agreed and determined that my Forest Service employer conducted an ‘intolerable work environment’ against me.  Surprise vindication.

While my federal agency was firing me as a transsexual, I learned they were openly accepting Roberta, a M-F transsexual employee at another location within my same organisational structure.

Go figure.

*

 

‘My Own ‘Victor / Victoria’ Days’

*

I met Kathy Q and Virginia during my nights socialising and dancing at disco clubs (1979 – 1980).

Kathy Q began as a light relationship, yet became important.  It was early during my transition.  I was uncertain of my life’s future as well as any extended future with her or anyone else for that matter.  We were dance partners with no attachment so I came out to her as a test.  She expressed curiosity.  She agreed to me to try her birth control pills to help me determine how I may or may not decide to change.  Hey, we were not sexual so there was no concern of an un-planned pregnancy (she had no idea of my true inter-sexed female anatomy any more than I at that time).

Virginia was different.  We also soclialised at the disco dancing clubs (1980).  We mutually foresaw a prospect of a serious friendship; she seemingly wanted more than our platonic friendship.  We had a few quiet dates that I refused to allow to go far.  She frequently invited me to her home but I would not allow anything to happen.  Our holding hands and talking satisfied Virginia.  I suppose in some ways she appreciated my friendship because I was not that groping male as she surely had experienced with other males.

I also danced with other women at the disco clubs.  None knew my medical situation.  I must have been an odd male dance partner.  Dancing close became a matter of me out-manoeuvering the groping hands of my female dance partners.  I could not allow them to feel my female chest.  They would rub their leg attempting to arouse me between my legs; there was nothing male to arouse.  Did they perceive themselves failing to attract a male (me)?

Yes, as you now know, as your estrogen transitions your body to female, your body transitions to the female scent.  It’s part of the entirety of your change.  Your partner will smell your female scent and will taste your female taste.  So it seemed puzzling to me that neither Kathy Q, Virginia, nor any dance partner smelled my female scent or tasted my female taste; or at least none commented to me about it, perhaps their fear of what they did not comprehend.

I had one major fear during my dancing days – fear of being discovered if a female dance partner ever felt my blossoming girls (a large ‘B’ or small ‘C’ by then) that were at least as much as hers.

That era ended when I moved to Utah (October 1980).

*

Baby steps helpt me seamlessly continue along my transition.  I could not believe how easy that went.  Or was I so naive?

Social Security Administration accepted my file change to my new name as Sharon and as female (September 1978); my state affirmed me female under my new name (Spring 1980).  The euphoria of those paper legal changes was amazing!

I was employed as a male by the U.S. federal government (1977 – 1985).  I continued using my old name (Nick) at my December 1978 appointment to the USDA Forest Service (where I remained employed until May 1985).  I was not ready to present and work as Sharon, my female self – physically, emotionally.

My Forest Service employing agency learned of my legal sex change on paper when my name appeared on Social Security’s discrepancy list.  I learned that they learned when I was returning early from lunch break, passed by my supervisor’s office, and over-heard my supervisor talking about me to another supervisor one day (January 1979):

  • ‘He’s a she!’ said one.
  • ‘No, she’s a he!’ said the other.

My employing agency made no issue of this directly to me.  I prepared a letter to submit to my supervisor for just-in-case purposes.  That letter would not be necessary; the agency selected me for promotion and transfer to the Forest Service’s new Utah office (October 1980).  Was it because my current supervisor wanted to pass my presence to another office?  Or did I truly earn it?

Never mind whatever the reason, more opportunities came into my future.

Steve was friendly toward me during our time as co-workers (1978 – 1980).  He invited me to his home for a visit one last evening before my departure to Utah.  His home was a curious scene that evening.  We initially sat separate from each other – he motioned me to his sofa and he took his easy chair across from me.  Steve later moved from his seat to the sofa, then gradually moved closer to me on the sofa – eventually touching close.  I made no responce.  Steve apologised to me.  He told me that he is gay and that gossip at work is that I am gay; Steve said that he wanted to share this last evening with me.  I told Steve that I am not a male homosexual.  I could not tell Steve the whole truth – that I am a female transsexual (M-F), that I do not have the body parts that would please him (breasts up top and rudimentary female anatomy below), nor is he part of my sexual attraction (I am not attracted to male homosexuals).  I assured Steve that our evening would remain private.

My transition progressed at my new assignment and location; this continued my ‘Victor / Victoria’ circumstance – a female pretending to be a male, a woman living as a man.  Employment security diminished through the course at least for one of two supervisors and other agency management; they, too, saw my female identification on the SSA discrepancy list and would act differently.

Bob, the first supervisor, disguised a ‘date’ as an invitation to me for dinner and an evening at his home (December 1980) similar as Steve’s invitation.  Who did he think I was:  female (according to my SSA file) or male (as I presented myself)?  Did he think I was Lesbian living as a male?  Or Gay (did that false gossip follow me)?  What were his true expectations and intentions?  These questions remain un-answered unless and until Bob sees this site and adds his comment.

Blanche, the second supervisor, proved dangerous to my livelihood.  She called me to her office one day (1983); she assuredly told me that she knows that I am a female working there as a male and she ‘will not have that’.  She directly threatened to fire me because I am a sex change.  She exposed my personal information throughout the office.  I began hearing those familiar ‘She’s a he’ whispers from several people; I heard far worse words from many others though no one ever had the indecency to actually speak them to my face.(1981 xx xx) Work ID Photographs

Look at my pictures (1981 and 1985).  You see me changing from male (1981) to female (1985).  Yet Blanche and Forest Service management were firing me as a female-to-male transsexual.  They had no perspective of direction.  They certainly saw me as female in their midst, no longer ‘male’ as I once was.  Did they somehow expect that I would change back to ‘male’?  Sorry for this cliche’.  Did they not have a clue?  Okay, this was 1983, not 2015.  I was the only transsexual in Utah at that time (insofar as that was what my counsellor told me in 1983).

(Up-date –  April 2016:  I met with a counsellor three times here at home – Phoenix – during 2015.  He mentioned to me that he recalled hearing about a M-F transsexual at Utah during 1983 to 1985.  I told him that perhaps the other person and I should find each other and create a fan club.  I have had months to think this through, do my own table-tapping, and now it seems quite likely that I was that one – that only.  Is there anyone in cyberland who can substantiate that you are that other?  Let’s find a way to meet and share notes.)

(1985 08 xx) Pima CC ID - (1988 xx xx) DES ID

I look back at Blanche’s confrontation.  Blanche said to me something such as, ‘I know you are a female. We can’t have you working here as a male.’.  I feared her and her threat.  It was real; my responce failed to match her threat.  Instead, I should have arrived at work the next day as Sharon, walked directly to her at her office, and told her, ‘Here I am. I will be from now on working as who I am – as Sharon – as female.  You lost your reason to fire me.  Now what are you going to do?’  My full change was valid:  SSA recorded me as female (1978), my state legally affirmed me female (1980), and my operations finalised my female anatomy (1982, 1983).  People at work already suspected my female status through cruel gossip; working there as Sharon would have changed that gossip in short order.  Why was I waiting?

Yes, I can fairly write now that in my present mind that is the opportunity that I should have taken in 1983.  But I was afraid in 1983.  Fear.  Regret as well; regret nowadays that I could have done transition better.  That is a lesson learned.

Terry was my co-worker at Utah (1981 – 1985) – about 20 years older than me.  I was her dutifull ‘male’ friend:  helping her move from one apartment to another, setting up her washer and dryer connections, re-arranging her furniture when she asked.  Even when she had a serious boyfriend, she asked me for help first.  She also confided personal information to me that no woman ever had done before and only since presenting as female.  Did my feminised presence allow her subconscious to perceive me as another female?

Terry saw my devolving physical changes every day for four years yet apparently did not fully perceive them until we chatted at her home one evening after work (1985).  It was just another visit.  We sat at her kitchen table talking and drinking coffee same as dozens of previous times.  She suddenly stopt mid-sentence and asked why I had no facial hair, then looked at my arms and hands and asked why I had no body hair.  I fumbled for words that failed her because I had not prepared myself to provide an answer to such questions.  She was angry, hurt, frustrated with my denying her very accurate observation considering Terry confided her many intimate thoughts to me.

(2007 06 08) OPM Reassignment Letter

I owed my honesty to Terry in return.  I’m sorry, Terry, that I could not tell you because I feared you might let it slip at work though that hardly mattered considering that Blanche already initiated firing me.

Betty was among the few other supporters at work as my employer was taking action to fire me as a sex change in retaliation for my whistle-blower action (1983); Betty did not know the full truth.  Thank you, Betty.  I have your framed gift placed prominently at my home.

The administrative process persisted two years; I eventually resigned (1985). I filed as Sharon / female through the Un-employment Insurance process; UI agreed that my employer conducted six years of an ‘intolerable work environment’ against me.

*

I hope others reading this who have not yet begun their transition learn that they need to determine their own time to begin.  Do not fear it and do not allow others to intimidate you from it.  Each element of your life will be different.  My transition was piecemeal – that’s what worked for me.  I transitioned elements of my life at different times – work, school, second jobs, volunteering, social life, etc.  Good counselling will support your effort to help you make good decisions while minimising your regrets.

I completed my transitioning life toward female by 1985 yet I could not out myself during my residence at Utah.  I lived with the fear that my life would become more complicated if anyone was less than supportive.

*

I began learning that presentation was part of my transition.  I could wear the exact same uni-sex female attire and present myself differently – some people perceived me as male while others perceived me as female.  A simple change of hair style and mannerisms took me from male to female; a touch of make-up added to my female presence.

My primary personal fear came to be whether I passed well as female.  I made small steps at this endeavour as I gradually transitioned my life from male to female.

I considered that ‘Passing My ‘Passing’ Test’ would be when I otherwise made no extra effort presenting myself (even a male self) and others naturally perceived me as female.  I clearly ‘Passed My ‘Passing’ Test’ by early 1985, yet my self-confidence was lacking; it would all finally come together by June 1985.

The location where I was co-employed by the Wasatch-Cache National Forest during my last year while presenting as a male was at a large, multi-story commercial building.  Same as my prior locations, I again made myself known to my new co-workers to walk up and down the stairs as exercise during break and lunch so that my departure from my immediate work area and floor appeared routine.  I feared raising suspicions with my new male co-workers if they observed me using only the stalls at the facilities near our area.

It happened when I was at a distant men’s restroom on another floor.  I finished my business and was washing my hands.  A man entered, gazed at me, made a puzzled look, and asked if he had the men’s room or not.  I dug down deep for the best possible male falsetto I could muster and confirmed that, ‘Yes, this is the men’s room’.

The lesson to me that day at that time was that there I was doing my best to appear and present as a male at work and this stranger saw me as female without me trying to present as female.  He saw what I was wearing though he may not have comprehended my attire was female jeans, sweater vest, and shoes.  He saw that I had no facial or arm hair.  Hiding my ‘C’ girls under extra T-shirts under my over-sized male office shirt was getting difficult.  It’s no wonder that man at the men’s room that day perceived me as female and not as male.

That rest room confrontation brought me to ponder how others at my office also truly perceived of my appearance as not quite male, and persisted their whispers of ‘He’s a she’ and ‘She’s a he’.

*

() 'Viktor und Viktoria' Poster sYZkkY5‘Crazy world’.

Indeed!

I truly did live an actual ‘Victor / Victoria’ existence.  There I was – a female presenting as a male who was living as a woman pretending to be a man – in a manner expressed in that popular Julie Andrews / Robert Preston / James Garner / Lesley Anne Warren movie of that time.

Sharon / female is my real me while ‘He’s a phony’ was what I presented at work.  I submit to you, Dear Reader, that my real life was far more interesting – obviously true to life – than their fictional story.

(Up-date:  29 Apr 17)

Danke!  Thank you, Cristina S., for the ‘Viktor und Viktori’ poster.

Cool!

*