Friday, 19 August 2011
Giving a little back
It is just over a week since 'The Times' published an article about my transition by their chief law correspondent, Frances Gibb. I have had quite a number of e-mails congratulating me on my bravery (not really - just what had to be done), openness (yes, what a relief) and appearence (yep, I like it too, but a lot of that is down to Dr Bart van de Ven's skill). These have been lovely to get.
Even better, though, have been a small number of e-mails from other transgender folk in the legal world, more than I would have thought.
Best of all, was an e-mail from a legal executive in a provincial law firm who e-mailed me to say that they have been working towards transition for some time and are about 6 months away from needing to speak to their partner (= department manager, for you non-legal folk). The Legal Exec had been worrying about what the reaction would be and how to handle the meeting.
'The Times' article about me became the topic of discussion for the day in their department last Thursday and the partner expressed a number of very positive sentiments about what I had done. So the Legal Exec is now feeling rather happier about approaching the partner early next year. Lovely to have done some good, remotely.
I see also that I have had positive comment in a number of TG and legal discussion forums on the web.
I have also been asked to speak to several law firms on TG issues. In each case their employer clients have not had to handle a worker transitioning, but given time and numbers, it will come up before too long, and the employer (if sensible) will go to their law firm for advice. Now I get the opportunity to show that we TG folk still have the usual number of heads, still have a sense of humour, and treatment of us need not just be focussed on which toilet we should use....
On a more personal level, I volunteer on a couple of Britain's wonderful heritage steam railways and this Sunday will be my first day working a signal box in a skirt! I have had some women's railway uniform tailored based on that supplied to the ladies who kept Britain's railways running during World War 2 when the men were away fighting. Heritage railways are a bit of a male preserve, so it will be interesting to see what (if any) reaction there is....wish me well.
Robin Moira White