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LaurenA

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<Stream of thought>

I'm caught in a quandary.  I quit my job last March because of the Covid virus.  I liked the job and the people I worked with.  The pay wasn't great but then it was all unneeded extra income.  My job gave me the structure and stability that I needed.

Today I received an email from my boss asking me if I was on the list for the vaccine because he really wanted me back.  He said they were going to have a banner year.  Fine so far until you mix in that during my Covid isolation I discovered with my councilor that I was trans.  Since then I have been exploring my feminine side and getting more comfortable with it.

Here's the rub.  I worked in a very small factory run by republicans and has no policy at all regarding gender.  If I go back to work it will have to be as a male.  It will also mean I will have to put any plans on noticeable transformation aside.  I have to decide between being who I have accepted I am or working for the psychological benefits it gives me.  I want my cake and eat it too.

The only way I've thought of is to only be me when I'm home and playing the male gender at work.  I should be able to go forward on electrolysis but hormone will have to be put on hold or not done at all.  Not to mention any forms of surgery.

I have been comfortably retired and don't need the job.  But it's a decision between doing one thing to enhance my well-being versus another.  I have to ask myself which would do more for me.  Since I so recently discovered my true gender I have far less evidence to base my decision on.  I guess I could go back to work and put off making and permanent decision.  Then I think, I'm almost 71, I don't have that much time left to me to be me and I shouldn't waste any of it.

</Stream of thought>

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Whichever way you choose, I hope it goes well. I would have a very difficult time working for someone else even if they fully accepted and supported me. 

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What I'm afraid of is that this is the only job I could get.  At 71 they aren't sending you offers.

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Jackie C.

I'd say follow your dreams, but of course I'd say that. That's how my brain works. More practically, I'd ask, "Is the extra money worth the chunk it's going to take out of your life?" I'd probably also ask, "How long were you planning on keeping this job anyway."

 

I might also ask, "So, what IS this job?" If it was something I loved... maybe. Probably not, but maybe. I see that you identify as bigender though, and most of the other bigender people I know are perfectly content with just expressing their female side during the evening and on weekends.

 

I couldn't do that, but I don't identify as bigender. How do you think spending your time in this job slot is going to affect your mental health? Is evenings and weekends going to be enough? Do you even want to start down the road of HRT? If you're just getting electrolysis, who's going to notice? If you're planning on growing breasts (or getting implants), well that's a different kettle of fish isn't it?

 

Hugs!

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If its to a job you need for the financial consideration then follow your heart and move forward with your transition.  Don't spend time doing things you don't really want to do.  Life is short. 

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I might venture the opinion that despite being republicans if the folks you worked with liked you that may not change after transition.  I have certainly found that to be the case.  You know that situation better than any of us.  Perhaps you might ask yourself if it is the fear of not getting the job or the fear of transition that is holding you back.  In my case i know it was a combination.  I'm glad i made the decision i did but we are all in different worlds.

 

Hugs,

 

Charlize

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First of all I want to thank everybody for all of the wonderful advice.  It gave me a lot of things to think about.  I realized that I have about 2 months before I have to make a final decision.  Also that if I decide to go back to work I can quit any time I find it's detrimental to my well being.

So here's my plan...  After getting vaccinated (twice) I'm going to go back to work for a max of 4 years.  I'm going to open a savings account tagged Lauren and place all of my earnings into it.  I figure by the time I quit I'll have enough money in the account to cover whatever surgery I might want.  I think that having a very specific date and goal in mind along with being myself at home will be enough to keep me sane for that time.  I can always change my mind at some point.  It's not like I have to sign a long term contract.

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4 hours ago, LaurenA said:

m going to open a savings account tagged Lauren and place all of my earnings into it.  I figure by the time I quit I'll have enough money in the account to cover whatever surgery I might want. 

I'm 70 myself didn't want to wait any longer to start HRT. But I am MtF, and the idea of having to hide myself would bother me.

But It looks like you have a plan.  And having the funds for surgeries would be nice.

Hope it works out for you.

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On 1/20/2021 at 9:30 AM, LaurenA said:

I have to decide between being who I have accepted I am or working for the psychological benefits it gives me. 

I am in a very similar situation, Lauren, so I understand the complexity of your situation.  I do enjoy certain aspects of my job and I can fully retire anytime I like, but there are some fringe benefits that I would lose.  Its a balance of the scales.
Similar to you I have a window to manage a final decision and no deadline when to quit .. so having that "authority" to make our own personal decision is empowering.  I think you are on the right path, and obviously you can change that timeline any time you want. 
Wishing you all the best❣️
 

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Just some ideas...

 

If there is sex/gender discrimination legislation in place (I don't know enough about your country/state to know) then your gender identification should not matter and they could be breaking the law if they made it so. I see no reason why you shouldn't pursue your return to work if they want you and you want to work.

 

If they want you, it is surely your skills and the economic value to the company that is why they've asked you back. Why would your gender status change this?

 

If you do not need to work (financially) then it seems to me that you hold all the cards. I'm in a not far dissimilar situation but in the UK and with considerable publicity around gender rights. I don't need to work (financially), but I enjoy my job. I'm also genderfluid/bigender and spend part of my time as Niamh, the rest as a man. I may start HRT or not, but whether or not I would would not be influenced by my work situation. I decided to tell my employer and key colleagues at work on the basis that if anyone had an issue or caused problems I could either:

 

Leave, because I didn't need the money

 

or

 

Take legal action if I wanted to stay, primarily to make a precedent for anyone who DID need the money.

 

It seems that if your colleagues are unable to recognise your value as a productive member of their team, just because you may present as a woman sometimes, are the really people you want to work with.

 

So far I haven't encountered a single person at work who has been negative or derogatory about my life choice, but I realise my role, my employer and the country in which I live may be a very different environment to yours.

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Alas in my state the law says they can fire you for no reason at all.  There are laws for sex and race discrimination but none for gender.  My plan is to get my job back and spend a few months showing them what I'm worth again.  During that time I'll try to very gently sound management out on the issue.  Still not sure how I'm going to do that.  I'll base my decision then on what I find out.  Sort of a bootstrapping operation.

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2beBreanna
1 hour ago, LaurenA said:

Alas in my state the law says they can fire you for no reason at all.  There are laws for sex and race discrimination but none for gender.  My plan is to get my job back and spend a few months showing them what I'm worth again.  During that time I'll try to very gently sound management out on the issue.  Still not sure how I'm going to do that.  I'll base my decision then on what I find out.  Sort of a bootstrapping operation.

I agree with Niamh. If they came looking for you they already value you.  Everyone needs to get over this putting everyone on each side is the exact same.  Both sides of the aisle have good and bad.  Both sides have people who hate and others that accept.  

 

I am working to gently show more and more femininity at work.  I keep my nails longer and had a translucent polish on them.  I wear lots of pink and purple shirts but in men's styles.  These small things help me enough for now.  I get a few comments from people about small things but nothing that is a big deal. 

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11 hours ago, LaurenA said:

There are laws for sex and race discrimination but none for gender. 

As far as federal regulations go this is changing.  The Biden administration has instructed those involved with this to review the rules and to make sure gender is on the list.  The prior administration had thinly interpreted the law to be sex and not gender, and only for employment.  

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I have my fingers crossed but from what I've read so far the Senate Republicans are already trying to gum up the works.

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There are plenty of angles to look at.  Taking the "if they discriminate against me I could take legal action" track is valid if you are more of an activist and don't mind spending that emotional energy.  You could help others that way but take a toll on yourself.

Many good points already made on weighing financial vs personal goals.

You may also look at this as a easy opportunity to come out that is pretty risk free AND leave open the legal side if you want.  Ask for a meeting to discuss coming back and their reemployment offer.  Go to the meeting and say- I would love to take the offer, however, I have some concerns. Tell them your transitioning or bigender or however you want to express that side of you. You would like to know what their policy is about workplace discrimination around that and how they will handle and HR issues if they were to arise. If they withdraw the offer then you have your answer. You could pursue legal if you wanted. However, you may find they value your work more than any issue with trans and you just broke the ice with coming out.

 

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I'm definitely not the activist type and right now the way the law here stands I don't think I have a legal leg to stand on.  I'm also so near the start of understanding my transgender self that being out in public is a ways down the road for me.  I've tried to keep all those factors in mind as I made my plan.  At this point I think it will work and if at any time earlier than my goal I can approach management about it and see where it goes.

I remember reading in another thread of a document designed to help HR departments create a non-descrimination policy.  I could always leave one on the HR person's desk.

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