Author Topic: Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace  (Read 311 times)

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Offline Raina Selone

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Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace
« on: July 22, 2018, 06:29:24 am »
So my boyfriend says that I'm a trailblazer for doing this, but wanted to get all of your thoughts on this.

When I had my first endo date set, I told our HR department that I would be transitioning at the workplace, from male to female. Living in Indiana, she told me all I had to do was let her know when I wanted to switch facilities (Locker room, bathroom, etc),a nd she'd make it happen. Six months of being on hormones later, I have my name legally changed from James to Raina. It was a very big day for me, and I went up to her and told her that I wanted to switch facilities. She worked with me and I now have my own locker in the women's locker room (THe two women we have on my shift both are of the "We don't care. A girl's a girl." mindset, unlike the guys ::) )

Management has been stellar in their support. My name on the forklift access system has been changed, my timecard name has been changed, everyone calls me by Raina now (After only a week or two!), and the only thing left to get changed is my access credentials for the inventory management system.

My coworkers, though, are of a somewhat different story. For the most part, nobody's said or done anything to me *directly*, but I'm fairly certain that they're talking behind my back (Which I don't care about so long as I don't hear about it). The vast majority of the atmosphere is a ghetto prison culture, and even before I transitioned I was getting all sorts of harassment. Someone wrote "Fag" on my locker. Someone else put a mask (The kind you wear when you're sick at the hospital) on my locker with "Tampon" written on it. I've reported every single incident when it happened, but unfortunately management can't do anything about it without "undeniable proof". But I digress.

Have any others of us TIP'd? What has been your experience?

Offline Maybebaby56

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Re: Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2018, 07:21:14 am »
I did, and I have to admit it went far better than I could have imagined.  I work for the DoD, land of Rules and Regulations, and by God, they follow them.  That definitely worked to my advantage.

I had FFS and had filed paperwork for a name change, so management knew something was up but they could not directly ask me. An overheard phone call from my FFS surgeon by a co-worker set things in motion. The EEO people set up a meeting with management, we agreed upon a course of action.

The following Friday, a memo was released to the Department (about 180 people) informing them of my name change, that I would be using the female restrooms, and reminding them I was still a valued member of the Department.  Any questions were to be directed to the Department head.  They totally had my back.

On Monday I came to work as Terri (it helped that my male name was Terry). Everyone was either supportive or didn't bat an eye.  Management seemed relieved that the situation was resolved. I think many people were starting connect the dots before my official coming out, so it wasn't a total surprise. In fact, it was kind of surreal that there was almost no change at all in anyone's behavior. No funny looks, no smirks, no stares, and definitely no hazing or harassment. If there was any talking behind my back I never got wind of it.

I had been terrified of being shunned or isolated at work, or even having to quit my job, and none of my fears came to pass. I think everyone just wanted to know what the "correct" course of action was regarding my transition, and once the memo came out it was business as usual. 

For me, there was a lesson here that transition at work is not just about yourself.  You have to help others help you. People just want to know what is expected of them.  Of course, there is always the possibility there will be haters, but most people are decent.

With kindness,

Terri
"How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives" - Annie Dillard

Offline Drexy/Drex

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Re: Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2018, 07:31:31 am »
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Offline Bari Jo

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Re: Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2018, 08:55:34 am »
I am in process of transitioning in place.  Mgmt and HR was notified months ago, and beyond notifying upper mgmt that this is happening, not much has gone on.  They are working on my time table.  HR did order me new name badges which I have pinned to my wall.  I dress femme every day, mostly more femme than 90% of the girls in office.  I agree people are respectful, and mostly just want to know how to treat me.  My name change is also easy as it sounds just like my old name. In October the official name change and email will go out.  I do not anticipate any issues.  I work at the most lgbt friendly company on the planet though, many years running:)

Bari Jo
you know how far the universe extends outward? i think i go inside just as deep.

10/11/18 - out to the whole world.  100% friends and family support.
11/6/17 - came out to sister, best day of my life
9/5/17 - formal diagnosis and stopping DIY in favor if prescribed HRT
6/18/17 - decided to stop fighting the trans beast, back on DIY.
Too many ups and downs, DIY, purges of self inbetween dates.
Age 10 - suppression and denial began
Age 8 - knew I was different

Offline TonyaW

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Re: Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2018, 09:20:33 am »
I did this almost one year ago.  Posted about it some in a the thread about CVS apologizing for that AZ pharmacist that refused to fill a prescription for a transwoman. That's all relevant to me because I'm a transwoman, a pharmacist and a CVS employee. 

Official policy is very trans friendly. It says that basically all I needed to do was tell my  manager and they were then to take the lead on telling everyone else, so that part was really easy.  Policy also says I can use which ever restroom I choose. Since ours are pretty much single occupancy with locks on the door, there have been no issues there.

My dad mostly and my mom sometimes had always called me by my initials,  TJ, so I thought it'd make it a bit easier for the people at work by going by that at first, especially since I didn't legalize Tonya until March of this year.  There were a few slip ups on my name at first and occasionally after that. Considering that my full name was still all over everything official that's understandable. Only time it sort of bothered me was when someone that started working there after I came out and I was introduced to as TJ used my male name once.

Once I was able to change my name in the computer I don't recall anyone using anything but TJ and some are starting to use Tonya also.  Took a little longer to get it changed everywhere than I would have liked, but otherwise no problems doing it.
Pronouns took a while longer but they're doing great now.

I've had no negative reactions from anyone  I work with. I was mildly worried about one guy when I came out, he's pretty right wing, but doesn't go there at work.

I don't work in  retail anymore so my only interaction with people outside the company is on the phone.  I've had some one say once "YOUR name is Tonya?" and have had others ask twice and for spelling to be sure they heard me right. 

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Offline kaitylynn

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Re: Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace
« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2018, 09:43:34 am »
This is the route I chose, nothing wrong with it and I am CERTAIN that peops have talked about things without me being present...but I decided to not care about that.  I want a very similar route.  Told my boss and together we approached HR.  Started HRT and everyone shifted to calling me Kat without even blinking twice.  No issue there.  Still did not tell them what was up, but I know the grapevine and I knew they knew.  Totally polite in the beginning and after they realized that I am still a nice person to hang out with...we all went back to hanging out.  People are going to talk, that is our nature.  It has been my experience that it is a phase, gossip, and then you simply "become you" in their eyes.

Once my name change went through, it was treated like any other woman changing their name (happens a lot, marriage and divorce).  The gender change was a little more hectic, but not at the company level.  External things like insurance and SS.  Hopefully it goes as smoothly for you, which it should as it is not actually a big deal paperwork wise.

My work takes me in to peoples homes, multiple clients a day.  When I legally changed everything I was at a year HRT.  A lot had changed, but a lot had not.  Short hair, cannot really wear makeup...it was confusing for some customers.  I was being introduced as Katherine, but had a distinctly male look about me and I knew it.  Just stayed focused on "this is not a fixed point and it too shall pass" while getting my job done.  Over the next year it became easier to pass as me, a girl and my looks sort of grew into my name.  Now no one really questions.  This seemed to shift at the office as well.  People started to see Katherine walking through and the old me slowly faded into the past.  Just takes a little time is all :)

The main thing, you are doing it!
Katherine Lynn M.

You’ve got a light that always guides you.
You speak of hope and change as something good.
Live your truth and know you’re not alone.

The restart - 20-Oct-2015
Legal name and gender change affirmed - 27-Sep-2016
Breast Augmentation (Dr. Gupta) - 27-Aug-2018

Offline Tommi

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Re: Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2018, 11:39:52 am »
I did this almost one year ago.  Posted about it some in a the thread about CVS apologizing for that AZ pharmacist that refused to fill a prescription for a transwoman. That's all relevant to me because I'm a transwoman, a pharmacist and a CVS employee. 

Official policy is very trans friendly. It says that basically all I needed to do was tell my  manager and they were then to take the lead on telling everyone else, so that part was really easy.  Policy also says I can use which ever restroom I choose. Since ours are pretty much single occupancy with locks on the door, there have been no issues there.

My dad mostly and my mom sometimes had always called me by my initials,  TJ, so I thought it'd make it a bit easier for the people at work by going by that at first, especially since I didn't legalize Tonya until March of this year.  There were a few slip ups on my name at first and occasionally after that. Considering that my full name was still all over everything official that's understandable. Only time it sort of bothered me was when someone that started working there after I came out and I was introduced to as TJ used my male name once.

Once I was able to change my name in the computer I don't recall anyone using anything but TJ and some are starting to use Tonya also.  Took a little longer to get it changed everywhere than I would have liked, but otherwise no problems doing it.
Pronouns took a while longer but they're doing great now.

I've had no negative reactions from anyone  I work with. I was mildly worried about one guy when I came out, he's pretty right wing, but doesn't go there at work.

I don't work in  retail anymore so my only interaction with people outside the company is on the phone.  I've had some one say once "YOUR name is Tonya?" and have had others ask twice and for spelling to be sure they heard me right. 

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Tonya, I alaonwork at CVS. It all looked good on paper, but I sit and work with the facilities team. I was worried how they would take it. And people were the same. Either supportive, or just didn't care. So much of my transitioning has been this way. I help out site managers around the country, and the only... Bad?... Thing was someone in another state calling and going "wanna hear something funny? Every one told me you were a girl" "I am a woman, yes" Then the profuse apologies. Guess I need to work more on my voice!

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Offline Donica

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Re: Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace
« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2018, 01:31:25 pm »
Just a little background about my work, it's more of a small close family environment with less than 10 employees. The owner and his wife run the front office and we have been friends for many years.

Two weeks ago, I came out to the owner (my boss). He was more than accepting, telling me he would stand behind me unconditionally. We then held a meeting were I came out as Donica to the rest of the employees.

Much to my surprise, the owner's wife told me she was proud of me for this and that she would stand behind me as well. The rest of the employees seem to take very well, even asking a few questions, showing curiosity about my transitioning. After the meeting one of them had alot of questions and so far was the first and only one to call me by my new name and use the proper pronouns.

It's been two weeks and the rest of the employees are still calling me by my old name. I understand this is going to take some time and that's fine. All in all, I think it went well. After all, my old name is short for my new name.

Rebirth June 9, 2017. Started HRT August 22, 2017. Came out June 16, 2018, Full time July 9, 2018.
Started FHR August 9, 2018, Started VFT September 19, 2018, Name and Gender change October 19. 2018.

Offline TonyaW

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Re: Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace
« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2018, 02:45:33 pm »
Tonya, I alaonwork at CVS. It all looked good on paper, but I sit and work with the facilities team. I was worried how they would take it. And people were the same. Either supportive, or just didn't care. So much of my transitioning has been this way. I help out site managers around the country, and the only... Bad?... Thing was someone in another state calling and going "wanna hear something funny? Every one told me you were a girl" "I am a woman, yes" Then the profuse apologies. Guess I need to work more on my voice!

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Other than them using my new name, it was business as usual.  No one made a fuss.  A few questions now and then but nothing out of bounds or in depth. 

I think they mostly don't care what I am as long as I'm doing my job.  I had been wearing women's clothes pretty exclusively for 4 or 5 months even before I started HRT in Feb of last year, which was 5 months before I came out at work. Went for the more androgynous stuff at that time but definitely was female clothing. 
If anyone noticed, they didn't care enough to say anything to me. 

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Offline Raina Selone

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Re: Transitioning In Place (TIP) at the workplace
« Reply #9 on: July 24, 2018, 04:58:50 am »
Thank you all so much for your input. It means a lot to me!

I've actually started joking around with the guys when I do something better than them. One of my coworkers - someone I have a TON of respect for - was having trouble removing the retainer for his battery on his forklift. I came over and grabbed the pry bara nd got it off for him. Then I said, "Come on, man. Don't let a *GIRL* outdo you!" He just laughed, but since then? He's actually started calling me Raina.

I was so freaking afraid that I'd get hazed or dirty looks or whatever.....but mostly, it has all been exactly the same. Well, other than the occasional look from a coworker who seems disgusted that I'm "Getting away with this", but that guy's a total....well, only guys have it. :P

So yeah. Very positive experience for me!

Though I may be losing my job because a coworker decided to do something unsafe. Hope I don't, though....

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