What exactly do you mean?

I wish that I could record the reaction on people’s faces when I tell them that I am transitioning, and that my name is (now) Roxy. It is fascinating to watch them process in 3 to 5 seconds my words against:

  • What they think the words transgender and transitioning actually mean
  • Their sense of me, and whether they think they have previously noticed any clues
  • Their world view
  • Their personal values
  • Their personal life experiences
  • Their sense of their own gender
  • Their sense of their own sexuality, irrelevant as it is to gender
  • What they have read in the paper
  • What they have seen on, and in, the news
  • What they have seen on the telly
  • What they have seen at the flicks 
  • The sexuality (again, irrelevant) and gender of their relatives, friends, acquaintances and probably everybody they have ever known
  • What they think they should say
  • What they think they will say
  • How they think I will respond to their response

I feel so blessed (I live in the Northern Rivers … I may as well use that word once in my life) that out of the several hundred people I have said those words to, only three (to my face, anyway) have had a reaction that wasn’t on the spectrum between neutral and overwhelmingly positive. I guess I must have attracted a super bunch of people to my world over the past 14 years. Living in a diverse and largely welcoming region certainly helps too. The vast majority have been extremely positive and above. I have only had three reactions I wish I could forget … not so much their hurtful words, but the expressions on their faces when they expressed them may well stay with me forever.