Well, that’s one more potentially uncomfortable conversation done. Today, I told my primary care physician that I was a trans woman, and that in the coming year I would be transitioning to full time female presentation. She had the usual questions, including whether B had known before her passing. She had, of course, as I have mentioned before. She asked about my surgical plans, if any, and I gave her the same response I wrote in my coming out letter to my friends. I’d like to, but it seems impractical and unlikely.
I told her that sometime in the first quarter of this year I intended to start HRT, and that of course I would keep her apprised of that. She asked if I had a doctor for that, and I told her I had a referral, from the transgender community, to a doctor who was supposedly very knowledgeable and supportive.
I found out that she already is treating one trans woman, and has no trouble continuing treating me. Her other trans patient was already fully transitioned before coming to her practice. I pointed out that there would be some logistical issues to be dealt with in her office, since I would present female in the future. I needed to go back this week for a regular (fasting) blood draw, and indicated my desire to do so as the woman I am. Then I asked how much time she needed to prepare the staff for the transition.
She told me she would do it this afternoon, and that if I wanted to come in the morning tomorrow for the blood work, that would present no problem. She asked how I wanted to be referred to. I told her that my preferred name was Janet, and the staff could either call me Janet, or Ms. Logan, which ever they were more comfortable with. I also stressed the importance of not using my male name, or male honorifics, when I was presenting female, or for that matter, using any female references in paperwork to my HMO. Like so many other plans, my HMO outright refuses to pay for anything they can lay off to transgender treatment.
I also pointed out that I would be at risk of unemployment if the fact of my transition became known to my employer, which could conceivably happen if the HMO found out. Like a lot of people I know, she thought it would be illegal to fire me for what is essentially a medical condition. I explained the current state of the law to her, and that even if the hoped for inclusive ENDA was to pass, it wouldn’t help me.
This is working out so easy, it make me ashamed I waited so long to do it. Of course, there is still the employment bridge to cross, and wow, is that a big one. Someday, I will have to face that one too, but I hope to postpone that until post legal name change.
I expect the day I do to be the last day I work for that small company, no matter what happens in the future with the ENDA. The company is small enough that it would be exempt under the ENDA as proposed to date.
The current version of the bill under consideration in Congress would prohibit private employers with more than 15 employees from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
The company I work for has 7 employees. I really never have understood why it is deemed acceptable for companies under a certain size to discriminate, but there it is.