Friday, September 21, 2018

Friend's Friday - Advice Request

Rhonda has many social interactions and does get about. I try and live my advice and "ESCAPE" whenever the opportunity avails itself.  I love music (classical and contemporary), dinner parties and social/business groups. There are several LGBT groups where there is no question as to my perceived presentation and I am never trying to deceive. My attitude, "be the best I can be" and let the observations fall where they may.    

I also belong to several networking business and women's groups. Recently I attended a large woman's business forum,  my local Chamber of Commerce, and seemed to be able to blend easily. I requested information on joining the Chamber and received an invitation plus information packet. 

I have worked in both small and large offices as female (8 years) and every day interacted with both office mates, clients and donors. There I planned small and large events and spoke/traveled representing my employer.    
The Palm Beach Woman's Forum '18
Recently, I have been working with an associate from another woman's group and yesterday we did a sales presentation to the CEO of a local non-profit. We proposed being consultants for their charity event, providing donor software utilization, and offering diversity training. There was a 45 minute meeting and an hour and a half lunch. The opportunity is still pending and looks promising. 
I am not full-time as a female and am not transitioning, although I do present and interact much of the time as female. In any case the assumption is female and I seldom correct or contradict. 

My question; When you know someone well or there is a business relationship (partnership) developing, how do you discuss/present being transgender? 

Clients need not be given an opportunity to discriminate so have no need to be informed and for employment purposes, only the HR department need be informed. However, developing relationships such as business partners or recurring social interactions do need to be aware. Withholding what will become the the obvious would only lead to future mistrust. "If she did not tell me that, then what else..."   

Several time I have used the "I have not always been female" as above.  So I am looking for advice. I know I have asked this before and again would welcome your comments or a guest post. Thanking you in advance. 



  1. Actually, my initial inclination is to say it is no one's business outside of perhaps an intimate relationship partner. You see, in the "old days," transition actually meant you were expected to live in your new gender in stealth, such that no one was to know. Those were the days when the nomenclature was "transsexual" before "transgender," and it was not really expected as something that you come out as.

    Times have changed.

    But you are still in control of coming out.

    Again, I don't necessarily see the need to come out to business associates as transgender status has no bearing on your ability to do the job.


    The one hitch you mentioned in all this is you are not full-time female. So the question becomes, I think, how much time do you spend in "boy mode" and what is the likelihood that you are to accidentally by happenstance bump into one of these business partners in boy mode?

    Even then, if you decide to disclose, I would be careful. I, thankfully live in a "blue state" that provides wide protection against discrimination on gender identity. I don't know that Florida offers that same protection.

    And remember, once you disclose to one individual in the business community, unfortunately there is nothing to stop that individual from disclosing more widely... perhaps in ways you may not want.

    I'm not advising to disclose or not. Just to give it some hard thought in an environment where you don't necessarily have any legal protection if that disclosure harms you.

    I hope I've at least given you a few things to think about.

  2. Thanks for letting ramble on.

    I want to add that you can come out to whomever you want, friends, family, etc. Just please remember YOU control your own narrative.

    No one else controls your coming out but you.

    1. Thanks Janet - Great points to consider for us all.