From my observation, and anecdotally, when people leave, they tend to stay gone. They give little or nothing back in spite of the support that they received from the community. What is lost is the fact that moving forward as a community takes every voice that we can muster.
It also doesn’t help our public perception. What tends to stick in people’s minds are the folks who are in trouble and have to do illegal things like sex work to survive or Caitlyn Jenner. Both are distortions of the reality. There are a number of trans folks who are doing OK. Clearly not as many as there should be, but the world seems to cling to the sensational, regardless of how it may leave a lot to be desired statistically.
I retired nearly 6 years ago and moved to the desert. I hold offices in 5 organizations and am a member of 3 others. I have no desire to put the effort into legally changing my name, but DeeAnn is the person of record in all cases. Being visible and being part of the community has value to me, so that’s why I do what I do.
I agree with you completely about haste. I have often reminded folks that it is not a sprint. It is a marathon. Further, some things just need time to settle in. Like tea, it needs to steep. I also remind people to periodically stop and look at what has been accomplished. It can be 3 months, 6 months or whatever. When we’re in the middle of “stuff” it is hard to get a sense of the progress that has been made. Similarly, with our kids, we don’t notice their day to day growth. However, it becomes very obvious to someone how hasn’t seen them for a while. Having a sense of progress fuels us.
I appreciate your wisdom and I think others will also…