Getting misgendered

  • Creator
    Topic
  • #96468
    Alexis Moon
    Participant

    Well, it was bound to happen…I’ve only recently started going out in broad daylight as myself (i.e. Lexi). The first attempt was, in my mind, very successful! So feeling emboldened, the next weekend I set out to run some errands en femme, including a thrift store stop to pick up a spring jacket. Since I was wearing a mask, I figured just a little concealer around the eyes and mascara would be enough makeup, but perhaps I’m getting overconfident.

    Anyway, the cashier at one point referred to me as “sir.” It happened so fast I didn’t quite realize it at first! Now, I should be clear, I was wearing tight-fitting black skinny jeans and my new boots with 3″ heels (not too tall, I think) my long brown wig, and like I said, eye makeup. Now, I’m not naive enough to believe that I wouldn’t be clocked as male, but what surprised me (on further reflection) was, what made this person think, dressed like I was, that I wanted to be referred to as “sir?” I get it, I’m sure it’s tricky for people these days, but I feel pretty strongly that my look wasn’t androgynous. It could’ve been more over-the-top femme, but I didn’t want to stand out on a Saturday morning! But maybe that’s what it takes to let people know who we are…

    Anyway, I’m sure it won’t be the last time!  And just to put a pin in it, I got in my car, put on lipstick and took a few selfies. Made me feel loads better!

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    Replies
    • #99506

       

      hi Lexi, I had it happen in a store also and it made me mad as hell, I was clearly a woman I have breast and wearing a dress thigh high boots, make up, my hair very feminine ,my nails long and red and a mask.

      So the next time it happens I will correct the person, I do find it happens at drive thru restaurants, so I try to talk more feminine at the speaker.

      love and huggs

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #96493
      Michelle Larsen
      AMBASSADOR

      Alexis, yep, it happens, and probably will in the future. So may react because that is just how they think, albeit not maliciously. If they do not know anyone who is transgender, then they probably don’t have a good reference as to what to expect. Here is something interesting I have noticed too. When I use a credit card, the name pops up on the screen. And I think they use that as a gauge on how to interact with the customer, and as a way to fight fraud…. Regardless, I suspect being misgendered will occur less and less as time goes on. Michelle

      • #99469

        Hey Michelle – yeah, I paid cash, so I can’t blame the credit card! Oh well, I’m sure it’s just as confusing for cis people. To give him the benefit of the doubt, I can see where maybe he wasn’t entirely convinced calling me “sir” was the right move. I mean, if there’s confusion (and being honest, I can see why there was), maybe calling me “ma’am” would’ve been the right move? I mean, I think of myself as female, but it’s probably a bit much to expect everyone to just “know” that based on what I’m wearing…

      • #96504
        DeeAnn Hopings
        AMBASSADOR

        Yes and no…

        A few years back I got a credit card in DeeAnn’s name specifically to avoid double takes. On one hand that worked out like I thought, but on the other I still get misgendered. It’s like seeing someone in makeup, jewelry, heels, boobs and skirts has no meaning. Odd…

        I agree that experience is significant. Brynn Tannehill says in her book that while 80% of the population knows at least one gay person, only about 16% know a trans person. Given that we are only about 0.6% of the population, it is an uphill struggle…

        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #96476
      DeeAnn Hopings
      AMBASSADOR

      Over the past 5 years, when I have been misgendered, probably at least 80% it is by a Latinx person. I’m guessing that religion comes into play.

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