- Me: She identifies as a girl. So she's a girl.
- Friend: But she's really a
- Me: No stop
1. Ask permission to ask questions. Even if you think you know they are comfortable answering, they may actually not be or maybe not in that setting, and it is just rude and pretty off-putting to not ask. Say, “Hey do you mind if I ask you some things about your transition? I’ve been a little curious – feel free to not answer or say no.”
2. Avoid private and personal questions. Even a so-called open book like me doesn’t want to discuss my sex life with most anyone. If you really want to know about trans men and sex, ask in general terms – i.e. “Are many trans men ‘stone butch’ in bed?” vs. “Are you stone butch in bed?” BIG difference.
3. Do not ask questions that in any way challenge the trans person’s gender identity or expression or could obviously lead to dysphoria. Do NOT, for example, ask if a trans man will grow to be ‘average male height’ or if a trans woman is uncomfortable with the size of her hands. I’ve gotten, “Are you ever going to look your age?” Ouch, honey.
4. Phrase your questions in a way that affirms a trans person’s gender. And avoid anything that defines the trans person in terms of who they once “were.” This is pretty simple, actually. Instead of asking if someone is “still legally female,” ask what the steps are to becoming legally male and if they have completed them.
5. Avoid comparisons to non-trans people and never use the term “real” in distinguishing between transgender and non-transgender people. “Cisgender” or “non-trans” are the only appropriate ways to signify non-trans status.
6. If it is a general question, try Google first. There is a lot of information on the internet and an open trans person should not be a stand-in for your own research.
7. Do not ask what the person’s birth name was. There is absolutely no reason for you to need to know this and it is likely something this person wants distance from. It is a particularly offensive question when phrased, “What is your REAL name.” After all, Sebastian is my real name and has been since I started asking people to use it.
8. Request specific permission to ask questions relating to genitalia, even if you’ve already received general permission to ask other personal questions. “Are you comfortable discussing your genitalia?” Chances are they aren’t. After all, do you want to talk about yours? But some people are and I acknowledge that there is definitely education needed on the topic so I am not opposed entirely to asking questions, as long as you get extra permission first.
9. Be wary of your phrasing. If you aren’t sure how to talk about trans issues, you need to announce that in the beginning. Be open to correction and don’t get defensive if a trans person is offended by something you say. As a heads up, don’t refer to a trans person as their previously-assigned gender – don’t say “when you were a girl” to a trans man for example. A more accurate and safer route is “before you transitioned” or “when you were living as a girl.”
10. Be aware of your setting. These are private conversations. Don’t approach someone at a crowded party or in algebra class and expect them to have a trans chat with you.
11. Be sensitive to the person’s comfort level throughout the conversation. If they’ve given you permission but are obviously growing uncomfortable discussing things, don’t press. Be grateful for the information you’ve gained and change the subject.
12. Respect the person’s privacy. Unless this person stated otherwise, the personal information they gave you is not for you to share with the world.
Always worth a reblog.
Yes. (I am grateful that my first trans friends, in London in the early 80s, did not mind my incredibly personal questions.)
i liked the page for my school’s lgbt* center on facebook and my mom just sent me a message that said
“now all of china knows you’re queer”
please deliver this reply to your mother:
she laughed so hard i think she exploded
A guide to being an ally for friends and family of LGBT*QIA individuals.
Online ebook available [HERE] if you would like to share with others but do not wish to link to your tumblr. (Also, it’s fun to turn the pages.)
Original size 20x24” posters available for educational purposes. Contact me directly for files.
people who think that lgbt characters should be included in children’s media
PEOPLE WHO ONLY WANT LGBT CHARACTERS TO BE IN KIDS SHOWS SO THEY CAN FANGIRL OVER THEM AND FETISHISE HOMOSEXUALITY
Huh, so according to this article, Chic-fil-A has stopped funding anti-gay groups and now is encouraging their employees to “treat every person with honor, dignity and respect—regardless of their beliefs, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender,”
So that happened; I wonder why my dash hasn’t picked the article up yet.
HOLY SMACKDOWN, BATMAN. This guy is awesome, totally gives it to Romney. WHOOP!
I love that it was that one question that made this man decide just who he was going to vote for. This should tell Romney all he needs to know about his beliefs on same-sex marriage. Because I’ll tell you what, that vet? IS AWESOME.
Oh hey, an Upworthy post.
Please signal boost widely!
This is the easiest way to register to vote in the U.S. that I’ve found.
If you don’t have access to a printer or a car (like me), you can go to this website (TurboVote.org - translations in English or in Spanish), fill out your information, and they will mail you the printed forms AND a stamped envelope addressed to your county clerk’s office. All you have to do is pop it in the mail box once you receive them and you’re registered.
You can also sign up to do an absentee ballot/vote by mail so you don’t need to find transportation (or take the time off work) on election day.
It’s definitely legit because I just received and sent off the forms today. I’m not affiliated with the site in any way, I’m just excited to find such a great resource.
Please share the site on facebook, tumblr, twitter, and tell your friends and family about it.
So much respect for that guy. He sat and had a civil conversation with Romney, even while he was being quite offended, and listened to what Romney had to say for himself. Which, unsurprisingly, wasn’t worth much.
My little brother just got back from the store and told me two gay guys were checking him out. I asked him how he felt about it and he said “Flattered, dude. I’m a hot piece of ass.” Crying because I raised him well.