Transgender transition plan

TransFor the first time in years I had a plan for my life. Years and years of introspection and contemplation led me to take a number of significant steps over the last 12 months. I began growing my hair out (again), steeled myself against any inquisitive glances and went out as Vanessa as often as my free time would allow and started paying attention to my gestures and movements. I began making more friends in the transgender community, attended Esprit (and made more wonderful friends), lived as Vanessa a week out of every two and began seeing a therapist. I had countless conversations with my wife, fights and tears and love and support and a deep and open sharing.

I even put together a rough transition plan for myself, which went something like:

  • Start new job
  • Begin hormone therapy in September/October
  • Do awesome work on new job and make my employer happy
  • Slowly start coming out to more friends and family
  • Begin discussions with my manager and HR about living as Vanessa full time late 2011 or early 2012 (unless the hormones cause developments which need to speed said conversations)
  • Take a few weeks off to have facial feminization surgery and return to work as Vanessa
  • Cue Real Life Experience…
  • 12 months later, ‘It’s a girl!’

All neat and clean. As safe and comfortable as one could imagine such a dramatic upheaval ever being. But the plot has thickened, and I must roll the dice again on my tidy plan.

For reasons that are fairly complicated I find myself in a position where I need to tell my employer after only a week and a half on the job. I won’t go into all the details, but there wasn’t a slip up on my part, or anything overly prying on the part of my employer. It’s just an unfortunate side effect of the intersection between company policy, Crossdresser Heaven and my desire to be open and honest.

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I have a meeting scheduled with HR this week to try and work through it all. Honestly part of me is terrified. I haven’t had nearly enough preparation for this. I know that I’m relying in far too great a measure on my employer’s lgbt friendliness. Yet I sincerely don’t see this impacting my work or team for at least a year or more, and I’m hopeful that any serious drama can be postponed for at least as long.

Though I’ll also admit that part of me is excitedly anxious for this to be done. Perhaps it’s with resigned acceptance that my transgender journey will never be safe or predictable or fully in my control.

I had discussed with my therapist whether I should start as Vanessa, but we both agreed this would be far too much to handle for all concerned. After this week I count my blessings that I didn’t laden myself with this psychological burden as well – there are so many new things to learn as it is. I don’t think I could learn to work in a new gender role at the same time.

Come to think of it, I’m mostly at peace with it all. I expect a fairly positive reaction from HR, and if I can postpone sharing with my manager until it would impact my team I think it will make it easier when I do decide to share. While I can imagine many variations of a worst case scenario, what will be will be.

I’m going to fetch some water now…


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I’m passionate about creating a safe space for everyone in the transgender community to find laughter and friendship on their journey. I completed my physical transition in 2011 and through it I lost everything, and gained everything. I am blessed that I was forced to gaze inward and embark on the journey to discover and live my authentic self. My deepest wish is that all who wander here may find peace, happiness and freedom.

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Carolyn Ann
Carolyn Ann
13 years ago

As the inestimable Mr Burns said:

But, Mousie, thou art no thy lane,
In proving foresight may be vain;
The best-laid schemes o' mice an 'men
Gang aft agley,
An'lea'e us nought but grief an' pain,
For promis'd joy!

Hopefully there won't be so much grief and pain as promis'd joy. 🙂
Good luck! 🙂

13 years ago

Hi Vanessa: I wouldnt rush right out there and try to run full throttle. You got a lot of time to learn, and settle in. I dunno. I think a guy or gal in a hireing position would respect it more if you told them your make up….. UP FRONT when applying for the job. It will likely make NO difference, and they will admire you for your frankness with them. Dont confront them wearing a dress. If someone came in my shop like that Id fire them.. for mis representation. If you hire a guy, you hired a guy.… Read more »

13 years ago

Not much I can say really except good luck!


13 years ago

Now girls dont get rattled. Having re read my comment above where I said Id fire someone who misrepresented himself or herself when applying for a job was meant to concur with this scenario; I was in the explosives business and that job was rough dirty, with strenous work. If someone came in as a laboror thats what would be demanded. I couldnt pull that guy off the job, after he told me he wanted to transition to become a woman…. and set him behind a typewriter to keep him/her employed. We already had a gal for that job. It… Read more »

rogina garter
rogina garter
13 years ago
Reply to  carol

I don't think that Vanessa's job is one that is male exclusive…she wouldn't have taken it,given her plan. I work for myself and hire others at times,so I will add..At the time of most job interviews with a new company,the applicant is untested in that job[at the time]How you will fit in,catch on,etc is an unknown to the interviewer.Bringing transition and gender issues up at that time will more than likely result in"them not wanting to take a chance on you". Once they can see your value to them,a discussion about your personal plan is in order..which Vanessa is doing.… Read more »

rogina garter
rogina garter
13 years ago
Reply to  Vanessa Law

I thought so!! I am sure that it will all work out for you as you are worth it! Hugs,Rogina

Catherine O'Connor
Catherine O'Connor
13 years ago

Best wishes for the interview with HR and hope for a good outcome. I think if they have a transition policy, than they will probably honor it. Although no-one likes surprises. Perhaps you can negotiate how you do it and even how far you want to go. I would suppose surprise and shock to your employees would be something to consider, let alone to your boss. Perhaps you could present some of your best photos as Vanessa as a start. Perhaps at some point, if you proceed, you could come in as Vanessa on, say, some fridays so both you… Read more »

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