- Everyday Trans* people face violence simply for being who they are. Outing someone can severely compromise their safety. Violence against them occurs on many different levels, every day. You cannot predict how anybody will react to this information, let alone how whomever they tell will act. If you want to look up some high profile cases of violence I suggest using google and looking up Colle Carpenter, Lance Reyna, and Chrissy Lee Polis.
2. It’s private information.
- The steps they must go through to transition are legally recognized by health organizations. Information about their status should be held as private information just like anyone person’s medical issues/treatments. This should only be disclosed to people that he says are okay.
3. He doesn’t want to be an activist 24/7.
- Some guys don’t mind being in the public eye, especially if he really is an activist. But some guys just want to live their lives, no differently than anyone else. And even if he is out in the public, it doesn’t mean he always wants to be in that position. It’s best to just leave it up to him as to when he wants to disclose his trans status.
4. Match Making
- Let’s say a cisgender person knows your trans* friend, and decides they would like to get to know each other better. You’re first reaction might be to tell him/her about your trans* friends status. Perhaps you think that the trans* person’s body might not be what the other person expects, but unless you have seen them naked, you don’t know what their body is like either. And who says that they won’t find it appealing? Or maybe you think you’re sparing them from a negative reaction you’re sure they’ll receive once they disclose their status. But what you might consider to be a deal breaker, might not be a problem for them. Many people don’t even make it past the first stages of a relationship for reasons that have nothing to do with their trans* status. Let him/her disclose this information when they think it should be.
5. Being trans is not who he is.
- Being trans is not who he is. It is a part of him, yes. But it does not define him. It is a medical condition and not a definition of them. They should not be identified by it.
6. “Diversity Training”
- If you have an urge to teach someone about diversity and you want to enlighten and educate them in order to help them be a better citizen and a more accepting human being, and to do it, you are going to tell them all about the trans* person you know, stifle that thought. Unless you have asked the trans* person involved whether they would mind being the subject of someone’s education on humanity, it would be best to leave the trans* person out of the lesson.
7. It doesn’t matter if he is out.
- It might seem like he is out to a lot of people, and that might make you think that it is okay because they don’t mind. But as with other assumption, it’s best not to because you might be wrong.
8. Rendering them invisible
- One minute they’re no different than anyone else, then poof, in the minds of some people, they’re immediately transformed into their birth assigned gender, or seen as a fake, or somebody who’s been trying to fool everybody. In some cases, to the person told, the trans* persons true self can disappear.
9. Disclosing birth names.
- What some people do not realize is that some trans* people guard their birth name and would consider it’s disclosure to be hurtful/offensive. For some their birth name represents a period of their life that they would like to put behind them.
10. Whose business is it anyway?
- Ultimately, the bottom line is that their status is their personal information, their history, their story, their life. It is nobody else’s place to disclose it.