Justice

What Happened When This Trans Woman Came out to Her Mostly Male Office

A woman was pleasantly surprised by the immense love and support she received after coming out as transgender to her male-dominated office. 

Amanda Jette Knox, who runs the blog The Maven of Mayhem, detailed her wife's coming out at work experience in a recent post. Knox, who lives in Canada, wrote that her wife manages a team of software developers and has known many of her colleagues for more than 15 years. Because they've known her for so long, Knox's wife was worried about how some of her coworkers might respond to the change, but when she emailed the company about it, she received dozens of messages of support.

"The support was immediately apparent; she received about 75 incredibly kind responses from co-workers, both local and international," Knox wrote, adding that her wife took a week off work and worked from home for a week after that. She returned to a lot of encouraging decorations at her cubicle. Her coworkers also wrote her new name, Zoe, in several prominent cubicle areas.

"To top it all off, that 10 a.m. 'meeting' she was scheduled to attend was actually a coming out party to welcome her back to work as her true self — complete with coffee and cupcakes and handshakes and hugs," Knox wrote.

Knox added that she initially worried that she'd have to wear her "advocacy pants" to the office in case people were disrespectful. She did visit the office, but not to chew anyone out.

"[I]nstead of having my advocacy pants on, I had my hugging arms ready and some mascara in my purse in case I cried it off while thanking everyone," Knox wrote.

Knox wrote that while she was relieved her wife was so well-received at work, coming out as transgender is not universally tolerated. She cited discriminatory bathroom bills and religious freedom laws as obstacles for trans people. Even though Knox and her wife live in Canada, where there are anti-discrimination work laws in place, certain countries and areas are less accepting of trans people.

"We live in a world where my family gets threats for daring to speak out for trans rights. We live in a world where we can't travel to certain locations for fear of discrimination — or worse. So when I see good stuff happening — especially when it takes place right on our doorstep — I'm going to share it far and wide. Let's normalize this stuff. Let's make celebrating diversity our everyday, rather than hating or fearing it. So chill out, haters. Take a load off with us. It's a lot of energy to judge people, you know. It's way more fun to celebrate and support them for who they are."

Knox's post received a lot of positive reactions on her blog and social media.

Comments

Knox had this to say to those who criticized her:

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