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Transgender Employees: What Are Their Rights?

Transgender employees are a topic many employers avoid. But the issue can involve fundamental workplace questions that ultimately impact everyone. Read More

I do not want to share women's toilets with someone who is not a woman!

My half brother now sister supposedly is a transexual and a P addict who makes my elderly father's life hell so I am prejudiced here I admit, but it seems to me that transgendered people are gay people who can't come to terms with it and want to take hormones and undergo surgery to become this neutered human. It is utterly narcissistic.8
One in a hundred people transgender? I really doubt it is this high.
Men are taller and stronger than women, having some man dressed in drag taking hormones that make his mood unstable and sharing my space in front of the mirror in the ladies loos is a bit much to face before a meeting on Monday morning.

I feel this libra tampon advert from Australia sums up the whole situation http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=CmKTnKFzKlU .

I am sorry your sister is

I am sorry your sister is making your father's life hell. It's not clear if that's because of her being transgendered, or if there are other things going on.

First, whether you agree with it or not, a transgender person may be attracted to either sex. A transgender woman (formerly a man) may still be attracted to women.

As for narcissism... if you expect everyone to be like you, or live *their* lives the way you want them to live, then maybe you are the narcissist.

Everyone is different, there is no cookie cutter for how a human should be, male or female. If you are uncomfortable with someone who doesn't live the way you want them to, then the problem is with you, not them.

Yeah, no.

"but it seems to me that transgendered people are gay people who can't come to terms with it "

Sure. Because it's so much easier to come out as trans instead of gay. Logic, this makes none. Moreover, guess what? There are gay trans people too! I would know, I am one: I lived a hetero woman's life for years, before coming out as a gay trans man.

" want to take hormones and undergo surgery"

Right. People want to go under the knife, repeatedly, painfully, and endure deep social and emotional troubles, all for the sake of... not suffering from coming out as gay? Really!?

"to become this neutered human"

Neutered, maybe, but neither asexual nor sexless. So what's the relevance of the "neutered" part, exactly?

"It is utterly narcissistic."

Well, sorry if we're not self-hating enough to deny ourselves a chance to live a happier life, a life in which we'll have a chance to be more honest with ourselves and others about who we really are. I suppose you also think that gay people are narcissistic to impose their non-straight sexuality on others?

"Men are taller and stronger than women, having some man dressed in drag taking hormones that make his mood unstable and sharing my space in front of the mirror in the ladies loos is a bit much to face before a meeting on Monday morning."

If you're implying that trans women are out to rape as many women as they can, then you can be reassured: trans women are far, FAR more likely to BE raped than to ever rape anyone.

And also: that transgender woman doesn't want to share her space in front of the mirror with someone who actively expects her to keep miserable for the rest of her life just for the sake of not upsetting precious little you. Just so you know that the feeling is shared, see.

Everyone has rights, but I

Everyone has rights, but I feel the rights of women in particular are being overlooked to accommodate transwomen. The majority of transwomen have not had surgery. I take issue with the expectation that I share a bathroom with a biological male, particularly as a survivor of sexual violence. This is not to suggest that transgender people are any more likely to commit violence than anyone else, but that sharing a bathroom with a biological male is uncomfortable for many women, whether they're transgender or not.

The rights of transgender people need to be balanced with the rights of other people in the workplace and alternative options should be looked into, for example the provision of unisex or single stall bathrooms. Unfortunately this is not the case with most legislation dismissing the valid concerns of women in particular.

A few facts

1. Trans women are even more scared of using the bathroom with you than you are. For many of them, it takes YEARS to stop feeling frantic with worry EVERY SINGLE TIME they have to use a public bathroom. They are scared because they know that most people think they are secret rapists just trying to prey on cis women, when in fact they are just regular people in need of a bathroom stop.

2. Trans women are FAR more likely to BE raped than to rape anybody. The statistics are crystal clear on that point.

3. If a trans woman is taking hormones, then chances are her libido has turned to a feminine one, or even disappeared entirely if she's taking anti-testosterone meds.

4. You've probably already shared a bathroom with a trans woman and never noticed. It may even be happening on a regular basis. All you see is a woman coming in, going into a stall, doing her business, washing her hands, maybe taking a minute to fix her make-up, and then leaving. That's ALL you're going to experience. But go back to my first point: while you experience nothing out of the ordinary at all, that trans woman may be dying with anxiety every second she's in that bathroom with you. Think about that.

"the provision of unisex or single stall bathrooms."

How exactly would unisex bathrooms be any better?? Are you seriously suggesting that having women share the bathroom with 100% cis MEN would be better than having them share it with trans WOMEN!?

"Unfortunately this is not the case with most legislation dismissing the valid concerns of women in particular."

No, your concerns are NOT valid. Just because you IMAGINE that trans women are this way or that way, does not make it so. Every study ever done on these topics has always shown that trans women are NO THREAT AT ALL to cis women. It's even the opposite: it's people like you who are a threat to trans women, because you expose them to public humiliation, harrassment, and potential violence when you make a scene about them sharing the bathroom with you.

Your concerns are not valid. You are just imagining things to scare yourself, regardless of what reality actually shows. And then you ask that innocent people who already have a hard life, be given an even harder time to protect you from your imaginary perils. How fair is that, exactly?

By unisex bathrooms I meant

By unisex bathrooms I meant single stall bathrooms. Sorry for the confusion. Also your entire comment highlights my point that the concerns of women are completely dismissed and invalidated in this debate. Women experience sexual violence at high rates, women are often attacked in bathrooms, women often feel anxiety when confronted with biological males in female bathrooms. Apparently these experiences are not valid and are actually acts of violence against transwomen?

I'm sorry but my ooncerns are valid. I use an all female gym. There was a transwoman at the gym. It was very obvious that she was transgender and biologically male. I did not feel comfortable sharing the change room with her. That is a valid concern of mine as a woman, just as it's a valid concern for transwomen to feel anxiety and discomfort using a men's room. My point is that there are ways around these issues that respect the rights of everyone and don't completely disregard the rights of women. There have been cases of pre--op transwomen exposing their penises to schoolgirls in female change rooms, intentionally or not. I'm sorry but those girls have rights too.

You are the problem, not them.

"Also your entire comment highlights my point that the concerns of women are completely dismissed and invalidated in this debate."

No. I personally only dismiss the completely irrational points.

"Women experience sexual violence at high rates, women are often attacked in bathrooms, women often feel anxiety when confronted with biological males in female bathrooms. Apparently these experiences are not valid and are actually acts of violence against transwomen? "

You go at length about how cis women FEEL about trans women, but you mention exactly NOTHING about what trans women DO to justify being feared and hated by cis women. Do trans women attack cis women in public bathrooms? No. Do trans women behave in a menacing way towards cis women in bathrooms? No. So all you're saying is that trans women should be discriminated against simply because cis women hold an irrational fear of and hatred towards them. If you can't see why this is not okay, then there's something very wrong with you.

" I use an all female gym. There was a transwoman at the gym. It was very obvious that she was transgender and biologically male. I did not feel comfortable sharing the change room with her. That is a valid concern of mine as a woman"

No, it was not a valid concern of yours; it was an irrational PREJUDICE of yours. You felt uncomfortable even though she had done nothing to make you uncomfortable - except *gasp* existing! YOU had a problem with an innocent person sharing your space, but you wanted HER to be punished for YOUR feelings. This is ten thousands shades of wrong.

" just as it's a valid concern for transwomen to feel anxiety and discomfort using a men's room"

Not just men's rooms: women's rooms too. Trans women are scared of using women's rooms because they know that there are people like you, people with an irrational fear and hatred of them, who could call security on them EVEN THOUGH THEY HAVE DONE NOTHING WRONG. So let me repeat: YOU are the problem here, not them.

" There have been cases of pre--op transwomen exposing their penises to schoolgirls in female change rooms, intentionally or not."

Three things:

1. Oh really? Are you sure about that, or is it just "something you've been told" and never bothered to check? I've personally never heard of such stories, and certainly not of MANY such stories.

2. Most young pre-op trans women I know can't stand the sight of their own penis. Exposing it to the view of anyone else, let alone girls they are trying to befriend, would be the last thing on their mind, and a terribly mortifying experience for them if it happened accidentally.

3. There's no such thing as a right for women to not be exposed to the accidental sight of a penis. Nor is there any need for such a right, because the view of a penis is not inherently traumatising. Protecting girls and women against all sorts of sexual assaults, including deliberate unwanted penis exposure, is a good and necessary thing. Painting penises themselves as Big Bad Things that women must be protected from ever seeing ever, is ridiculous.

All you've convinced me of, is that you're holding an irrational prejudice against a category of people who have done nothing to you or anybody else. You want to make them suffer to assuage fears you have no reason to hold in the first place. This is Not Okay, period.

Women Need To Have Real Information

Did Mr. HR Read this study? http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0016885 These are violent deluded men with a sexual fetish called autogynephilia. Women need to be educated and not by the peddlers of nonsense. What he means is that women better accommodate men--because Trans is male privilege to be a woman deep down inside while still packing a penis is next social justice frontier. The fact is--these men murder and rape at the exact same rate as other men. I would not share a woman's space with one. I would sooner file a law suit. Women are real, they have rights. This man is quack a fraud and he did not mention that over 70 women have been raped and murdered by "Trans women" and children--that number is staggering. But to hear them tell it they are in extreem danger. This man is irresponsible and in about 10 years his carreer will be considered with the same folk that bought into and pushed recovered memory. Women should all file suit if forced to share women safe spaces with a man--this guy honors his buddies fetish and in so doing places women at risk--how hip and progressive--men over women, really cutting edge.
http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0016885

"http://www.plosone.org/artic

"http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0016885 These are violent deluded men with a sexual fetish called autogynephilia. "

Interesting. The way you juxtaposed these two items makes it look like the linked study concludes or supports the sentence which follows the link, when in fact it has NOTHING to do with it. NOWHERE in that study is autogynephilia mentioned, for example. YOU injected this and made it look like this ridiculous assertion was supported by the study. In short, you're being appallingly dishonest.

"The fact is--these men murder and rape at the exact same rate as other men."

You're doing it again. Yes the study concludes that trans women keep the same criminality rape as cis men after sex reassignment surgery, BUT nowhere does it specifically mention rape. Also, you'll notice that once a trans woman has undergone sex reassignment surgery as did the subjects of this study, she does NOT have a penis anymore, duh!

" I would not share a woman's space with one. "

You probably already have, possibly multiple times.

"over 70 women have been raped and murdered by "Trans women" and children--that number is staggering"

No, it's not, since it completely lacks context. 70 women in how many years and in how large an area?

"But to hear them tell it they are in extreem danger."

They are. The study you linked to says so. Here's the full conclusion of it:

This study found substantially higher rates of overall mortality, death from cardiovascular disease and suicide, suicide attempts, and psychiatric hospitalisations in sex-reassigned transsexual individuals compared to a healthy control population. This highlights that post surgical transsexuals are a risk group that need long-term psychiatric and somatic follow-up. Even though surgery and hormonal therapy alleviates gender dysphoria, it is apparently not sufficient to remedy the high rates of morbidity and mortality found among transsexual persons. Improved care for the transsexual group after the sex reassignment should therefore be considered.

There you go: trans people are FAR more likely to DIE than cis people. That's the very definition of "being in danger".

"Women should all file suit if forced to share women safe spaces with a man"

A trans woman is not a man, so good luck with that.

"this guy honors his buddies fetish and in so doing places women at risk--how hip and progressive--men over women, really cutting edge."

I notice you're completely fixated on trans women. What about trans men like me? Don't we count because in your eyes we're women? In which case, who is being sexist here? Who is putting "men over women", if not YOU? As you say: really cutting edge.

Transphobia

I think that many casual readers of Psychology Today will be shocked at the degree of irrationality shown in some of the comments.

It's obvious that Transphobia goes far beyond anything with an objectively rational basis, that it's a deeply emotive issue far removed from any factual concerns.

Employers should be aware of the dangers of legal liability due to the actions of employees with this syndrome, which hasn't received the attention from forensic psychologists it deserves. As far as I know, there are no formal counseling or therapeutic programs available to deal with it.

In the past, we've looked on it as merely an individual viewpoint, a political, religious or ideological matter of individual opinion. But there's obviously something far deeper there, a consistent pattern. While some are rational, even if ill-informed, others show the same kind of disordered thinking as is seen in extreme racism and anti-semitism. It starts with a discomfort, then rationalises that by engaging in fantastic thoughts of how evil those causing the discomfort must be, and then ends up mistaking those fantasies for reality.

A phobia is an irrational

A phobia is an irrational fear. There are good, rational reasons to be concerned with legislation that disregards the rights of women to have comfortable access to female designated areas and that posits that anyone who simply 'identifies' as a woman, regardless of biology, is a woman. There are ways to ensure that everyone's rights are respected. We should be looking at those, not running rough shod over the hard earned rights of women.

"Simply"

"anyone who simply 'identifies' as a woman, regardless of biology,"

How can you use the word "simply" in such a case? A trans woman does NOT simply identify as a woman! A trans woman wonders for years what the hell is wrong with her, why she is such a freak, why she can't seem to manage to change no matter how hard she tries. A trans woman lives in shame and fear for years, sometimes decades, before discovering that there are others like her, and even then it can STILL take many more years or decades before she dares be herself around anyone other than those other trans women. A trans woman has to face the potential rejection of her true person by everything and everyone in her life when she comes out: her family (her parents, siblings, extended family, spouse, children...), her friends, her bosses/coworkers/clients/customers/whatever, her neighbours, her church authorities or fellow church-goers, and so on and so forth.

And then of course, after she endured all of that, she still has to deal with people like YOU, who reject her "just because", and deny her years or decades of suffering with a "simply".

Shame on you. Your selfishness and callousness makes me want to cry with frustration. You have NO IDEA what we trans people endure, yet you don't hesitate to dismiss our lifelong struggle with a "simply". Shame on you, really.

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Steve M. Cohen, Ed.D., C.M.C., is the president of Labor Management Advisory Group and HR Solutions: On-Call, and the author of Mess Management: Lessons From a Corporate Hit Man.

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