Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Follow-up to Obligations

I have found it to be quite impossible to live in stealth mode these days.

Take today's doctor's appointment for blood work which had to be completed before my next appointment. The form that the office was using to annotate my blood tests had both my female and male name still on the form. I was devastated to see my old name still being used in the computer; it read Sarah Jane/John Riggle, WTF is wrong with these people. I notice that there seems to be quite a number of new employees floating around, even the tech who was to draw my blood was someone I have never seen before. So again I asked her to change the way my name reads on the next form and in their computer by dropping the male name. I can see the questions forming in her face, but she doesn't ask, so I tell her that I am trans and she says it's really none of her business. Well no it's not, but she should at least know the truth. After all, there was my male name as plain as day.

And I know for a fact that I am not the only trans patient that is seen in this doctor's office, just don't know if anyone else's patient records has both name. I just feel that any time I have an opportunity to educate someone about gender issues, then I should use them to my advantage in making someone feel comfortable if they have questions they want to ask; to ask them and get it out in the open.

Having a history with several doctors, that I have been seeing and have a large medical file containing both names is nothing one can erase, except to change doctors. But my doctors have great established practices, it just that people will find out; talk outside the office or elsewhere. I believe that would constitute a breach of the HEPA ethics, but how can you say if that happens.

There's work history, credit history, military records, any number of established records that can't be changed that defines my male history; not to say anything about transition in a small South Georgia town where your 3 children grew up and work and have lived.

Going under the radar and being stealth at least for me is making a life that is visible yet so convincingly female that the people who do not know about my other life, just sees me as the rather tall gray haired woman who hangs around with another women and they are who they are, no secrets, but we don't tell our stories to everyone. If people suggest that 'we are sisters', we agree and let it go.


Melissa said...

I suppose it's one of the hazards of not transitioning early on in life. The longer you live, the more history you build, and more people get to know you as a male, or female as the case may be. I look forward to a day, when the characteristics of being transgendered are recognized, accepted, and appropriately dealt with in early childhood, so trans kids can grow up in their true gender, and not accumulate all of the baggage that later transitioning transsexuals do. Some very enlightened parents do recognize and accept they trans kid's nature, but most remain in denial and try to force their kids into gender conformity. They have no idea how much damage they cause the child by doing that.

Melissa XX

Two Auntees said...

That would be HIPPA regulations. And, yes, talking about a patient's medical history outside the office or in a manner that anyone can hear it is a violation of HIPPA regulations.