A little nervous

I realize my posts about the transition/LGBT stuff has been sporadic lately. It is due to Jello’s graduating and looking for work, the fact that I got told my current job is ending possibly in three months and overall stress. So job hunting stress wasn’t going well to begin with.

However some good and anxiety driving news  has happened. I accepted a job with the Department of Defense as a Defense Contractor Auditor. I will be auditing large defense contractors in order to make sure they are not misspending taxpayer money. As a side note, some people have warned me that I am revealing details about my personal life. I am out of the closet. I keep things semi-anonymous just to stop the part time trolls. I am not ashamed of what I do, or especially of my husband. If people find my blog, I am ok with it.

This is great news, it is especially fortuitous since Obama just signed additional protections for the LGBT community See Link Here. However the nerve wracking part is this is my first time starting a job in a homosexual marriage. Not that I am not proud of my wonderful husband Jello, it is just a different set of anxieties.

Before this I was hired and for the first few months people identified me as a cis-gendered white male in a heterosexual marriage, pretty much the “easy” setting for life. Now I am no longer outwardly heterosexual when people meet me (let alone the other issues that aren’t so obvious), so I have stepped up the difficulty setting by one notch (although to be perfectly honest it isn’t even close to as hard as someone who is not heterosexual and a person of color, or someone who is transgender, I completely realize that). My privilege card has been reduced at work for the first time, and it is something I am sure to realize more fully as time goes on.

I guess I am making it more then it is though. I keep going over how to explain we have been married 22 years when they ask about my spouse, since it hasn’t been legal that long to be in a same sex marriage. I don’t know what photos to have in my cubicle space or how to answer questions. I don’t want to necessarily out Jello as transgender. Not because how it reflects on me, they can screw off on that, but I don’t want him to feel I am embarrassed, or that I need to explain to everyone why I am with him. I know he is ok with me keeping photos and talking about our marriage and him before the transition, but part of me feels like I am betraying his transition when I do that.

Also there is a bit of nervousness as well due to my new employee status. I had finished my probationary period as an underground economy auditor for the ESD about four months ago (hence I came out to them about Jello). Now I am in a new position at a federal agency and I have to survive a year before this probationary period ends.

It isn’t that I am worried too much about the job. I would be sad to lose the job because of some narrow minded jerk, but would move on. I worry because for the next couple of months I am the sole supporter. Jello might have a job as soon as next week, but it will take a few weeks to get him up and running with steady paychecks.

I am sure I will talk more about this anxiety. It is a new type of anxiety, and I am definitely behind the curve compared to someone else my age and in a same sex marriage since I didn’t have to come out in my teens/early twenties.

Although to make it absolutely clear, Jello is absolutely worth it and I have no regrets.

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3 Responses to A little nervous

  1. Lesboi says:

    Even though I now ID as transgender I spent 30 years living as a lesbian so I have a little experience dealing with these issues. My best advice to you is to pick a story and stick to it with your co-workers. And I would be as honest as I felt comfortable and Jello felt comfortable with being. In other words if Jello wants to be out as trans than I would honor that and tell the whole truth. If he’s not so keen on that then I might say that we’ve been together for 22 years and that he’s your husband. They will see you as in a gay marriage either way. If you don’t come out about Jello’s trans status I would not bring pictures of him pre-transition to my office. As time goes on, if you make close friends that you trust and bring into your private world you can choose to open up to them about the truth. Whatever you do, make a choice and get comfortable with it as much as possible and the anxiety will lessen. Mention your husband in conversations just as you did your wife in the past and be nonchalant about it. What you project to your co-workers they will respond with. I wish you both good luck with your new jobs and new lives.

  2. Jello says:

    I think Lesboi has the best advice here. Mention we’ve been together for 22 years “And are married”. It’s not untrue. It’s just that they won’t dig into your past so much.

    I’d use my current pictures, and not bring up that I’m trans unless it’s related. Mostly, I’d fly under the wire until probation is over, then you can be your normal cantankerous self. You’ll probably clash on politics more than on the queer issues.

  3. Jamie Ray says:

    Having worked in government jobs for my whole career, my advice is that if you pay attention to the job, act serious, and don’t f-around, you will find an underground of “good guys” who just want to work and don’t care about your personal life.
    I would avoid personal photos at first, except for the cats. Let them get to know you, you probably won’t set off the gaydar. Good luck!

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