I’ve been trying to understand why this hit me so hard, and I think it’s that I have followed her career for decades. I’ve liked everything she’s done, and think she’s massively talented and brave. So this isn’t some public figure I’ll never think about or seek out in my life. This is someone whose name I will think of often. And for me, the particular name chosen is worse than, for example, “Karen”, because it has all of the negative references that Karen does but also an undercurrent of weaponizing femininity itself. (For me. Again, I know this is my personal association with the name.) Every Suzy I know personally is the exact opposite of Izzard. To me, if someone else referred to her with that name, I would assume they were being insulting.
I just can’t seem to shake it. Of course, I will have to figure out how to associate such a negative name with such a wonderful person. It’s my problem.
I should probably mention that one of my children changed her name as an adult. Changing one’s name to fit one’s self better is not something I’m against in any way. I just have a knee-jerk reaction to that particular name.
It’s been an interesting conundrum to realize this. Having such a strong personal reaction hit me out of left field. It’s none of my business, but I still reacted.
ETA: I totally forgot: I also changed my name in my 30s. And I think I got it partly right and partly wrong. Not sure if that’s connected or not.
While this story is depressing and distressing in how a small group of bigots can clog up the courts and the media with their hate, there is good news. It’s not just that the courts rejected their bigotry in favour of the child’s position (and the parents), it’s that they explicitly called out the transphobic slur of “transgenderism “ as inappropriate language to have levelled in court.
As an aside watching videos of rhe creepy family being dragged out screaming and one arrested (and refusing bail, which would have been signing a form saying “I won’t be an arsehole”) was mildly satisfying.
Not as satisfying as a resounding judgment in favour of inclusion and support though.
This brings a memory of playing a board game with the kids many years ago where my youngest got a card asking “If you were the opposite gender, what would your name be?” Without hesitation, the answer came out “Morgan.” Well, many years later, guess what?
My kid who changed her name as an adult, she also spent her childhood knowing that the name she was given wasn’t right for her, but knowing what to change it to took many years. Your kid obviously knew who they were (on some level) right from the get-go.
I think a lot of us try out names and things with games. It’s low risk and easy enough to explain away (e.g. why would I, a cishet male, want to look at a guy for hours when I could be looking at a girl). I’ve used Anna or variations for years in video games, it makes sense that I would want to use that name now that I’m taking it out of the virtual world into meatspace.
I think I’ve shared this before and, if so, I apologize, but I think it’s cool that the university campus where I work has these up to remind people to be courteous and respect other peoples’ preferred pronouns.
And I know this may be oversimplifying by me but some of it just does come down to courtesy. If you introduce yourself and tell me your name it would be rude of me to arbitrarily call you something else that I thought suited you better. The same goes with personal pronouns–emphasis on the personal.
Spent lunchtime in a video conference updating UVA’s gender affirming surgery program. We now have a comprehensive care program in full swing, with a roughly 2 year wait list for surgeries. Apparently drawing from across the country, since there are so few (he was able to call to mind 3 others) centers that offer comprehensive care. Thing that I found most interesting is that, although surgical services are not offered to minors, it is the peds urology dept and surgeons doing the procedures. It is the peds endocrine dept doing hormonal therapy. It is peds psych doing he evals and clearances. Almost like pediatricians are willing to go to bat for their patients! I am proud of what we have here.
And negate so many of the awful ideas responsible for the suffering of cis people. That is extra scary. They cannot admit they were wrong because it means they suffered for nothing.
Transgender people, and our acceptance of them, have the capacity to change our entire society