Monday, February 1, 2010

A rose by any other...

One of the things that I've left off doing until now, is changing my name. It seems most appropriate to do now that I'm right at the point of needing my name to match my new identity. The timing and the amount of things I need to do, at the same time as all the other things that are going on... It's doing its best to turn into a stress bomb.

I met with the lawyer last Thursday, and she went over most of the stuff I needed to do. I guess the list isn't terribly difficult, and I already have some of the papers. But it's just more things to do. Then there's the cost. This particular lawyer is only willing to advise when she gets to handle all the court stuff, and of course that comes at a very lawyer-like price. Just another expense that I didn't need right now, since I'm struggling a little with surgery costs at the moment too.

So, documents and a big check will put me on the docket for the 12th. I do have to get it done, and this lawyer is supposedly the one to work with for transgender name changes. I understand her reasons for how she handles things, and can appreciate that she's got a lot of experience, and many good contacts, and she does need to run her business and make a living, but her total cutthroat attitude does not make me happy. I'm not getting a very warm feeling from the experience so far - I don't feel like a client, but rather just a source of money. Once the court date rolls around, we'll see how things go.

On the bright side, once the court decree comes through (which should be on the same day as the court session), I'll be able to get name and gender changed on my social security card and my driver's license, and I'll also be able to get a passport in my new name and gender. Then the process of getting everything else changed begins. Bank accounts, work records, all that stuff.

Speaking of work, I met with the HR director and the benefits coordinator on Friday, along with my manager. We talked about my plans regarding surgery, and vacation/leave, and they gave me a bunch of forms to fill out. No HR department is complete without a big stack of forms. I think we have a pretty good plan; I'll probably need to finalize some minor details with my manager, but it seems like we're on track for a pretty smooth transition.

This post feels pretty incomplete, but I did want to get something down, even though I have very little mental and emotional energy right now. Next post will hopefully be better.


Jerica said...

Well girl good luck! Sounds like the lawyer will help you do some things I didn't do on my own when I did my name change so it will hopefully be worth it. Like I never got my gender changed on my Social Security.

Anonymous said...

Whew, best of luck. At my early stage I'm still fretting about the social implications in changing my name to match a more feminine-looking person in future. I'd not even thought about the added hassle of administrative issues. The fact you can get some help doing it, even on an unfortunately impersonal level, sounds good indeed.

All the best of luck, as ever.

Carla Anderson said...

I'd rather have a lawyer who at least PRETENDS I'm something other than a walking ATM, but if she's The One to Get, then you're probably better off with her.

*HUGS* and good luck to you!

I'll be doing my own name change soon, but thankfully here in CA it's a simple enough process that one doesn't need an attorney to make it happen. I understand the need for certain safeguards, but I wish the states would just wise up and make trans name changes as painless as possible. :/

Anonymous said...

Thank you all for your kind words. As always, it's helpful to know there are people in my corner. I'm "used to" having to take care of everything by myself, and even though nobody's out there holding my hand, it's nice that you all are rooting for me.

Also, Jerica, I am a bit, shall we say, "modified", so I can get gender changes done now as well. :)

Alissia Megan Rose-Pait said...

*giggle* Modified? Is that like enhanced? On my list if E doesn't do it's job well enough. Big ones for me will be face. No modificaions yet, so no SSN gender change (nor passport..ugh)