Healthcare Others

I have a trans-identifying man (transwoman) in my extended family who is aggressive towards women

. The majority of our family are convinced our relative is only ‘lashing out’ because he is ‘oppressed’. (I used to be happy to use his preferred pronouns, but since his harassment of me and violent threats made to other women, I no longer extend him that courtesy.) This has been easy for him to achieve because there is so much propaganda that he can access from lobbying groups, from newspapers, from television companies.

He is over 6 foot tall, young and healthy, and I and some others of the women in my family are scared of his aggression. Currently, I feel unable to report the harassment from him to the police, as I’ve read reports of how police treat women who report these aggressive men.

I also know that his immediate family would be likely to seek revenge whether or not the police took it seriously.

I’ve had to stop speaking publicly in my real name on social media about many issues because I fear that the harassment from him will escalate into direct violence against me and my children. Even when I ‘liked’ a post about women’s rights on Facebook, that resulted in a day or two of abusive messages.

I’m branded as ‘transphobic’ because I fear this individual who happens to call himself trans. He was aggressive towards women before he started telling people he was trans, so I consider this fear to be rational. There’s nothing ‘phobic’ about it.

But I have to keep speaking up for reality because it’s the lies and propaganda about gender, trans people and ‘terfs’ that has created the atmosphere where this young man is able to get away with his abusive behaviour.

I have been able to contribute to the governments GRA consultation and have written to my MP as I don’t fear that confidentiality would be broken.

I also don’t fear that this description of my current situation will be able to be traced back to me because there are probably thousands of us in very similar circumstances.

I have a FB account in my own name that I now barely use, but I have anonymous accounts on other social media where I can share and like reasonable views without being further harassed.

The things I did to publicly speak up were so innocuous that I was surprised that the TW in my family became so abusive towards me so quickly. I shared a newspaper article from the Morning Star written by a transwoman (but apparently, not the right sort of transwoman) and I liked a Woman’s Place UK post on Facebook that wasn’t even about the gender/trans issue, but I was still told this was ‘bigotry’ because they are ‘all terfs.’ My first response was to try to reassure him that he didn’t have to agree with the other transwoman whose article I posted, but there was room was respectful discussion. That led to abusive and threatening messages not just left to me, but also to other women in my family, who were told to break all contact with me if they didn’t want to be called ‘transphobes.’

Before this happened, before he told his family that he’s a ‘woman’, he’d already been aggressive towards women and had been told not to return to his university, so I am wary that the likelihood of his harassment of me escalating is high.

The negative consequences of this are that some of my family no longer speak to me. I don’t know how much that is because they are scared of this abusive person in our family or how much they agree with him that I’m a horrible person for thinking that Women’s Place UK are not evil and for thinking that trans people are allowed diversity of thought.

Other negative consequences are that I am nervous when at home because I don’t know if he will just turn up at my doorstep or how violent he will feel justified to be. He often posts things on social media glorifying violence against the police and fascists. (He considers me to be a fascist.) This has affected my mental health to some extent. I’m sure he’d like me to be more adversely impacted than I am, but I will survive. I have to, because I need to do what I can to protect my daughter, my niece, and other women. I might keep a tactical silence in certain places, but I will not be broken.

AnonForSafety, I might be forced into anonymity for my immediate safety, but I have to keep speaking up for the safety of half of the population