Voluntary sector

As an ex prisoner I was horrified at the policies allowing men into women’s prisons

I came to the transgender debate via 3 main channels. Firstly as an ex prisoner I was horrified at the policies allowing men into women’s prisons and could not imagine the thought of women I’d known and cared about having to share cell and living space with men, particularly knowing how traumatised by men many of those women had been. That was my introduction.

Secondly as a lesbian I was alarmed to see the increasing numbers of young lesbians being referred to gender clinics, and realising that their self hatred and discomfort was being used to legitimise what I came to see as a men’s sexual rights movement.

Thirdly, I have a daughter, and while I’ve always called myself a feminist, the call to activism came as a measure to try and make the world better for her and my friend’s daughters. Silence was not an option.

I have over the past 6 years become increasingly vocal against the trans lobby. I have joined many feminist groups, helped develop and execute campaigns with ReSisters, Fair Play for Women and many others. I’ve organised and taken part in many protests, including marching at the front of Manchester Pride with Get The L Out.

I attracted nationwide controversy when I was barred from my local pub for wearing a feminist T shirt. This attracted a lot of press coverage and radio interviews in which I tried to take the opportunity to bring the issues to an audience outside feminism.

More recently I’ve been concentrating on the issues facing detransitioned women and the unique challenges they face. I will continue to work to elevate their voices and I will never stop asking hard questions about trans ideology.

The first thing to happen was that I lost 70% of my friends locally and was threatened with violence from people in my town whom I have never met nor would even recognise on the street, which was a little disconcerting.

I run charity projects providing aid to refugee women and my main donation base is women, specifically mothers, who may pull funding if they know I’m a vocal activist, so keeping these projects separate is always a tightrope act.

The main harrassment I receive is online, which is easily brushed off, but being painted as a bigot in my home town has been difficult. Especially when it’s coming from people who’ve known me for years and know that I’m the opposite. I think possibly the most negative consequence has been really, properly seeing the misogyny that pervades every aspect of life and once you see it there’s really no going back. On the bright side though, the women I’ve met through feminism have been the best friends I’ve ever had and I have no doubt that together we can pull the plug on all this madness.

Rebekah W, Gobby lesbian single mum with pockets full of terrifying feminist propaganda