Trigger warning: How I experienced trans-phobia and hate.

girls day out.jpg

2 girls having fun hours later (posted with permission of all involved)

I have thought a lot about this incident and whether to share it or not, but finally decided to here. (it has been edited down a lot)

Just over a week ago I was looking for a swimsuit and stopped at a store in the Portland area. I was dressed somewhat feminine(cute white capri pants, tank top and sandals, but without any makeup. As I began walking into the store some guys started talking/yelling at me things like "your a dude, dress like one", "You look like a f_g!" I tried to ignore them and continued into the store, but they followed me continuing to be hateful. At this point I am starting to get scared. I know that this store has a single restroom so I headed towards it to hide from them, but found it locked. They had continued down the hallway towards me still yelling things, and in a panic I bolted into the women's restroom, this set them off. As they continued yelling about the F_g in the women's restroom I was getting close to panicking. I ended up calling the stores number, within a minute there were 2 employees(the store manager and woman employee) at the restroom. The manager stayed out in the hallway while she came inside to check on me. They had already called the police. When the police arrived the haters were taken someplace else, after I calmed down and they took my statement, the woman police officer escorted me to my vehicle and watched me drive away while the other officer kept the haters at inside so they could not follow me.

I share this to remind everyone that there is still a lot of hate in the world, even in LGBTQ+ friendly Portland Oregon. I am so thankful for the support I had from the stores managers and the police that responded. We must continue on in the fight for equality and justice.

I am also so thankful for a friend/sister (pictured above) that I could go cry with after. Surround yourselves with people that love and care for you. Life is not always easy, but with loved ones nearby, they can help you navigate it.