After a cycling accident last Thursday, Julian Berton spent half of their ER intake answering questions about their trans gender identity while awaiting medical assistance for their badly broken arm.
“I had to mark my birth sex on the intake, which was already difficult because I’m right-handed, and had shattered multiple bones in my right arm,” says Julian. “But it also brought an onslaught of clarifying questions about my gender identity.”
“I think they were actually trying to be sensitive and inclusive,” Julian adds. “But they also seemed deeply confused, plus it was hard to give answers as I gritted my teeth to endure the pain of my smashed and neglected bones.”
Before Julian was able to see a doctor, they first filled a nurse in on everything that was going on with their genitals, hormones, sexuality, and gender identity.
“She read me a list of ten genders she could mark down, and when I said transgender man was fine, she asked me what that was,” Julian says. “I don’t think her intentions were bad, but it was sort of frustrating because my snapped radius had pierced through my skin and I was bleeding a lot on my shirt.”
Once Julian made it through intake, they answered roughly the same set of questions for the ER doctor who was treating them.
“These matters aren’t irrelevant,” says Dr. Kendall Jared. “When [redacted] told me [redacted] was on testosterone, I was concerned. You see, testosterone can be very dangerous if you’re planning to regularly get car doored while biking through the city and snap your arm bones clean in half.”
But Julian doesn’t see it that way.
“My gender and trans healthcare just didn’t seem that relevant to them putting my bones back inside of my body instead of outside of it,” they insist. “At first, when they were asking me all these questions about my preferred name and identity, I guess I thought that meant they were going to respect those things, but that wasn’t the case either, so I’m not sure what it was for.”
In fairness to the medical team, Julian reports the pain of being addressed as “Ms. [redacted]” for the duration of their hospital stay paled in comparison to that of their absolutely fucked to pieces radius and ulna.
“Thankfully I have a cast now,” Julian says. “So I can grab a sharpie and write up some FAQs on it about my trans gender identity for follow-up visits.”
Now that’s good healthcare!