INTERVIEWS/ NARRATIVES

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#1

“My last dismissal case was as my boss stated, ‘I have nothing to say about your practice but I couldn’t resist to the pressure coming from around. You always have complaints. Unfortunately they are about your existence.’” (Ece, 41, Dentist)

BEING FIRED, DISCRIMINATION
#2

“My education, I am a high school graduate. Well, in fact my trans identity precluded me from many thing that I wanted to do at the condition of Turkey.” (Neriman, 34, Barmaid/Manager)

EDUCATION, PROFESSION
#3

“I came here after I finished my studies. Because it was too hard to find a job in Balıkesir. While even the ordinary people or the ordinary women have difficulties to find job, it was even harder for a trans woman who did not start life with a silver spoon in their mouth.” (Peyker, 22, Sex Worker)

DISCRIMINATION, JOB APPLICATION
#4

“If you don’t want to do sex work, the family is a huge factor. This is the only thing that I want to add… I mean, for example I realized that I didn’t do sex work just to be accepted by my family and my neighbors. My moralistic attitude, even that I declare myself as a socialist feminist I come from a feudal family. I don’t think some things will be possible until we destroy this feudality and the force inside of us. If it will be possible, there should be the support of the family.” (Peyker, 22, Sex Worker)

ACCEPTANCE, FAMILY, HONOUR, SEX WORK
#5

“You can’t build a warm friendship at work either. By no means, you can’t. When you try to build, it goes on this way. For example when you try to become friends with a hetero man, what you hear is: ‘I will ask you something, are you hairless? Are you smooth? Are you like a girl? In fact you are quite bangable.’ As you know where these conversations lead, you just leave the place.” (Neşe, 25, Cashier)

BECOMING ISOLATED, CO-WORKERS, VERBAL HARASSMENT, WORKING LIFE
#6

“My plan was already that way. Yes, I was someone who likes the faculty of medicine and science but on the other hand I really did the plan. I have to be someone who can get a job.” (Derya, 30, Doctor)

EDUCATION, FUTURE PLANS, PROFESSION
#7

“As I stated to (work at) P, I wore my lipstick and... if I was working in another sector in another place, I couldn’t do this. I wouldn’t be that much courageous. Well, I started to wear my lipstick, then I started to wear makeup little by little. So day by day in that you are getting nourished, gaining self-confidence. Not really negative things, normally if I was working in another place my colleagues would discourage me with their negative regards etc. But I am very lucky to work at P. Thanks to it, my transition process was late but it was fast.” (Ahu, 35, NGO worker)

ACCEPTANCE, COMING OUT, SUPPORT, WORKING ENVIRONMENT, WORKING LIFE, WORKPLACE
#8

“There are some of them who give more many, leave the rest by seeing a woman. They say, ‘Look she is earning her own bread’ or ‘I saw a lot working here or there’ When I heard this I asked them ‘what do you mean by here or there’. They said ‘There are the ones who prostitute, swindle and there are the usupers.’ I asked ‘Is this why you give the tip’ He said ‘I just felt like and I gave’. Let’s say it was 20 liras and they give 100 liras and said ‘keep the rest’ I got shocked after that.” (Ece Gül, 37, Motorcycle Courier)

ACCEPTANCE, CONFRONTATIONS, HONOUR, SEX WORK
#9

“My priority was to find a place that accepts my transition process. My biggest reason to apply to A association was that anyway. But if there was not a place like A, my transition process would be longer I think. At least I could postpone it till the time I earn the money to pay the surgery or to live on for a year. Or the other option would be leaving the tour guiding and starting to the sex work. I never thought to do tour guiding while keep going it (transition)” (Selen, 35, Tour Guide)

ACCEPTANCE, DISCRIMINATION, GENDER REASSIGNMENT PROCESS, POSITIVE DISCRIMINATION, SEX WORK, SUPPORT, WORKING CONDITIONS
#10

“This was the only profession I could do. I was making jewelry, rings or bracelets and wearing them. When my older brother realized this, they thought that this was the only thing I could do. That’s why I got really successful. This is the reason I could stayed in Kapalıçarşı. Both my honesty and my craft. My personality never offend the eye of someone. I completed my transition in front of everyone’s eyes. I completed with my family.” (Serap, 51, Artisan)

COMING OUT, PROFESSION, WORKING LIFE
#11

“That transition process you mention is removing hairs, grow hair. Well, I started to do them when I was an intern. Naturally, I had many difficulties of them when I was attending to the court trials. You know the hearing rooms are open to lawyer to everyone. I try not to say my old name as it is a male name, we were called with that name. Even my name was there, one judge was calling me as ‘come in attorney (female)’. All the lawyers there, was laughing. Of course this was depressing me. There were lots of days that I left the hearing. There were days that reacted to the judge. The judges were keeping to say with their cynical attitude: ‘oh sorry I forgot to wear my glasses so please pardon me’” (Burçak, 35, Sex Worker)

DISCRIMINATION, GENDER REASSIGNMENT PROCESS, TRANSPHOBIA, WORKING LIFE
#12

“Sometimes they need a transsexual performer. We are going to help them and to earn money as well. But unfortunately we hear this kind of conversations ‘look there the t-girl arrived, travestite came.’ I even received indecent proposals.” (Müge, 36, Actress)

TRANSPHOBIA, VERBAL HARASSMENT, WORKING CONDITIONS
#13

“Well after the things I had because of my gender, they decided to expel me from the school. I got kicked out of the school. Then I had another case so I had to go back to school. I got back then as I am that thing The Chamber of Electrical Engineers did not gave me the authority to sign in that period in 82’. They did not register me. As I was not registered, even though I graduated from electrical engineering, I didn’t have the right to sign (projects) so I couldn’t get any job. It was a period that I was not working.” (Akdeniz, 55, Secretariat)

DISCRIMINATION, EDUCATION, GENDER REASSIGNMENT PROCESS, JOB APPLICATION
#14

“For example me, I never got raped, never got beat up in my neighborhood but I was working at the radio. They were seeing me at television, they were not seeing at the theatre but there was this child artist etiquette on me. So all my feminine acts were still considered as artist kid. I was doing clown. Or all the children watched my plays. They were applauding me when I come to the street. Isn’t it always that way, you applaud the one on the stage but spit on the one at the street. If there was another feminine gay passing in our street, they would beat him. But me I was the artist kid of the neighborhood, not a homosexual, not a bad one. I always been considered as a good boy thanks to theatre.” (Türkan, 36, Actress)

ACCEPTANCE, PROFESSION, VISIBILITY