I before E – accept it, for me

For those of you who don’t know, I’ve been a member of Slimming World for quite a while. Last week, I told my weigh-in lady about my trans secret. And this week, she nearly made me cry – because of the spelling of my name.

Ha ha! That was almost clickbait. Fear not, it was in a “tears of joy” kinda way. First, let me rewind a little. I joined Slimming World almost three years ago and took to it like a duck to water. Initially, I joined with Georgie, who took to it more like a fish to dry land. She later left, but I stuck with it.

My weight loss graph looks like a profile of the Alps – loads of ups and downs – but by last autumn, I’d lost 3st 8½lb. Don’t forget the half. I worked bloody hard for that half.

My Alp-esque weight loss chart to date

Over Christmas, I piled on about a stone. WINE! But, over the past couple of weeks, I’ve got back on it, weighed and measured everything, and counted every half-syn, keeping a careful log of everything on a spreadsheet.

And it’s worked – last week, I lost 5lb. This week, I lost 3½lb and was named Slimmer of the Week – well, joint SotW -someone else had lost the same amount.

Last Friday, I met my friends Jan and Debbie at Jan’s house. They’re both fellow Slimming World members. I told Jan about Andie months ago – and then the group’s consultant, Liza, a few weeks ago. Last week, it was Debbie’s turn. All three were fantastic, as I thought they would be.

Anyway, Debbie has recently launched her own mobile manicure business, so I was at Jan’s to get mine done – for the second time, actually. Debbie didn’t know about me being trans the first time, though may have suspected.

I spilled the beans a couple of nights before we met, chatting on Facebook Messenger, and all went really well – water off a duck’s back (that duck again!) – no problem at all. She also asked if she could tell her best pal, Heidi, and I said yes. Again, that all went fine, and Heidi – also a SW member – sent me a lovely message.

I before E – I’m getting to the point – bear with me!

Now, Debbie and Heidi are usually the ladies on the computers at group. What usually happens is that you pay Heidi – or give her your Countdown card in my case – and then wander over to Debs to be weighed. Both of them record your details on the computer system. Sometimes Liza gets involved if one or the other are off.

Nails by Debs – suitably pink and girly without being OTT

Anyway, as I was having my nails done (three coats of pale pink gel with a basecoat and topcoat, since you ask) I told Debbie about this blog and asked if she could make out any future Slimming World certificates to Andie rather than my male name – and to tell Heidi the same thing. Yep was the reply – no bother.

And so we fast-forward to tonight. As I say, I’d been “angelic”, which is the word used by members if they’ve had a good week. I’d had a bottle of wine last Saturday night, but made sure I kept my syns super low on the other six days.

After going round everyone in the meeting (maintain for Debs, pound on for Heidi – but after a marvellous weekend, minus one-and-a-half for Jan), we got to the Slimmer of the Week bit.

I’d been doing the calculations in my head and knew that the other lady and I were neck and neck – we’d both lost 3½lb. But you never know if someone else has weighed in and then not to stayed to group. If they’d lost 4lb or more, they’d win.

Anyway, we both won – hoorah! Lots of fruit and tins of veggies shared between the two of us. But I’d completely forgotten about my conversation with Debs about the certificate. Liza handed it to me, I looked at it and was literally open-mouthed. I had to cover my mouth with my hand. I felt really emotional.

I’ve won a fair few certificates over the past three years – from Slimmer of the Week and Slimmer of the Month to Club 10 and all the Body Magic ones (bronze, silver, gold and double platinum). And they’d all been made out to my male name. I’ll say it now – Andy. Yeah, massive difference, eh?!

This time it stated Andie – and then my surname. It was the first time I’d ever seen the two names written down together before – whether on a computer, a printout or in handwriting, as this was.

My first Slimming World certificate with Andie, instead of Andy. I shall treasure it.

So not only had I won SotW, I’d got a certificate with my girl name on for the first time – and I’d seen it used with my surname for the first time. I could have cried for joy. It looked so darned perfect!

I helped pack away all the chairs while Debs weighed in a couple of ladies who’d arrived late (including Jan – she was looking at a fireman’s hose!) and then gave her a massive thank-you hug. Jan got one, too, just for being Jan.

I love my friends so much. I also told Ellen, a former colleague of mine, last week over coffee. Again that couldn’t have gone better – she’s been an absolute brick over the past few days, reading the blog, asking questions, asking about pronouns, that sort of thing.

In terms of Slimming World, four people now know. I’d love to come out to the whole group, but I’m not that brave – I don’t know if I ever will be. While I think most people would be fine, I don’t really want to do it in front of people who may be new and might only come for a week or two – and may be tempted to blab.

Why do people do come and go like that? Three years for me – man and boy! Well, not exactly man and boy, but you know what I mean. Apart from losing weight and feeling a darned site healthier than I did this time in 2014, I’ve made some amazing friends and fallen head over heels in love with Slimming World.

There’s more to tell on that matter – but that’s a story for another blog post.

Andie xxx


5 thoughts on “I before E – accept it, for me

  1. question for you andie– and apologies if its a doozy: today, someone in the trans community complained about an article about the legitimacy of the term “cis-gendered.” im not trying to say cis-gendered people dont exist, i have a question that is more specific than that. probably the best outline is the following:

    1. **if a non-cis person outwardly appears cis, is it fair to say they are cis-gendered?** (or do they have the right to self-identify as something else? i would say it is unfair to say they are cis-gendered.)

    2. **if a person has not come to a conclusion about whether they are cis- or not yet, is it fair to decide for them until they are done self-questioning?** (i.e. is it fair to call that person “cis” until they argue against it?)

    3. (if the answer to the first two **questions** is “no”), is it ever a good idea to “cis-gender a person” as a verb? or is it better to avoid cis-gendering a person, in order to avoid mis-gendering a person?

    mostly what im questioning is whether the term “cis-gender” is ever an entirely fair call to make on behalf of another person. we dont know what questions they have inside, we dont know how certian they are, any individual may have suspicions about their gender theyve chosen to ignore– thus far– and may at any time start to question those things again in the present or future. im not implying that an awareness of being trans is usually the sort of thing to appear out of nowhere, (i wouldnt know.) but if self-identity is necessarily everyones right– should the term “cis-gender” really ever be applied to a person who hasnt already claimed it?


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