[Target's Transgender Policy may be a new thing but as far back as 2008, their trans-inclusiveness was already in action. My daughter Ashlie (aka Alice) was struggling at the time, to present an exterior that matched her interior, and we were met with nothing but kindness and respect in the Target stores in our (red county/blue state) hometown.One of those visits appears in The Complicated Geography of Alice and I've shared it below.
Thank you TARGET, for standing up for families like ours. 🙂
“Is everything alright?” the woman folding sweaters at the entrance of the Target dressing room asks.
“Oh, we're fine,” I halfheartedly assure her, standing in the narrow hall between cubicles while Alice cries loudly within the stall.
The woman looks unconvinced.
“Teenage girls and jeans,” I explain, rolling my eyes. Then I lean against the door and whisper, “Al, put your pants back on and bring everything out. We can do this another day.”
“B-b-but I need jeans!” she wails.
After a bit, the weeping downgrades to sniffles, and I hear her moving around inside the stall. I smile at the attendant, pacing nervously while I wait.
It was brave of us to try this in the first place, marching into the dressing room, daring anyone to try and stop us.
What we hadn't counted on when picking out items to try on was that Alice has shot up another two inches and thinned out in the last few months, so every pair of jeans she took into the dressing room is too big, too short or doesn't fit in the crotch.
We don't talk about Alice's crotch much. Mostly we talk around it—a thing that must be managed for the time being, but too intimate to be discussed freely.
I am convinced that the dressing room attendant is preparing to call security when Alice finally emerges with the offending jeans balled up in her fist. I take them, fold them clumsily and set them on the table as we exit the dressing room.
“Good luck,” the attendant calls after us, instantly making me feel silly for my visions of being dragged, kicking and screaming, out of the store.
“I broke another nail in there,” Alice sniffles, holding up her hand with three of five nails broken or missing. “I think I should tear 'em all out and just use the ones that you put on yourself with glue.”
“You want drugstore fingernails?”
“Yeah. Then I can fix them myself, and if they're bugging me I can pop 'em off and use them again later.”
“You realize this information would have been helpful six weeks and sixty dollars ago, right?”
“Sorry,” she says, with a grimace. “I didn't know.”
“Well, why don't we go get your fingernails sorted out, and then, if you're up for it, we'll take another stab at the jeans?”
“And bras,” she says. “I need another bra. And you could use some perk.”
“Just sayin',” she holds her hands up and manages to grin.