In a tight-knit office setting, the Original Poster (OP) finds herself in a perplexing conflict with Alexis, a colleague with starkly contrasting views. Tensions reach a boiling point during a seemingly harmless conversation about women’s sports, leading to an astonishing revelation anchored in a bathroom observation. As the room’s energy shifts, the unfolding events leave everyone questioning where the line between humor and insensitivity is drawn.
A Small Company Setting
At a modest-sized company of 15 people, OP, a 25-year-old woman, enjoys cordial relationships with her colleagues, save for Alexis, a 40-year-old with rigid social beliefs. She has been working at the company for 18 months now and has gotten to know her coworkers pretty well.
OP generally sidesteps topics that could incite disagreements with Alexis, such as politics, religion, gender identity, and the rights of underrepresented populations. However, conversations still sometimes drift into confrontational territory.
An Innocent Restroom Visit
After using the restroom recently cleaned by the janitorial staff, OP left the toilet seat up due to her decision to squat. OP was diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) as a teenager, exacerbated by the recent pandemic leading to her fear of germs.
Alexis awaits outside as OP exits, leading to a brief and seemingly inconsequential collision. OP nods on her way out, and Alexis hurries inside. They pass in the hallway later that day, and OP is greeted with a noticeable scowl.
Alexis’s Cold Shoulder
For a fortnight, Alexis’s attitude takes a self-righteous tone. Although it’s not entirely surprising, given her nature, OP keeps her observations to herself. Over lunch, a chat about women’s sports takes a nasty turn when Alexis insinuates that people like OP tarnish the sport’s reputation.
Perplexed, OP questions Alexis’s vague comment. Given her lack of athletic prowess, OP wonders if Alexis’s cutting remark concerns her height, which would still be odd. Knowing Alexis harbors several unpopular opinions, she wonders which one she has triggered.
The Cringe-Worthy Conversation
OP has never been athletically inclined at any age, so she asks, “Do you mean tall people?” Alexis says with a glare of disgust, “No, ‘women’ that are still biologically men.” The jaw drops on one of the coworkers at the table. Everyone is stunned.
A Bizarre Assumption
Alexis clarifies further, making it clear that OP is biologically male. Shocked, OP finds the comment baseless, as she’s a cisgender woman and appears unequivocally feminine. She has long dark hair and an hourglass shape.
In what she believes to be an irrefutable argument, Alexis points to the raised toilet seat as evidence of OP’s hidden identity. Taken aback, OP struggles to grasp Alexis’s logic, which seems anchored in a peculiar bathroom observation and a triumphant smile.
The Simple Truth
Attempting to clear the confusion, OP laughs and then explains her personal bathroom choice. “I squatted,” she remarks, suggesting the act wasn’t a gender statement but a hygiene choice. She thinks the leap from a tiny observation to conviction is way out of proportion, even for Alexis.
Lightening the Tension
In a room pulsating with unease, OP tries to inject humor into the awkward interaction. She jests about Alexis’s potentially unhygienic public restroom habits by sitting on the dirty seat where everyone else has sat to do their business.
Alexis’s Unexpected Reaction
Alexis’s face blushes a deep shade of red as she is caught off guard and embarrassed for being “exposed” for her bathroom choices. Mumbling defensively and overwhelmed, Alexis dissolves into tears and swiftly departs, leaving a room full of colleagues in stunned silence.
Opinions split among the coworkers. Some feel OP’s jest was in bad taste, while others view her comment to navigate a tense situation. While some colleagues chastise her, OP stands her ground, believing she was merely reacting to a tricky situation that Alexis instigated.
Reflections on the Encounter
OP notes that if she were a trans person, the conversation could have taken a different turn and wound up on the Human Resources Department’s doorstep. As she was not, and the whole thing was just a misunderstanding, Alexis didn’t bear the same level of scrutiny.
Was The Woman’s Behavior Appropriate?
OP posts her story online for feedback and perspective from the public. The readers in the forum had a lot of mixed views on the matter.
One reader said, “So she can handle everyone knowing she’s transphobic but can’t handle people knowing she sits when she pees?”
Another Commenter Thinks
Another responder wrote, “Why would any woman choose to pee like this when a toilet had just been cleaned and disinfected?”
A Third View on The Story
A different person stated, “I know girls who do this. They don’t want to sit on the seat if they are forced to go in the subway restrooms or some dirty place. I’m not sure why this is so fantastical.”
A Final Perspective on the Matter
Another reader commented, “This woman tried to out someone she considered transgender, not fully understanding how dangerous that can be. HR. Right now.”