Harriet Green is the first transgender soldier in the Texas Army National Guard to have her gender fully recognized. When she came out to her superiors, the Department of Defense didn’t yet have any guidelines in place for transgender open service.
“I came out to my unit in 2015. It was kind of under charged circumstances,” she says.
A sergeant mentioned to Green that the Texas Legislature’s efforts to pass a bathroom bill – a law that would require individuals to use a restroom corresponding to the gender on their birth certificate.
“He was in support of that bill and so we got into a pretty heated discussion,” Green says. “I was closeted at the time.. But over the course of that conversation, I ended up coming out.”
Green says that the support of the women in her unit helped allow her to serve openly.
“The women of my unit actually all stood up together of their own accord. They didn’t come to me first,” Green says. “They said, ‘Sergeant Green is one of us. She’s our sister, she belongs in this tent.’”
Written by Emma Whalen.