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OH Talks: Meet Erin for International Women's Day #InspireInclusion

At Ottoman Hands, we happen to be an all-women team from around the globe. Today and everyday, we’re dedicated to Inspiring Inclusion and envisioning a gender-equal world free of bias, stereotypes and discrimination. Join us as we engage with remarkable women from our community to hear their stories and experiences with inclusion firsthand.

Meet our friend, Erin, an IT Systems Technician for a heritage organisation, who spoke to us of her experiences as a trans neurodivergent woman.


Erin is wearing the Buttercup Gold Flower Pendant NecklaceLyra Pearl Beaded NecklaceGold Northern Star Stud EarringsAmalfi Orange Cocktail RingDemetra Braided Stacking Ring


1. What's does inclusion mean to you?

I think inclusion is really important when it comes to your sense of self, if people aren’t calling you by the correct name or referring to you as you are, that will just leave you feeling hurt and pain. Whereas when people include you, make you feel welcome and accept you it gives you a really warm feeling inside. 

Often in society we get a sense of pushback from our peers, from the media or the government, but we have to fight back for our inclusion.


2. What has been your experience with inclusion so far?

I felt very included when I first came out as a trans woman at work, and people just accepted me for who I was, there wasn’t any pushback which I think is the key. Often in society we get a sense of pushback from our peers, from the media or the government, but we have to fight back for our inclusion.

I think when it comes to inclusion society as a whole is getting better, I was customer-facing a dad and his daughter at work, and the daughter referred to me incorrectly, but the dad made sure to correct her and educate her and explain to her that we exist, we are visible and we should be respected for who we are. I think that turned what could have been a very negative experience into a very positive one.

3. Did you feel represented when you were younger?

When I was younger, there wasn’t any trans representation in tv and media, and if there was it was seen as a joke really, it was used for laughs. Only recently, there have been major tv shows that show trans people positively.

Also, as an autistic person, when it comes to neurodivergent representation on the media, the characters were either a savant person, like a Sherlock Holmes or a Sheldon Cooper type where you know everything but have no social skills, or either seen as a child, and there’s no kind of in between.

In reality we are just people just like you, all we want to do is live our life and have fun, but there are extra barriers put in the way for us.

4. What would you like to see brands do more when it comes to inclusion?

I think representation is important. Sizing and shape is important. Often fashion has this cookie-cutter approach almost, without accepting people are different, with different sizes, shapes and without an ideal hourglass figure. 

Fashion and jewellery is how we express ourselves and how we get our personality across to people that don't know us. If you feel good and comfortable with what you're wearing then that confidence will also show to others.


This International Women's Day, we are proud to be supporting Brighton Women’s Centre. 
10% of every order on 8th March 2024 will be donated to BWC, who have been supporting self-identifying women in Sussex for over 45 years. 
Find out more about their work at

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