I’ve noticed that the facial hair seems to make a world of difference in how people read me when they see me. Though I can’t exactly grow a beard, it’s gotten much more substantial. It seems that since the facial hair growth has increased, almost everyone who doesn’t know me and sees me reads me as male, which is exciting. People who already knew me still sometimes have trouble despite the facial hair. I guess that shouldn’t be surprising. Even a significant amount of hair can’t wipe out years of memories or erase how you’ve thought of someone the whole time you’ve known them. I must admit that I was hoping the facial hair would help with people who already knew me, but I think the only solution to that one is time.
What’s interesting is that, even though my voice has dropped a lot as well, I’m still being read as female mostly on the phone. I think it must be something to do with speech patterns, though most people I talk to don’t seem to have ever noticed a difference between male and female speech patterns. But I know my voice has gotten lower, though I think I sometimes instinctively move to the upper part of my registry. It is one of the aspects I’m having the most trouble with, because how I speak is very much ingrained in me. I believe a lot of mtfs end up doing voice therapy because estrogen doesn’t do as much of a job raising the voice as testosterone does lowering the voice. However, the consensus for ftms seems to be, “Try to speak in a monotone.” Whenever I need to express emotion or add meaning with the tone of my voice, I seem to slip into what I assume is a more “female” speech pattern, but I’m not sure. Time for some google/youtube research, whoo!
I’m also struggling with whether or not to correct people on the phone if they misread me. Especially when we’re talking about people who I don’t know who I will never know, it seems unnecessary, but at some point I feel it will become more necessary. I can’t just let people misgender me forever, but I don’t really know when it will become worth everyone’s discomfort.
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