|Photo from Unsplash|
As I transitioned I envied the deep sultry feminine tones of movie star Jacqueline Bisset . In my mind she represented the ultimate in a voice someday I may be able to come close to. Naturally I never did but a girl can dream...right?
As the years rolled by and I felt I needed to present the world with a more feminine voice to match my increasingly feminine overall public presentation I did begin to think more and more about my voice. My method I used to try to overcome my feminine vocal problems came when I attempted what I called the "parrot" method.
In other words, what I tried to do was wait for another woman to speak to me and then try to mimic her tone and inflections the best I could. Seemingly this worked fairly well until I needed to be the first person to speak. Then what? If I said nothing I ran the risk of appearing unfriendly. Which I certainly did not want to do.
Then I tried the portable tape recorder method. I needed to have a recorder for work so why not put it to better use than boring old work and try to see how I sounded as a transgender woman. When I tried, I was a dismal failure with my fake falsetto I sounded terrible. Worse than if I was talking in my normal voice.
I finally decided to seek professional help when I learned I could get free assistance through the Veterans Administration. Going into the program I thought for sure I would be the only one seeking help for a feminine voice but I was wrong. The VA had an understanding and knowledgeable staff to aid me. I ended up making the long trip for nearly six months and learned many ideas of how women use a whole different inflection to communicate with. The end result was after learning the vocal basics I felt I could go forth in the world and at the least not draw tons of unwanted attention my way.
It was about this time I began to gain more and more confidence in my feminine self. I went back to my parrot method and incorporated what I had learned with my vocal lessons to put together what I felt was a passable feminine voice. The biggest problems I have now is projecting what I have perfected. In many cases I am too soft spoken to make my ideas known.
Long gone are the days of wanting to sound like "Jacqueline Bisset." I just want to do the best vocal presentation I can with what I have to work with. I still keep and refer to my "cheat sheets" or old homework my vocal teachers gave to me. So, I haven't given up in my pursuit of a more feminine voice. I always make sure also to make eye contact with the persons I am talking to to, to judge their reactions.
Unlike the rest of me, my voice remains very much a work in progress.