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If you do only one thing to help yourself while out in public, I would say it should be to relax. Let go of the fretting about how you might be being perceived and be yourself.

Learning this was so powerful that it changed my life for the better in ways that are hard to describe. You must earnestly not care one whit about public opinion and be ready to thumb your nose at it. I wish I had listened all those years ago when I first read this counsel but I don't think I was ready then because my road to self acceptance was not yet complete.

Passing is all well and good but it is overriden by confidence because unless you are absolutely flawless you won't pass for everyone. What you want instead is that quiet resolve that says you've arrived and are a whole and confident person. You may even pass perfectly right now but then have that lack of confidence conspire against you and have people detect there is something not quite right.

By all means, practice with the make up and the clothes but above all practice understanding who you are underneath first and then watch what happens.

Trans or not, this is universal. Be fierce; be yourself.


  1. I certainly agree that confidence is so important. But what it really comes down to is just being out and about as oneself, regardless of presentation, voice, whatever. I know you're rarely clocked Joanna and that's a blessing. It happens to me all too often and it still hurts.

    But hey, this morning I was on a flight to Phoenix for GCS/BA on Thursday, and sat next to a
    nice woman about my age. We chatted a little and it seemed to me that she didn't clock me even though she's an admitted Trump supporter. So that was nice.

    But it's so hard to develop that confidence. Reciting this mantra to myself helped a lot in the past: "Fear is kind of like a wall. and on the other side of the wall is a kind of freedom." Especially when I was fearful of using my voice I said that phrase to myself a half dozen times, and felt myself relax as I anticipated the freedom.

    1. The way I see this Emma it's that it is about just not caring at all and in that feeling finding yourself as a worthy person no matter what the guise. Once you arrive there everything else seems to just fall into place. People like nice people and that's it 😁


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