Navigate Your Trans Dating Life with Flair, Dignity, and No Apologies

Last Updated 14.11.2022
5 min read

Dating is always a complex situation. You have to explore the “field” of prospects, make a decision to date one or more of them, have those dates, either in person or online at first, put your best foot forward, see if you have enough chemistry and common interests, etc., and then decide whether to continue dating or not. All of this takes time, energy, and certainly some self-confidence.

Now throw in the additional fact that you are transgender, and the situation has just become more complex. As Angelica Koch, happiness & relationship expert at Taimi and certified life and relationship coach, states, “Being trans is a beautiful part of who you are but navigating through the dating world can leave you with all sorts of questions floating around in your mind.”

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Table of Content

    The Biggest Looming Question

    The first one that will come to mind is if and when you tell a date that you are transgender. This is a highly personal and individual decision and should be weighed carefully, depending on your situation. Here are some things to think about:

    1. If you are dating online, you might want to reveal that you are transgender and where you are in the transition process, if at all. In this way, your potential matches will be known upfront, and there will be no awkwardness, at least in the beginning.

    2. If you are dating online or in person, and you have fully transitioned, do you want to wait and see if a relationship develops before you reveal your background?  Or do you want to notify up front? There are pros and cons to each option. If you go the upfront route, your date may decline without getting to know you for the amazing person you are. If you wait, that date may feel somewhat betrayed by not knowing upfront. 

    There is no right answer to this question. You have to get a feel for what is best for you, not them. What are you comfortable with? That’s really the only right answer here. Koch agrees but adds this tip, “It's important to move through dating at the pace you are comfortable with. When you are ready to tell the person you are seeing that you are trans, I recommend finding a comfortable and quiet spot to do so.” 

    How do you disclose to a current or potential date that you are transgender?

    When you decide to let a date or dating prospect know that you are trans, it is important that you do it in the way that is most comfortable for you, not them. There is no right or wrong way to do this. You choose the time and place; you choose the method to be used. 

    Of course, if you are using an online dating app and have already disclosed the info, then there is no need for anything more. Anyone who connects with you is down with your identity.

    But if you are at the beginning of a dating relationship, or even in the middle of one, you might want to think about how you best communicate with that person and use that method.

    As Koch says, “There really isn't a wrong way to disclose your trans identity. You can do it through text, a phone call, or in person. If someone reacts in a toxic manner to the information you disclose, then it's important to remember that their reaction is a reflection of them, not you. You deserve a healthy and understanding partner who accepts every part of you.” If you get a negative reaction, move on.

    Your Date Knows You are Trans – Now What? 

    They may have lots of questions – that’s pretty common. Here are a few you might get:

    • When did you know you were in the wrong body?

    • Did you have sex before you transitioned? What was it like for you?

    • Do your sex organs work right? (if you have had surgery)

    • Do you have sex? What kind of sex do you have? And who do you have sex with?

    • What was the surgery like (if you have had surgery), or how do those hormones make you feel (if you are on hormone treatment)?

    • Do you plan on having surgery?

    • Are you sure you’re really transgender or do you think it’s just a phase?

    Notice how all of these questions are about the body and sex. Of course, your date may be curious. But if they are not asking about other things, like your job/career, hobbies, interests, and such, why are they really dating you?

    As for answering all of these questions? Well, that’s up to you. As Koch advises: “If you are not comfortable answering certain questions, then you don't have to, but do let them know that you are uncomfortable answering a certain question. You can maintain healthy and respectful boundaries while still disclosing any information you are wanting to disclose.”

    Above All, Be True to Yourself

    When young Hamlet was about to depart for the big city, he was given some key advice by the older and wiser Polonius: “This above all: to thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man…”

    These words have survived centuries and are a prime piece of advice for you. Being trans is a beautiful part of who you are. Embrace your identity, love who you are, and above all, do not apologize in any way for your identity.

    If you experience rejection, the problem is with them, not you. You are far more than your trans identity. You are a person of value, with goals, dreams, a work life, and a personal life that includes but also transcends your identity as trans. 


    Love yourself. And surround yourself with others who love who you are. 

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