The University of Connecticut has a voice training program for trans people...
In A Word: Transgender Transition Through Speech
June 29, 2015
By: Sheila Foran & Bret Eckhardt
Communication happens in a gesture. A laugh. A choice of phrasing. Things that most of us never think about. But for individuals transitioning from one gender to another, speaking and acting in a way that supports their new identity can seem like a daunting challenge.
That’s where the speech-language pathologists at the University of Connecticut’s Speech and Hearing Clinic enter the picture.
Individuals seeking to adopt speech that sounds more feminine may feel particularly challenged, says Chase [Wendy Chase, clinic director]. The transition of male to female is complicated by biology. During puberty, a male’s larynx, or voice box, expands and the vocal cords become thicker and longer, which results in a deeper sound. Currently there is no medically approved intervention that can reduce the size of a person’s voice box.
Speech-language pathologists at the clinic help male to female clients pay particular attention to the rate of vibration of their vocal chords – commonly referred to as pitch – as well as all the other aspects of vocal retraining that they’ll need to feel successful, says Chase.