Passing is a pretty major concern, especially for late-age transition.
Some say screw cisnormative ideas of what it looks to be feminine, but for many of us that idea is a major force in our transition. We want to look into a mirror and see a girl or woman, as close to natural as possible.
This is problematic before and during HRT, especially in some parts of the world where they require fulltime living as the transitioning gender for a time before starting HRT. The inability to pass while doing that is nothing less than traumatic to the transitioning person.
Especially when you’re not out publicly yet. While on HRT, you can at least pass for your assigned gender for awhile, until you CAN pass as your preferred gender – at which point you come out. It really makes the transition smoother, both socially and personally.
And then there’s pronouns. I get two sets used on a regular basis – male pronouns IRL where I’m not out, and female pronouns online, where my virtual transition is nearly complete.
I get constantly misgendered in meatspace, but I can’t really complain because these people don’t know any better. I’m not out, I’m not presenting female. I can’t blame them.
It messes with my head.
I still have too much time to wait. Gotta get lasered. Gotta lose another 20kg. Gotta get hormones. Gotta get bits removed. Gotta get voice changed.
Maybe then I’ll pass. Maybe then I’ll be able to come out. Maybe then I can use the right pronouns in the real world.
Maybe I’ll look into the mirror and see myself.