Being tall should not be a hang up for transition

Christine Penn
5 min readFeb 5, 2024
Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

I’m 6'5" tall, and yes, I will admit that it caused some hesitation/used it as an excuse for a while not to transition. How many 6 feet plus women are out there? Certainly, there are far more 6 feet plus men; right? And, while that may be true statistically, what I was missing is that there are plenty of tall women out there as well — I was just not noticing them. Rare, maybe, but not necessarily standing out as odd either.

As you can see, I have already linked the issue to gender. And when you combine transition in the mix; it adds another form of psychological battle to get through.

Anyone who struggles with a problem, has a tendency to micro focus on it’s issues. At least, initially, concentrating more on the negative than any of the positive. And it can be hard to break through.

Being tall may have made me think twice about transitioning, but it did not stop me. What I did not realize prior, was how much influence it would have on the interactions I had in society. And how it would play a role in my transition experience. I can tell you that tall people look for each other, but gender plays a big role in those interactions. Tall men don’t talk to each other much; tall women do! Whether I wanted it to or not, this transitioned as well. Interactions ramped up more and more as I progressed through transition (and became more passable).

It’s almost a guarantee that if you find another tall woman, and they recognize you as a woman, they are going to want to share notes. And also don’t be surprised that other people may ask you too about being tall. I’ve had more mothers of tall teenage daughters come up to me and ask where I buy my clothes (in a way, asking for help), coaches stating that they wished they had me on their girls basketball teams, and other tall related scenarios. You’d be surprised how often this happens. In the beginning of transition, I dreaded these interactions, but I learned to love them and today don’t mind them at all — I'm happy to help.

Did Medical issues contribute?

When I was 16, at a medical appointment, my doctor’s noted a delay in puberty. Puberty turns on hormones and starts the development of our secondary sexual characteristics. One of the side effects of the…

--

--

Christine Penn

Trans woman, parent, cyclist, software engineer, author, chef, and many other things.