When Caitlyn Jenner first made her transition from male to female, I filmed a segment at with her at her home, way on top of a hill in Malibu, for her show ( I am Cait). In our segment, there was some intensive voice and speech training that unfortunately never made it to air. I showed her videotape of herself appearing on Diane Sawyer’s 20/20 interview and analyzed it. I relayed to her which speech, voice, and body language patterns were masculine and feminine and what she needed to work on. She seemed very receptive. We then did some speech, body language, and vocal exercises. The story line was that I was supposed to tell her not to have surgery on her vocal cords, which she was supposedly considering in order to sound more feminine. During our shoot, I told her that surgery was not a good idea. I also told her that there may be some dangers associated with the surgery that could harm her voice in the long run and that she instead, needed to do a regimine of vocal and speech and body language exercises. I also shared this in the confessional.
The segment never made it on air on the first season. Instead of me, they were able to secure Kim Kardashian, to discuss Caitlyn’s voice and the prospect of surgery. Therefore, the storyline was now covered by Kim. So, producers told my agent at the time, that they would like to have me on the second season. This didn’t happen as the show changed it’s course and was now more along the lines of road trips with Caitlyn and several of her fellow transgender friends.
But shortly after our session, there was press released where Caitlyn apparently said she hated her voice and sounded like a man. I immediately sent Cailyn a letter delivered to her via messenger. In it, I shared that she should not be depressed about sounding like a man because voice therapy couldn’t be achieved in just one session. I encouraged her by saying she needed intensive therapy over time in order to see results. After all, she was speaking like a man for 65 years, so there were many new feminine speech and voice habits she needed to learn. I let her know that I would be there to help her with this very important aspect of her transition.
I never heard back from Catilyn or anyone else on her staff. I did hear from a friend that that Caitlyn may have been seeing someone who was transgender, who was coaching her to make the vocal transition. But that coach apparently did not have the same credentials or experience in working with hundreds of transgendered clients as I did. Personally, I thought that was like “the blind leading the blind.” It was certainly not because the person was transgender, but because of their lack of qualifications and expertise .
At any rate, as long as Caitlyn was getting some type of help and making some type of progress to help her with her transition, that was all that really mattered to me. Whether or not I was working with her, or appearing on her show, was not important. Her being happy and successful in making her transition is all that mattered to me.
As time passed, as I began to see and hear Caitlyn on talk shows, award shows, interviews and speaking on her own show. I was very disappointed. If she was getting speech and voice and body language training from her new coach, who was allegedly transgender, it was clearly not working. My initial concerns were right. The person helping her did not have all the tools and experience to effectively help Caitlyn. In all fairness to her coach, maybe it was Caitlyn who wasn’t doing what she was supposed to do in order to make that vocal, verbal, and nonverbal transition.
As I would observe Caitlyn on these shows, her voice was indeed masculine. She did not incorporate any of the inflection exercises I suggested -to go up on adjectives and at end of sentences and to have a more flowing breathy quality. Instead, her voice sounded raspy and gravely and very masculine. She didn’t draw out her vowels when she spoke , like she was told to do. Instead, she spoke in a clipped masculine manner like she did when she was Bruce Jenner. Facially, I encouraged her to smile- a more feminine facial gesture- which she rarely, if ever, did. I remember when I shared with her that she needed to smile more, she balked and said Kim ( Kardashian) never smiled. Body language wise I taught her to walk in a more feminine posture, which she clearly did not incorporate.
Instead, whenever I saw her on video or in photos, she appeared hunched over, taking huge steps and literally clumping around instead of the feminine walk I taught her. Needless to say, I was extremely disappointed.
She seemed more concerned about getting larger breasts and plumped out lips and changing her hairstyle.But all of those superficial things so not a woman make.
She first spoke publicly at the ESPY Awards, where she received the Arthur Ashe Courage award. There was a lot of controversy about whether or not she should receive the award. Her performance was not perfect, but it was a start. Based on what we worked on during our first speech and voice session, she did use inflection as instructed and she spoke slower. Her body language still need a lot of work though. Right after her speech, Catilyn issued a statement to the press that she hated the way she sounded on the ESPY Awards as she felt she sounded like a man.
She was rewarded by Glamour Magazine as being Woman of the Year, which was pretty absurd seeing that she had only been a woman for such a short time. Glamour obviously had their own agenda. By honoring Caitlyn, such a visible person, it helped increase their brand awareness. As she spoke about being a woman, she clearly did not appear to be comfortable in her own skin, which was understandable. Her voice and speech patterns seemed to me, to deteriorate from having any semblance of femininity. What Caitlyn has failed to realize is that speech and voice coaching and body language awareness takes time and “a stick- to- it -ness .”
When I tuned into the second season of her show to see how she was faring, I was extremely disappointed in her lack of progress and awareness of how she was sounding and moving. She did not sound feminine and did not move in a feminine manner. Her facial expressions were also very masculine.
In one cringeworthy episode where she supposedly was flirting with a man, it was uncomfortable to watch as she scrunched up her face and lips and finally patted him on the shoulder. Clearly, she still needs some major help if she really wants to be seen as female.
Other cringeworthy moments on her show were her nastiness and her bullying manner, when she spoke of her politics. It’s one thing to agree to disagree, but she approached it in a very masculine manner. She pointed and gestured as a man. Her voice was loud, forceful, and she refused to resect other’s opinions and listen to them.
As you can see by the body language of the other women on the bus, it indicated they were shocked. All of them had their mouths agape at Caitlyn’s behavior, while one of the transgendered friends just blocked her out with texting.
When Caitlyn appeared on Ellen and said she was not for gay marriage. Ellen almost lost it. This, along with her dismal behavior on her show, clearly indicated that Caitlyn is not ready for prime time.
She seems to have no clue as to what it means to be transgender. That is why so many in the LGBTQ community have loudly stated in the press that Caitlyn Jenner is not their spokesperson or that she is a joke as far as they are concerned. She does not appear to have a handle on their issues . In fact, one of her transgender friends on the show apparently had to school her as to what some of the issues were which the transgender community faces . Others have said that she is simply a man who likes to dress up in women’s clothing. This is a common comment made not only by members of the LGBTQ community, but among others who have witnessed her transition.
Personally, I don’t know if this is the case or not. I do know that out of the hundreds of transgender clients I have seen throughout the years, working on their voice is their number one concern in helping them transition. The next concern is the genital surgery, which most are eager to have as soon as they can afford it. For most of the transgender clients I have seen, there is not a lot of thinking or back and forth about whether to have or not have the surgery. Most that I have met can’t wait to have it done. To many, it is a final statement that they are are 100 percent sure about living their life as a woman with female reconstructed genitals and all.
I don’t know the status of Caitlyn’s genitals, but I do know the status of her voice and speech and body language, based on what I have observed. All I can say is that she is not like any of the transgender clients I have worked with, who worked diligently to change their voice and speech pattern.
The fact that her show is off the air will no doubt be a huge emotional blow to Caitlyn. Ever since she was Bruce the athlete, she has been in the public eye and has had a public forum. The Kardashians brought her to new generation and gave her a new audience as the bumbling dad. But when Caitlyn made her transition a new and more powerful, worldwide audience noticed her. Many applauded her bravery to come out at her age. But when they saw her on a regular basis, on her show, in the media, and on talk shows, positive thoughts about Caitlyn quickly changed to negative ones. The public didn’t like what they saw, what she said, or how she expressed herself. Instead of bringing people together, she appeared to alienate so many.
While she will have to lick her wounds and her bruised ego from her now defunct show, it may be the best thing to happen to her. She has a lot of work to do on herself and with her family. It is not enough to have photo ops with her daughters and step daughters and sons. There a lot of healing and communication that must take place. For many children who’s parents go through the transition, it is not easy. It is highly emotional and confusing. It is especially confusing for grandchildren, who’s parents may not want their children around Caitlyn, to further confuse them at such a young age. That may be why you rarely see Caitlyn around Courtney or Kim’s children.
It seemed for a while, based on their body language and what was written about them in the press, that Caitlyn and her gorgeous transgender friend Candis Cayne ,may have had some type of personal relationship. It appears that this may not be the case now as Candis has reported in the press that they haven’t seen one another in a while. If they have broken up or are no longer an item, or it was just a showmance (romance for the show) Caitlyn may also have a lot of emotional healing to do.
In my view, Cailyn needs the time to heal and to make her transition in peace without the glare of the camera, which is not healthy for her. She needs to be out of the spotlight for a while until she settles into her complete look without further surgeries to her being on public display. If she wants to fix her hands, feet, skin, hair, or genitals, she needs to do it away from camera’s prying eyes.
She needs to see her family in private and heal with them. She needs to spend time with her family in private. She also needs to re-evaluate who her friends are and who her family is. It is not uncommon for people who were once your family, to fall by the wayside. The reality is that some family members may not accept you and you have to deal with the emotional repercussions of it. She doesn’t need to deal with all the pain in front of a camera. She doesn’t need to have a phony on-camera relationship with family members where everything is fine and dandy, but in reality things are an emotional mess.
Caitlyn also needs the time to find out exactly what her purpose is in what is left of her life. It is clearly not being a spokesperson for the LBGTQ community as they are very upset by her views and lack of knowledge and awareness. Instead, she needs to think of something else to do, which really is of service to others . She needs to get out of her own self in my view and think about some poverty stricken children or families, and support them financially. Maybe she can set up college funds for deserving children who can’t afford tuition. Perhaps she can use her multimillions to set up a sports center for inner city kids. After all she was one of the world’s greatest athletes when she was a he . She needs to do something as a human being to help others, not as a transgender person. In the long run, it doesn’t matter whether you are a transgender person or not. It only matters what kind of person- what kind of human being you are.