Reflection on the Movie, "The Danish Girl"

For those of you who may not have seen it yet, the recently released movie, "The Danish Girl" has stirred quite a few emotions and many comparatives to not only my own life as a transgender woman, but to many others like myself as well.  Although this movie was based upon a true story and took place in the 1920's, the commonalities of experiences between the main character and my own personal experiences resounds so closely and so similarly that it was emotionally unnerving to watch and to see what was almost like my own life flashing before me on the silver screen.

If you need to catch up and haven't heard of this movie then watch this trailer before reading further....

A friend remarked in a post that watching "The Danish Girl" was like looking in a mirror. It truly was, at least for me, a nearly spot on reflection of my own life. The timelines and the details may have been slightly different but the overall story was practically the same. My spouse had to watch as the person I played a role as disappeared inexorably.

Truth be told, there never was a person who had ever played a role as expected but, rather, had always been giving off non-ignorable hints that she was a woman. The mirror image at the time gave the impression that I was just sensitive, just different, just emotional and just unique in the gender role I play acted. Just as in the movie, she watched the joy as the person she knew became happier, more content and ever more real as a person than she had ever been.

At the same time as she took joy in seeing my happiness blossom, she had to watch as the person she thought she knew faded away into a shadow of memories and to lament the death of the person that was....rather, the facade of the person that was. The movie portrayed these perspectives from both sides, both people, so very well. For me, that was the most emotionally intense time because it really hit home to watch as they grappled with the concept of loving each other yet not being in love with each other. Intangible and as elusive as that variance may seem, it is the hardest struggle imaginable and one even more difficult perhaps than an actual death of a spouse....because that person is still alive, still caring, still there....but at the same time, is gone forever in plain sight.

Go see this movie if you have not.  If you are a transgender person, it may just help you to understand yourself a little bit more.  If you are not transgender, then you will be presented with an introduction to an understanding of the emotions, the journey of self discovery, the pain of hiding and the joy of feeling whole as a person as only a transgender person can see it.  You will not leave the theater without being changed, if even in the slightest of ways.


  1. Everything you have said is so true. I met my wife at a time when I was still suppressing my inner self. There were hints[we were working in South America] that there was more to tell. When I came out cleanly to my Venezuelan wife 11 years ago that I was transgender and needed to live out the rest of my life authentically,there was disappointment in that she felt she had been tricked..She "never signed up for this" is the cool way to put it. However,the dynamics of our marriage have changed and we live as three girls together. My daughter is now 14 and has been everywhere with me since she was 5. Things are great right now,tomorrow,we never know..


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