I know that there is much controversy on vocal surgery however I am seriously considering this option. In fact I have a consultation with a surgeon on October 17th on the pros and cons of vocal surgery. That being said I would very much welcome to the opinion(s) of other people with respects to vocal surgery. I have done voice therapy and I have acheived limited success in acheiving a genuinly female voice.
I am determined to do whatever it takes to change my voice to a female voice and I am willing to accept the risks that are associated with surgery to acheive my goal. My consultation on October 17th is in Montreal with the surgeon who did my SRS surgery last year. Nevertheless I would like to get recommendations on surgeons in the U.S who do male to female vocal surgeries.
Hi Rachele can you keep me informed on who you meet for vocal surgery? i need it bad it's the only thing messing me up I have not had srs yet
Sincerely, Linda K
I visited my surgeon on Monday October 17th and I can tell you that it was a very sobering meeting. My surgeon tells me that out of 5 patients who pursue vocal surgery 1 will be satisfied, 1 will be dissatisfied and 3 will be "somewhere in the middle". As such I don't beleive that the surgery is worth the risk and the cost. I therefore re-enrolled myself in vocal therapy and I am having some success - the hard part is remembering to "keep-up" my voice!
I have the same problem and would like to see the answers you get. I would extend my search for surgeons to everywhere to here from anyone that has had surgery.
Hi, I am Kelly Ann Michaels and i had DR. B do my SRS and voice sur. 4 years ago and I am very happy with the result. If you want to speek with me e-mail me @ email@example.com . We can exchange info. Oh there is another gal in denver that had a US sur. do hers, I will try to find out her DR. Have a great day.
I would love to hear your voice and to get more information about your outcome. I desperately need something done about my voice.
The Voice Doctor (Dr. John Thomas) mentioned below actually publishes real data on the changes he has seen with his voice techniques. I also sat in on one of his sessions during SCC this year. His best samples were absolutely amazing... He is also the first to tell you what his surgery will do or not do... It will raise pitch (in almost all cases)... and perhaps improve resonance... and reduce the size of the Adam's Apple. He'll also show you how poorly other surgeries work out... He'll also tell you that his surgery has had one patient get worse. Real data from a a very open doctor.
My suggestion is that you go to one of his education seminars to hear the results and get a detailed explanation of what he can do for those interested in his surgery. One of the cool things he does is vocal tuning of the vocal cords through laser use.
I hate going to speech therapy and making incremental changes... But when I look back at the progress that I have made in time I have spent with them, I am amazed at the differences. I posted samples of before and after voices a few blogs back...
James Thomas seems very personable an competent. His feminization laryngoplasty at http://www.voicedoctor.net/Surgery is better than CTA, but has risks and a long recovery time where your voice will sound worse and you have to be careful else you will undo the surgery. One of its big differences is it tries to help resonance too which other techniques don't.
Toby Mayer at http://www.bevhills.com/tg/ claims a > 95% success rate in raising pitch in several hundred patients.
There are so many things that make your voice sound feminine besides pitch.
Resonance is the key to a feminine voice and every surgeon I have heard (except one) hasn't achieved any appreciable results in that area.
Intonation (varying the pitch within a sentence), pacing, word choice, using pitch to emphasize the important things you are speaking about and not volume, pronouncing your consonants fully, more animated head movements and hand gestures, lowering your pitch at the end of a declarative sentence, and so much more... NONE of these are things surgery will help you with in any real way. These are the things that voice therapist can teach you.
I so hate that it has taken me 2 1/2 years to get a fairly decent voice, but the proof to me is when I switch back to my old voice and watch how shocked people are at how incongruent my old voice is with the new me. I switch back now only with difficulty and typically only to show other TG gals how important working on your voice can be.
If you only remember one thing from this comment, it should be this: The best way to get a feminine voice is to achieve resonance. It is far more important that pitch...
Hi Caroline! Do you know if those online courses being offered really might help. I mean, the ones from Kathe Perez, Andrea James, etc. They aren't too expensive but I don't want to waste my money either. Right now I don't think I can pay for voice therapy (if I have some extra money it's going towards laser and getting some more decent clothes... voice therapy comes next for me, but I want to do something NOW about my voice, too). Do you think following those courses and practicing the exercises they offer would be helpful to develop that all too elusive feminine resonance? Do you have any specific tips?
I'm just starting my journey and I'm really worried because my voice sucks. And when I try to raise the pitch I can do that but it doesn't sound feminine either (it sounds either like Mickey Mouse or like a parody of a woman, not authentic).
Thanks a lot in advance! :)
Dr. Thomas (I checked his site again and his first name is James.) said at Be-All that his laryngoplasty reduces the Adam's apple twice as much as shaving because he plays with your vocal cords. That appeals to me because I have a prominent one. One of the famous FFS doctors said (at SCC I think) that your body tells doctors when to stop shaving. I forget exactly what the clue was; may be color change or resistance. So I'm surprised to hear people say today that their surgeon went too far and ruined their voices.
I took ten free classes given by a MtF speech therapist. Her job is helping kids for other speech issues. This was her first TS class but she did this in part to help herself, though she sounds pretty good. She used material from various sources including Kathe Perez. I got Kathe's CDs at Be-All. I found the live instructor more helpful. Email me if any of you want the three CDs in her regular course plus the Beyond the Fundamentals cost at less than full price.
I have a naturally deep and booming male resonant voice. I can make it feminine with focus and practice. It's hard to do that because I'm not full-time. However I think I can maintain it for three speeches I plan to give for my company Toastmasters club.
Speech 8 wants us to to visual aids. My visual aids will include what I wore to my first ever Pride Parade in any capacity last year in Chicago (The denim miniskirt in my pics with our company T-shirt). That will be the first time any of my club members see me dressed except for three members. When I told one I had something special planned, she asked if she could help. I asked if she could help with makeup. Turns out she's a licensed cosmetologist! I saw her these last two Saturdays. On New Year's Eve she was finishing another club member. Neither mentioned anything about my feminine dress! The other member saw me dressed because we marched together in the Pride Parade.
Speech 10 wants us to inspire. I plan to wear the hot red dress in my pictures and give this speech during our membership drive meeting. We will advertise it in our company newsletter and we'll try to send emails to all our employee resource groups, so it should get big attendance! I'll talk about how Toastmasters can improve your speaking and leaderships skills, If I can wear makeup and a dress and speak in public, surely prospective members can overcome their fear of public speaking!
Speech 6 wants us to use vocal variety. I'm saving this for our International Speech Contest. My theme will be how to do that by improving your female voice, because women have much better vocal variety. I'l wear just a touch of female clothes and makeup, but will have lots of fun playing with my voice! I'm not sure if I would switch to a dress if I keep winning and advancing to higher contest levels.