Tommy Dorfman Opens Up About Her Transition


| LAST UPDATE 08/19/2022

By Lia Thomson
trangender tommy dorfman netflix
@tommy.dorfman via Instagram

Tommy Dorfman portrayed Ryan Shaver in the popular Netflix series 13 Reasons Why. And roughly after the show ended, in July 2021, Tommy came out and reintroduced herself as a transgender woman in an interview with Time. More than a year later, Tommy has admitted that being in the teen drama series delayed her transitioning. Here's the tea.

"For a year now, I have been privately identifying and living as a woman — a trans woman," Tommy opened up last year. "I've been living in this other version of coming out where I don't feel safe enough to talk about it, so I just do it. But I recognize that transitioning is beautiful. Why not let the world see what that looks like?" She told the publication that she would be keeping the same name because she was named after her uncle, who sadly passed away a month after she was born.

tommy dorfman transgender interview
 David Moir/Netflix/Kobal/Shutterstock
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Back in 2017, she was cast to play Ryan Shaver, but at the time, she was struggling with gender dysphoria. Recently Tommy spoke to Rachel Bilson and cohost Olivia Allen on the Broad Ideas podcast. There she opened up about how her confusing feelings were pushed aside for the sake of the role. "I think because my work being so tied to my body and like face and like identity, and whatever I'd been identified as, it delayed some of my growth and maturation in my mid-20s," Tommy added. "I also think I made decisions that were just not aligned with how I really was or what I wanted - but out of fear."

Tommy didn't hold back when it came to sharing how she felt during filming. "For me, I feel like I kind of got stuck in time for a minute," she continued. "When it came to anything around dysphoria or gender or stuff that had already been really present, I was like, 'Nope, that's not for now, I'm working." She finished by saying, "I think if I hadn't booked that job, I would've started transitioning a lot sooner." So when it came time to go through with the decision of transitioning, she was worried it would affect her career, but then she realized she was "no longer interested in playing 'male' characters." Lucky, now, as a 30-year-old actress, Tommy feels like she can be her true self. Check out the rest of the podcast here. And stay tuned for updates.

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