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TransEthics: When you first came out as transgender, how did your friends and family react?

Jelena Vermilion: When I first came out as Trans, my folks and family were decently accepting. They all had their own biases and preconceptions about trans people, so obviously it wasn’t perfect. I can say they’ve tried to learn and understand those things. I also think that given who I was growing up, they sort of expected something like it, given my nature.

I was a pretty interesting kid… I played with dolls, read books, built things, destroyed things, did puzzles, watched Sailor Moon, etc… Without giving too much credence to the binary, I was deemed pretty “feminine” growing up by mainstream cis standards. I was very sensitive. I cried a lot growing up, and I always seemed to get picked on. I imagine my parents thought I would be gay before they thought I would be a girl. Continue reading

Trans Networking: Lisa Marie Maginnis on Homelessness, Survival Sex Work, and Technology

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TransEthics: Tell us a little about Hypatia Software.

Lisa Maginnis: The main goal of the Hypatia Software Organization is to provide assistance to experiencers of transmisogyny in need, as well as make talented and professional software engineers out of those who are interested in the mentorship program. Hypatia Software Organization is a mentorship and benefits program run for trans people, by trans people. Because of this we prioritize empathy and understanding for our members. We are very anti-carrot and stick, mentorship is never a requirement to have access to benefits. To be a member, you simply must experience transmisogyny. That said, anyone is welcome to volunteer with us!  Continue reading

Trans Satanic: Sadie Satanas on Religion, Kink, and Polyamorous Marriage

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TransEthics: I understand that you’re married. How long have you and your wife been together, and when in your relationship did you come out as transgender to her?

Sadie Satanas: My spouse and I were married on June 6th 2006 (6/6/6), but we’ve been together for 15 years. We are poly, but committed. I came out to her about 4 years ago after we moved from the Bible belt of Oklahoma to the Bay Area.

TE: How did that initially affect your relationship? Continue reading

Trans Differential: Halley Wynn on Trans Bodies, ‘Deadly Babes’, and Ethics in Sex Work

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TransEthics: Your Twitter profile says you are a “muscle t-girl”… would you care to expand on what that means to you?

Halley Wynn: Well, there are two separate but inclusive fields of thought I have on that: The personal and the political. I like fitness, weight lifting, different movement arts and working out in general. Participating in these activities generally gives you increased muscle tone and increased mass depending on the type and volume of activity, because of this I identify as muscly.

Now for my political opinions, I feel like femme people but especially trans femme folks are incentivized to avoid muscle mass or lots of tone. Being that it is supposedly a masculine trait, and therefore being “overly” fit is akin to outing yourself according to some.  So I am a trans femme fitness enthusiast: Muscle T-girl. Continue reading

Trans Sadism: Stacy Sadistic on Domming, Narratives, and Transition

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TransEthics: How old were you when you started pursuing sex work?

Stacy Sadistic: I was 23 when I first started doing things for money, but I had been in the fetish scene for many years before that. I had a girlfriend who introduced me to the fetish world. She took me to lots of fetish events, and introduced me to new things and new people. I grew up in a small town, so I was kind of repressed. I reluctantly got into cross-dressing at her request, but soon found that I really enjoyed it. We had sort of a switch dynamic, but after many years together, I realized she was abusive, so I left.

Its funny, because lots of people told me that I was “naturally submissive,” and would never be a good dominant. I don’t think BDSM is something I would have sought out naturally on my own volition, but after getting into it, I found that I enjoyed being able to give my partner a certain experience, the play was fun, and I liked the community. Continue reading

Trans Specialty: Stefani Special on Trans BDSM, Progress in Porn, and Vernacular

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TransEthics: What did you do before you got into the Industry?

Stefani Special: Many, many 9 to 5 jobs. Food service mostly but also customer service rep, sales person, construction. I actually started web-camming & escorting before porn too.

TE: What was your motivation for getting started in sex work?

SS: It kind of chose me. I chose to proceed with it because I love sex. I’ve said it before in other interviews but I was working at a sandwich shop & I would have customers ask me at the counter if I had an ad up. I was like what the fuck is that…? Then I did research & was like “oh, okay”. I was already web-camming at the time but mostly just Skype & Yahoo Messenger to get a feel for what it was.

So after pushing it around in my head & originally thinking I could go into cis porn & having that dream crash, I contacted Grooby. They didn’t have shooters in Dallas at the time, but I was contacted shortly after by Omar Wax to shoot. Also I had a brief, like 1-3 scenes in solo gay porn but of course you wouldn’t recognize me even if you knew me. That was way prior to Grooby of course, and actually even prior to escorting. Continue reading

Trans Dreams: Kailee Keller on Jobs, Restrooms, and Success

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TransEthics: What is it that attracted you to the Adult Industry?

Kailee Keller: Well as like anyone and everyone, I love porn (laughs). I actually didn’t really seek it out though, the industry kinda found me. I always had it in the back of my head that I know I could do porn, and I would probably be good at it. I started camming a long time ago to make a little side money in college when things were rough, and I really enjoyed it, so I knew I would enjoy doing professional shoots with websites! Continue reading

Trans Mission: Sofia Clark on Slurs, Realizations, and her book “The She Male Experiment: I’m Transgender”

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TransEthics: Are you ready for the interview?

Sofia Clark: First I want to say that This Book (The She Male Experiment: I’m Transgender) is dedicated to every person going through a transition in their lives. Especially to all those trapped in the wrong body, those fighting to find their true identity in this world. Even though my story is extreme and not representative of what you may be going through, your pain, our pain¸ is the same. Know that I’ve been there. I made it and you will to. Be strong and find your “inner Sofia”. I also need to acknowledge my mother, because without her love and support I would never be the person I am.

TE: How did your mother react when you came out as trans to her? Continue reading

Trans Balance: Wendy Summers on Corporate Life, Acceptance, and Polyamory

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TransEthics: How long have you been in the sex industries?

Wendy Summers: I started camming back in 2010. I kind of started on a lark — I was supposed to meet a friend for lunch and she cancelled at the last-minute. I got bored, so I logged into an account I had on iFriends and was shocked to find guys going gaga over me. I made an insane amount of money that first afternoon, so that night I sat down and put a business plan together. I started shooting pictures and video for my iFriends fan club by myself and realized it would be easier to have someone else behind the camera. I hired a photographer and things just sort of snowballed from there. I launched my self-produced solo website, www.wendysummers.com in February 2012.

It’s all grown out of my fan’s support for the work I do. One thing just lead to another. I must be doing something right, as I’ve been updating weekly for over 3 years and I’ve won the 2013 RISE Award for Best Shemale Performer (their choice of words) and three Transgender Erotica Awards over my career and well as xbiz and AVN nominations. It’s been an awesome journey so far. Continue reading

Trans Masculinity: James Darling on Gaining Male Privilege, the Trans 100, and Making a Difference

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Trans Ethics: We’ve interviewed trans-masculine non-binary people here before, but never a trans man, so you get to pop the cherry here. Do you feel trans men are ignored in the media?

James Darling: Trans men are often not represented in mainstream media as much as trans women. I think that has to do with a lot of factors, one of them being that there just aren’t as many higher profile trans male celebrities as there are trans women celebrities. I also think most people are unfamiliar with what trans men are, and maybe don’t find it as interesting tabloid fodder as they do with trans women, and that probably has more to do with transmisogyny than anything else. For example, trans men are more often celebrated for wanting to be men vs the way trans women are often looked down on for wanting to be women.

TE: Would you be so kind as to tell us some of the issues trans men face?  Continue reading