OINTB's Laverne Cox on transgender dating: 'It's really tricky and challenging'
Published 24/06/2015 | 08:18
Laverne Cox believes transgender dating is often “stigmatised”.
The Orange Is the New Black star was born a man and she decided to embrace her womanhood quite some time ago.
But identifying as a female doesn’t mean Laverne and other members of the transgender community are spared their fair share of romantic issues.
“It came up for me because a lot of my girlfriends are trans and date men. And navigating dating as a trans woman, particularly a trans woman who dates men, is really, really tricky and challenging,” the star told Collider of why she thinks a famous man who dates a transgender woman needs to go public with the romance.
“And I’ve often said that loving a transgender person is a revolutionary act. And that so often, the men who date us are deeply stigmatised, and that is something that is misunderstood and mis-recognised. At the end of the day, what does it mean to love, to really love someone and to be there for them? And for me, I have a quote that Cornel West says, is that, ‘justice is what love looks like in public.’ How do we have love for each other?”
Laverne is proud of Jenji Kohan, the creator of Orange is the New Black, and Shonda Rhimes for their contribution to the LGBTQ community through their television shows.
She believes both women have managed to provide invaluable insight to people who may not have any clue what life as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning person might be like.
“At the end of the day, when we get to know people as people–and this is why it can happen on television–people can become more than their gender identity, their race, their sexual orientation,” Laverne said. “The wonderful thing about Orange Is the New Black is that despite what these women are incarcerated for, despite their race, age, sexual orientation, gender, these women are human beings. And the job of the artist, really, is to reflect this humanity. And I think that is what Jenji, our showrunner does and Shonda Rhimes does so beautifully.”