Tommy Dorfman thinks she would have transitioned 'a lot sooner' if not for 13 Reasons Why role

·2 min read
Tommy Dorfman thinks she would have transitioned 'a lot sooner' if not for 13 Reasons Why role

Actress Tommy Dorfman publicly came out as trans just over a year ago, but she says if it wasn't for her casting on 13 Reasons Why, she might well have done so earlier.

Dorfman, who shot to fame playing Ryan Shaver on the hit Netflix series, told Rachel Bilson on the latest episode of the Broad Ideas podcast that though she's grateful for her role the show, "I think if I hadn't booked that job, I would've started transitioning a lot sooner."

The actress, 30, landed the role of Ryan, a gay, cisgender male character, at age 24, telling Bilson and cohost Olivia Allen that she dealt with gender dysphoria at that time, but she felt she needed to put that aside for the work.

"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," she explained. "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 Dorfman
Tommy Dorfman

Gotham/GC Images Tommy Dorfman

"For me, I feel like I kind of got stuck in time for a minute, like I actually had to put lot of stuff that I maybe thought I was going to work on, or I thought I would do, or like personal developmental things, I had to kind of compartmentalize those things and put them away," she said. "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.'"

The actress first publicly opened up about her transition in a Time interview in July 2021, saying at the time, "It's funny to think about coming out, because I haven't gone anywhere. I view today as a reintroduction to me as a woman, having made a transition medically. Coming out is always viewed as this grand reveal, but I was never not out. Today is about clarity: I am a trans woman. My pronouns are she/her. My name is Tommy."

Dorfman also got candid on the podcast about her sober lifestyle, her experience transitioning during a pandemic, her advice on how to talk to kids about gender identity, and more. You can listen to the episode below.

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