Laverne Cox is arguably the most famous transgender celebrity on the planet and she’s also regarded as one of the most beautiful and glamorous trans women in the world as well. With all of those accolades, you’d think it would be easier for her than some of her other trans sisters to find love. However, Cox explains in a new interview that, like many other trans people, she still struggles with stigma and discrimination when it comes to the dating scene.
In a new cover feature for Bust magazine, Cox opens up about a long-term relationship she had with a man that ended because of his shame over being with a trans woman.
“There’s a man that I was involved with on and off for eight years,” cox explained. “I never met any of his friends or family. We barely even went out in public together, so that tells you the nature of the relationship. What’s deep to me about that is that I think I had this fantasy that once I was famous and accepted by society, this guy would be like, ‘Oh, I’m dating Laverne. I can show her off now.’ And it’s actually the opposite of that. He’s engaged to someone else now.”
Although the experience was obviously heartbreaking for Cox, she explains that, over time, she learned to understand that the problem wasn’t her; it was her ex’s insecurities.
“What I realized is it’s not about me,” she says. “It’s actually about that man’s shame around being attracted to me. And his own issues of being seen as less of a man. He has deep, deep, deep insecurities. There are many men who date transgender women and who engage with us only sexually and don’t want anyone to know about it. They’re straight identified, and there’s a huge stigma around men who are attracted to and have sex with and date trans women. They’re arguably even more stigmatized than we are.”
Cox has also learned to be wiser when it comes to choosing men.
“I used to believe that if I was smart enough, if I was good enough, if I were pretty enough, that this man all of a sudden would love me and want to fully integrate me into his life,” she adds. “What I have come to learn is that it does not matter how successful I am, how accomplished I am, how smart I am, how good in bed I am. None of that matters if a man is just not available. I cannot choose those people. I have to choose differently.”
We’re glad that Cox learned those valuable lessons, though, we wish society’s views on gender and sexuality would change so that not only would trans people to be seen as normal, sexual human beings who deserve love, but also that heterosexual people would be allowed to find love with trans people and not have their sexuality questioned.