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Melanie Tapson Voice Care

1113 Queen St E, Toronto

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Gender Affirming Voice and Communication Training

If you are interested in finding or developing your most authentic voice, and keeping your voice healthy and sustainable while you do, I am happy to work with you.  Our work together can help you find a voice and communication style that feel both comfortable and authentic, and that you feel reflect your gender identity and are congruent with your gender expression.  As a registered speech-language pathologist, you may find that our sessions are covered by your supplemental insurance, as well.

Here is some information about my approach to gender affirming voice and communication training:

Most people want to know if I can help them find a higher or lower pitch. Therapy with me certainly can involve raising or lowering the pitch of your voice (depending on your goals), but it also often involves working on making your voice lighter (often perceived as a more feminine sound) or deeper (often perceived as a more masculine sound), and in all cases, more resonant and less effortful. Working on your voice doesn’t mean you have to conform to culturally-defined societal expectations of gender; these are just some of the aspects of finding a more authentic voice that many clients have expressed they want to work toward. Voice therapy with me also includes working on the other aspects of communication that help get your message across, such as the way you use your body when you communicate, the kinds of words and phrases you choose, and the way you express yourself. As well, we will explore how you would like to express your gender identity through voice and communication, examining together what makes the most authentic voice for you.

I typically start with an in-depth 1-hour assessment session, where I get the chance to learn more about you and your goals, which helps me design the most effective approach to voice work for each individual person. Therapy sessions are typically between 30 minutes and an hour long, and often go in blocks of a few weeks’ worth of weekly or bi-weekly sessions, followed by a break for you to work on what we have explored and learned together. This is often followed up with another block of sessions to build on what you are learning and practicing. However, the length of individual sessions and how long we work together is always determined by a combination of your goals, how your voice changes from session to session, and how much support you feel you need, and this is a conversation we will always have together. Sessions may involve speaking, listening, writing, thinking, expressing, and reflecting on your work with your new voice, and they always involve practicing what you are learning and evaluating how you are feeling about your voice.

I am proud of my connection to the LGBTQ2S+ community, and I maintain relationships with a variety of people, care providers, and resources that partner wonderfully with the work you’re doing on your voice. I’m also proud of my efforts to stay on top of the current best practices in voice therapy and in particular, in gender spectrum voice and communication work. I’ve taken a ton of supplemental training in this area, and I often present workshops and mentor SLPs who are new to this area of practice because I firmly believe we need more competent, confident, caring clinicians in this area, and I’m more than happy to help us all get there together.

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