I never made a huge effort to change my voice. I have experimented with lowering my tone at home, speaking into a microphone; but when I actually talk with someone, I’d rather let the conversation flow naturally. I prefer to concentrate on what I say instead of how squeaky I sound, even if that entails being seen as female.
Maybe, if my voice were the only thing in the way of “passing”, I’d pay more attention to it. As it is, I’m usually seen as male anyway, unless the other person already knows me well. Or maybe I just don’t care so much; maybe I care more about establishing a connection with the person I’m talking to, a connection that goes beyond how I’m gendered.
As Clare Howell wrote in GenderQueer, “…I make little effort to present either a feminine or masculine appearance. I lived half a lifetime creating the caricature of a man and have no interest in spending the other half doing ‘woman’.”*
That doesn’t mean I like my voice; I remember being horrified when I first heard a recording of myself in the 6th grade. It’ll be awesome to hear it change when I’m on testosterone. Maybe I’m just lazy; but for now, other things seem more important than getting a lower voice.
* “Caricature” doesn’t seem the best term for modifying one’s presentation; I guess she means “trying too hard to pass by pretending to be someone you’re not.” I don’t think a transwoman would want to ridicule transpeople!
PS: Vancouver Coastal Health’s guide to changing speech for transpeople.