Let’s face it, transexual women have had it rough, and while things are improving, they’re not improving fast enough. Although some are comfortable with the word tranny, many are not and consider that to be their version of the “N word.” Shemale is another word to avoid, transexual women are female, in mindset if not in biologic fact and frankly, she-male is a term often associated with prostitutes. Most transgender women consider themselves to be women first and foremost, make sure you show her the respect of referring to her with the correct female pronouns.
Unless you’ve established that you are heading towards a sexual encounter with her, do not ask questions about her penis or lack thereof. If you believe you are heading towards a sexual encounter, asking “are you still transitioning?” is a much more appropriate way to open communication on the subject than asking direct questions regarding penises. “Have you had the operation” or “are you pre-op or post-op” are also inappropriate, many transgendered women undergo many surgeries to assume a form that matches their gender identity, many do without, and have no plans to go under the knife. Everyone’s journey is unique, don’t make assumptions.
Sometimes well-intentioned comments like ‘Wow, you look like a REAL woman,” “You could pass,” “Wow I would never know you were transexual” while maybe meant as a compliment, are not. Most transexual women consider themselves to be a woman, a real woman. Whether you perceive them to be transexual or not, whether you consider one in particular to be beautiful or ugly is besides the point. If you want to compliment a transexual woman on her appearance, compliment her as you would any other woman: “you look beautiful tonight,” or “wow that dress really brings out the color of your eyes,” NOT “wow your tits look real!”
Many are curious about transexuals, but it is never appropriate to ask “Can you have an orgasm?” You wouldn’t ask a woman that, and frankly like any other woman it probably comes down to the skill of her partner. You certainly wouldn’t ask that question of a biologically cisgendered female, even if you thought sex might be on the horizon, even though there are plenty of them who are generally not orgasmic. Treat her like you would like a man to treat your sister or mother, with consideration, remembering ALWAYS to treat her like the person she is – one who deserves respect.