Jennifer Finney Boylan

Jennifer Finney Boylan

American author

Jennifer Finney Boylan (born James Boylan on June 22, 1958) is an American author, transgender activist and reality television personality who is a professor at Barnard College of Columbia University and a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times. She is also widely known for her appearances on I Am Cait, a 2015-2016 spin-off of Keeping Up with the Kardashians starring her friend Caitlyn Jenner.

Personal life Boylan is a trans woman. Her 2003 autobiography, She's Not There: A Life in Two Genders, was the first book published by an openly transgender American to become a bestseller. She has two children, Zai and Sean, with Deirdre Boylan, whom she married in 1988 before her transition. Boylan began her male to female transition in 2000, beginning with therapy, feminine clothing, and female hormone supplements. While undergoing sexual reassignment surgery, Boylan was convinced that her marriage to Deirdre would end. Today, the couple is still married and lives in New York City and Belgrade Lakes, Maine. Nine years after she began her transition, Boylan published an article for The New York Times stating, "my spouse and I love each other, and that our legal union has been a good thing – for us, for our children and our community"

Jenny Boylan Author - My earliest memory, my first sense of self, is about being transgender. When I was two or three I was sitting beneath the ironing board as my mother ironed my father’s shirts.

There was a sizzle of steam as she shook her blue plastic water bottle onto the cotton and pressed it against the hot iron. I was on the floor sitting in a shaft of sunlight. She said, Someday you’ll wear shirts like this.

I just looked at her, not understanding. I thought, Why would I ever be wearing shirts like my fathers?

Since then, the thought that I was somehow wired for the wrong body was never out of my conscious mind, although my sense of what it meant to be male or female certainly grew more complex as the years went by.

I especially remember adolescence, when it was as if all the girls I knew had boarded a ship and sailed out to sea, and I was left on a dock alone, knowing that I had somehow been left behind.

When I finally came out, in my late 30s, the person I was most worried about telling was my mother. She was almost 85 by then, and she was a conservative, deeply religious woman. I came out to her on a Sunday night. I said, Mom, there’s something I’ve wanted to tell you since I was a child, but I’ve never had the courage to talk about because I was afraid if I told you, you wouldn’t love me any more.

Then I began to cry, and the tears rolled down. And my little mother got up out of her chair and put her arms around me and said, “I would never turn my back on my child.” And then she quoted first Corinthians, And now these three remain—faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.

I said to her, but mom, won’t it be a scandal when everyone finds out I’m your daughter?

She said, Well, quite frankly, yes. But I will adjust.

She put her arms around me and she said, Love will prevail.

In my life, since then, that has turned out to be mostly true. Love has prevailed, and to my surprise, many of the people I most expected to lose when I came out as trans have responded with faith and hope, and love—including my sons, Zach and Sean, and above all, my wife, Deirdre. We will have been married for twenty-seven years this summer—twelve as husband and wife; and fifteen as wife and wife.

Some people don’t understand that kind of love, but fortunately, I’m not married to any of those people.

I’m aware that I’ve been aided on my journey not only by the kindness of others, but by some of the societal privileges of race and class and economic status. The rate of violence and murder and unemployment for trans people, especially trans women of color, is intolerable, and it has to change.

I think it’s going to be a long road. But it is my hope, if people come forward and tell their stories, and live their lives with authenticity and dignity, that, just as my mother foretold, love will prevail.

I think of the Paul Simon song sometimes, the one that goes, “I believe in the future we will suffer no more. Maybe not in my lifetime, but in yours, I feel sure.”

View details Hide details
Jennifer Finney Boylan was born on Sunday, 22 June 1958 in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania USA. His full name at birth was James Boylan. He is best known as an author. Boylan's country of citizenship (nationality) is American. He has blue eyes and dark brown hair (color). Jennifer Finney Boylan is 65 years old and his zodiac star sign is Cancer.

You can find people similar to Jennifer Finney Boylan by visiting our lists Transgender academics and Transgender studies academics.

Full name at birth
James Boylan
Claim to fame add_black claim to fame
Date of birth
22 June 1958
Place of birth
Valley Forge, Pennsylvania USA
Author, activist, professor
Occupation category


Height add_black height
Hair color
Eye color
Religion add_black religion
Zodiac sign
Distinctive feature add_black distinctive feature
Pets add_black pets


Belgrade Lakes, Maine
add_black pencil
High school add_black high school
University add_black university
Talent agency add_black talent agency
Political affiliation add_black political affiliation
Political party add_black political party
Partner: Deirdre Boylan (Married) 2 children
Jennifer Finney Boylan and Deirdre Boylan

This page is the FamousFix profile for Jennifer Finney Boylan. Content on this page is contributed by editors who belong to our editorial community. We welcome your contributions... so please create an account if you would like to collaborate with other editor's in helping to shape this website.

On the Jennifer Finney Boylan page you will be able to add and update factual information, post media and connect this topic to other topics on the website. This website does skew towards famous actors, musicians, models and sports stars, however we would like to expand that to include many other interesting topics.

Terms of Use · Copyright · Privacy
Copyright 2006-2024, FamousFix · 0.86s