She's Not the Man I Married: My Life with a Transgender Husband
She’s Not the Man I Married is a smart, in-depth look at being a woman whose husband is transgendered. Boyd is candid and brave as she talks about the strain of loyalty and desire, the confusion, questions of sexuality and identity and, most of all, the emotional reality of being married to someone who needs to make the biggest change that a person can possibly make.
A sequel to the more detached in tone novel, My Husband Betty, Boyd wrote She’s Not the Man I Married specifically to talk more openly about her feelings. Boyd is articulate and has clearly thought about this topic a great deal, in addition to her research. Her writing is fluid and moving. It has its academic moments, but is always accessible. I can imagine other writers who deal with this subject turning it into something sensational and lurid, but Boyd never writes to the lowest common denominator.
She’s Not the Man I Married is a book about gender, but it’s also a memoir. Boyd succeeds in her project; the perspective is intimate, and the facts are interesting for those who can personally relate as transgendered people or those married to transgendered people, as well as outsiders. It’s special to get to peek into the private space of any marriage, particularly a marriage that faces such unique challenges. She’s Not the Man I Married sustains this glimpse for 300 pages, and it is a fascinating read.