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Dear Parents of Transgender Children

Updated: Dec 16, 2020

I feel like I have created a lot of content for my friends and family to help them better understand what it is like to be trans... but I also want to speak about being a parent of a transgender child, how difficult it may be for the family - and how best support your child.

In no way, shape or form am I trying to tell you how to raise your children - because I'm only 19... however I know how your child might feel, and this insight may just help you and your child.

It's not going to be easy for anyone

I just wanted to start off by saying that there is most likely going to be a little bit of misunderstanding between you and your child - that's normal.

But the most important thing, is that both sides listen and try to learn.

It's (most likely) not a phase

If your child has decided to tell you that they think they might be trans, it's probably not just a phase.

No one would want to put themselves through such difficult and uncomfortable situation, so when you child say they may be trans - take them seriously.

There is nothing worse than someone's feelings being invalidated.

Imagine if you ordered a curry at a restaurant, and you tell the waiter that the curry is too spicy for you... and they say "no it's not" or "just try eating more, you'll get used to the spice".

Make sure your child feels heard - and don't invalidate their experiences.

You're not losing your child

Too many parents believe that they might losing a child when they find out that their child is trans.

The reality is, you're not losing anyone - your child is still the exact same as you know, the only aspect that is changing is their gender identity. All those memories you had of them when they were young are still there, they are not rewriting the past, but correcting their future.

Gender identity has nothing to do with how much you can love your child, so please don't feel like there is a death in the family. They will always be there, regardless of their gender.

It's not your 'fault'

When such big and shocking news comes out, you may be quick to find someone to blame, however, there is no one to blame here.

You did not make any bad parental choices in the past to make you child trans, it's the way they have always been. Maybe it's just now, when they're 14, 18 or 22 when they decide they have figured it out for themselves - and they're happy to share that with you.

You don't know best

No, you really don't.

I know that as the parent of your child, you may think that you have been there throughout your child's life and you know exactly what they're like.

You might think "yes I know that my child exhibited a few feminine characteristics, but they're not trans".

Even though you may believe that you have know you child for so long, that it's impossible that you don't know everything about them... there are still things that children keep to themselves - especially when it comes to such confusing subjects such as being trans.

Put your child's happiness first

As a parent, what do you really want for your child?

Most parents just want their children to be happy, healthy and kind.

If you show you child that you believe in this, and that you believe in them... then they will be so much more open and comfortable to take you along the journey of their transition.

It's not an easy life of being trans, and so many young people don't have their family's support. It can be a very scary experience at times, so the most important this is that you are there for them.

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