19 tips for raising a trans kid

April 26 |
@offbeatfamilies runs these advice questions as an opportunity for our readers to share personal experiences and anecdotes. Readers are responsible for doing their own research before following any advice given here... or anywhere else on the web, for that matter.
By: Meggy - CC BY 2.0
By: MeggyCC BY 2.0

Several of y'all have recently sent us this piece from Autostraddle: 19 Terribly Interesting Tips on Raising a Trans Kid (from a Trans Kid) written by M., the blogger behind translabyrinth.

I thought this list was remarkable for several reasons — the biggest of which is the sheer educational value in it. If you've never been or had a trans kid (and that's most of us), it offers remarkable insights…

Don't run and tell everyone that your kid is trans just to get it over with. Tell people as they need to know, unless there's a family member or friend your kid feels they should tell, and is one that you feel will react in a positive manner. If you're Super Parent (and if you are, sorry about everyone on Krypton dying and everything, that sure sucks), you may want to go telling your family and friends The New World Order, but the more people who know the more pressure can be put on a child to make up their mind one way or another. Also, odds are your kid won't want pronouns out of the gate, so call them your daughter if that's who they are right now, and if they change that to son later, say that later. You're not here to make other people feel comfortable, you're here to make just one person the most comfortable person ever. So do that.

When it comes to schools, talk to their teacher first when they start living a significant period of the day in their new gender's clothing (if they're in elementary school). If there's bullying, talk to an administrator, but don't do so with the assumption you're going to have to fight them all the way to the Lifetime movie adaptation of your struggle. Most people, yourself included until your kid became trans, don't know as much about gender variance, so be ready to take the lead, educate, and make it clear that the school's job is to prevent any kind of bullying. Also, never let changing schools be off the table. If they're in middle school or high school, don't divulge to their, what, eight teachers, until they're going to school in dress. Talk to teachers of whatever classroom they're being bullied in, first, if they're not full time new gender at school.

You can read the entire list at Autostraddle.