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Tips for Parents of Trans Kids

April 2017


Being a Trans Kid is Hard

Transgender Expert Offers Tips to Parents

Here's What Parents of Transgender Kids Need to Know

Advice for Parents Whose Child Just Came Out to Them as Transgender

Sex Change Treatment for Kids

How Do I Know if I am Trans?


Trans Updates

February 2017


State by State Look at Trans Equality

Transgender Cover Girl

National Geographic Features Transgender Cover Story

My Transgender Life: On Hallowed Ground

Transgender Latina Activists

Statistics on Transgender Mental Health

Critical Facts About State of Transgender America


Trans Woman Makes Political History in Virginia


November 2017


Trans woman Danica Roem (D) just defeated anti-LGBTQ candidate Bob Marshall (R) in Virginia.  The man who wrote the anti-trans bathroom bill just lost the election to a trans woman. Let that sink in.


Virginia’s most socially conservative state lawmaker was ousted from office on Nov 7, 2017 by Danica Roem, a Democrat, who will be one of the nation’s first openly transgender elected officials and who embodies much of what Bob Marshall fought against in Richmond.


Danica Roem defeated incumbent Republican Bob Marshall, 73, on having campaigned on a platform of social inclusion as well as local issues, such as building up infrastructure and job creation. it also exposed the nation’s fault lines over gender identity.


The race pitted a 33-year-old former journalist who began her physical gender transition four years ago against a 13-term incumbent who called himself Virginia’s “chief homophobe” and earlier this year introduced a “bathroom bill” that died in committee.

“Discrimination is a disqualifier,” a jubilant Roem said. “This is about the people of the 13th District, disregarding fear tactics, disregarding phobias, where we celebrate you because of who you are, not despite it.”




Wasington Post: First Trans Person Elected to Public Office in Virginia
LA Times: Danica Roem Defeats Chief Homophobe

NBC News: Trans Woman Elected to Virginia State Legislature

LGBTQ Nation: Virginia's New Transgender Legislator


National Geographic: Transgender Cover Girl

December 2016

Described as a first for the magazine, National Geographic will feature a transgender person on the cover of its January 2017 edition.  A stunning photo of 9-year-old Avery Jackson will appear on the subscriber’s edition of the magazine. “The best thing about being a girl is, now I don’t have to pretend to be a boy,” Jackson says in a caption accompanying the cover image.


The “Gender Revolution” issue, which hits newsstands nationwide on December 27, examines the “cultural, social, biological and personal” aspects of gender identity, according to a press release. Features include “Dangerous Lives of Girls,” which follows the lives of young women in Sierra Leone, and “Rethinking Gender,” which examines how science can help “navigate the shifting landscape of gender identity.”

National Geographic’s Editor-in-Chief Susan Goldberg told NBC Out that the magazine’s staff was inspired by gender’s omnipresence in the national conversation in creating the issue. “We wanted to look at how traditional gender roles play out all over the world, but also look into gender as a spectrum,” Goldberg said. “There’s lots of coverage on celebrities, but there wasn’t an understanding on real people and the issues we face every day in classrooms or workplaces in regards to gender.”

The issue comes just ahead of the release of a two-hour documentary, “Gender Revolution: A Journey with Katie Couric,” which will cover “everything you wanted to know about gender but were afraid to ask,” according to Couric. That documentary will debut on the National Geographic channel on February 6.


National Geographic: Transgender Cover Girl


Back-to-School: Trans Girl Everyone Now Knows as Stella

August 2016


It might seem unusual to some parents that Lisa Keating of Tacoma, Wash. was not at all surprised when her child announced one day in 2014, “I think I’m transgender.”  But that’s because Keating and her husband knew their daughter was very self-reflective, expressive and comfortable being different.  “From about age 3, she was fluid with her gender expression,” Keating told the News Tribune.


Her mother remembers that as a preschooler, her child was equally happy playing with Tinker Bell as she was with Thomas the Tank Engine. And at age 9, that child decided to make a change.  “I went to my mom and said, ‘When I wear boy’s clothes, or what are considered to be boy’s clothes, I want you to call me by my old name,” Stella told KOMO-TV. “Then I added, ‘When I wear clothes like I’m wearing now, I want you to call me Stella.’ ”  “My body knew I was a girl,” said Stella. “In my body, I felt messed up.”

Keating told KOMO-TV she did her homework, reading up on transgender children and reaching out to experts and other parents, and ultimately, her daughter’s school.  “I went to the principal, I went to the teacher and the counselor and said ‘This is where she’s at right now,’ “said Lisa.

Now 11, she’s back to school as a sixth grader, her third year in a row of presenting authentically, and happy. Her classmates, she said, weren’t sure what to make of this change, at first.  “They were confused,” said Stella, who in fourth grade revealed to her classmates she didn’t want to be called her old name anymore. “I had to explain to them and they eventually understood that I’m transgender.”  But Stella said some children persisted in calling her by her old name, what trans people refer to as “deadnaming.” A counselor helped her find the words to help them understand why that was so hurtful. In time, everyone came around. “They just said, ‘That’s what she wants. We should respect that.’ It’s no big deal now.”


(From LGBTQ Nation)




LGBTQ Nation: Back to School for Trans Girl Everyone Now Knows as Stella


Transgender Stories

September 2016


Laura Jane Grace: Trans Punk Rocker

Transploitation in Hollywood

I Am A Trans Mother

Trans Bathroom Access in Federal Buildings

Protecting Transgender Students


Transgender Speaker at Democratic Convention

July 2016


Twenty-five-year-old Sarah McBride made history when she took center stage at the Democratic National Convention, at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, as the first openly transgender person to address a major party convention.


McBride, who currently works as the national press secretary for the Human Rights Campaign, is no stranger to breaking down barriers. Four years ago, as student body president at American University, the then-21-year-old made national headlines when she came out as transgender in the school's student-run paper, The Eagle. Later in 2012, she interned at the White House Office of Public Engagement -- the first out trans woman to work at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

More recently, McBride stepped into the national spotlight for a viral selfie she took while inside a women's restroom in North Carolina, where a controversial law enacted last March bans transgender people from using government building bathrooms in line with their gender identities.



LGBTQ Nation: Openly Trans Speaker at DNC

NBC News: Transgender Activist Makes History at DNC


Trans Updates

June 2016


Ten Myths About Transgender Love

Transgender Beauty Pageant in Israel

Letter to Conservative Mother From Transgender Woman

Trans Bathrooms: Nationwide Debate

Trans People Are Not a Threat to You

If You Think Trans Bathroom Access Doesn't Matter...

What it Means to Be Transgender/Gender Non-Conforming

Transgender Q&A


Trans Notes

May 2016


Transitioning in the Workplace

Trans Model Wears Dress of Flags

Trans Bathrooms: Nationwide Debate

US Publicly Embraces Trans Community

Trans Bathroom Battle in NC Just Getting Started

Trans People Are Not a Threat to You

If You Think Trans Bathroom Access Doesn't Matter...

What it Means to Be Transgender/Gender Non-Conforming

Pastor Shows Support for Trans Rights

Dan Savage vs. Ann Coulter on Trans Bathroom Rights

Six Things Trans People Do in the Bathroom

Mother's Influence on Her Transgender Daughter

Scared of Trans People in Bathrooms?

Philippines Elect First Transgender Politician to Congress

Vetch: Magazine of Trans Poetry and Poetics


Sweet Transvestite From Transsexual Transylvania

June 2016


Two-Hour Event Set to Air Fall 2016 on FOX TV

Emmy Award-nominated actress Laverne Cox (“Orange is the New Black”) has been cast as Dr. Frank-N-Furter in THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW, which is set to air Fall 2016 on FOX. The two-hour event is a reimagining of the cult classic, which is celebrating 40 years of theatrical distribution – longer than any other film in history. One of the most popular films of all time, it still plays in movie theaters around the world.

THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW follows sweethearts Janet Weiss and Brad Majors, who stumble upon Dr. Frank-N-Furter’s bizarre abode. Frank-N-Furter, a sexually ambiguous flirtatious alien mad-scientist, is holding an annual, Transylvanian science convention to showcase the birth of “Rocky Horror” – a fit, attractive man created solely to fulfill Frank's desires.


Laverne Cox is an Emmy Award-nominated actress who is best known for portraying the groundbreaking role of transgender inmate “Sophia Burset” on the hit series “Orange is The New Black.” She is the first trans woman of color to have a leading role on a mainstream scripted television show. Cox recently added another drama to her resume as the lead of the CBS pilot “Doubt.” Additional TV credits include “The Mindy Project,” “Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce” and “Faking It.” She also appeared opposite Lily Tomlin in the feature comedy “Grandma,” from acclaimed writer and director Paul Weitz. Her groundbreaking documentary, “Laverne Cox Presents: The T Word,” won a Daytime Emmy Award and was nominated for a GLAAD Media Award. Her next trans-themed documentary, “Free CeCe,” is scheduled for release in 2016.

Lou Adler (Grammy Award winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee) executive-produced “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” for Twentieth Century Fox, which premiered on September 26, 1975, and is the longest-running movie in motion picture history. Adler met Gail Berman (TV, film and Broadway producer) in 2004. Berman shared his passion and vision for the reimagined version of the 40-year-old cult-classic and, in 2014, they partnered to begin development.

THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW is from Fox 21 Television Studios and The Jackal Group. Adler and Berman will serve as executive producers. Emmy Award winner Kenny Ortega (“High School Musical” franchise, “This Is It,” “Descendants,” “Hocus Pocus,” “Newsies”) will direct, choreograph and executive-produce.




Trailer for New Rocky Horror Picture Show

FOX TV: Laverne Fox Joins Rocky Horror Picture Show

Laverne Cox Responds to Rocky Horror Criticism

Huffington Post: Laverne Cox Responds to Critics

Movie Trailer: Rocky Horror Picture Show Trailer

Huffington Post: Laverne Cox's Inner and Outer Beauty


Target Stores New Trans Bathroom Policy

May 2016


Reactions around Alabama and the South to Target's announcement that transgender employees and shoppers can use the restroom or dressing room that matches their gender identity has sparked talk of a boycott.

Mobile County Commissioner Jerry Carl, who earlier referred to the possibility of "street freaks" ogling women or assaulting children in relation to laws allowing transgender people to use the restroom that matches their gender identity, said he would no longer shop at Target.  "Well, welcome to Corporate America! Target is helping these predator's dream come true. If you don't like it, there is only one thing Corporate America understands "the ring of the cash register"! Never again will I step into another Target! We need to be following our moral compass not some politically correct corporation," Carl wrote on his Facebook page.

Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert echoed those sentiments.  "If they're going to be having women come to men's restrooms, I won't be going to Target to shop, unless and until that changes," Gohmert said, according to The Hill. "Here we are, at the place in our history where insanity in the name of political correctness rules the day, common sense no longer common."  Gohmert said he thought the law would make it easier for sex offenders to harass children.  "There will be people that do that," Gohmert said. "Why not let the transgender, LGBT,Q,R,S,T — whatever the initials are — let them have their activities where they don't impose upon the privacy of someone who wants to go to the restroom or shower without someone from the opposite sex being there with them."

Target Corp. announced this week it would allow transgender employees and shoppers to use the bathroom or dressing room of their choice. The announcement was the first of its type by a major U.S. retailer and comes on the heels of laws in Mississippi and North Carolina that required people to use the bathroom that's stated on their birth certificates.  The measures have been sharply criticized by civil rights groups who said they lead to discrimination against LGBT people.


(From Al.Com)




AL.Com: Reaction to Target's New Transgender Policy Policy


Trans News

January 2016


2015 Trans Year in Review

Unbearable Lightness of Being Transgender

Why Model Carmen Carrera Doesn’t Always Want to be Considered Transgender

Advice for Parents Whose Child Just Came Out to Them as Transgender

I Need Relief From the Pain of Living in a Female Body

Trans People of Color

Day in the Life of an Ordinary Trans Woman

Lilly & Dunkin: New Book About Transgender Experience

First Trans Person to Wed on Reality TV

Transgender Day of Remembrance 2015

Peeing While Trans

My Transgender Life: The Circus

Trans Movement Needs New Science-Based Strategy

Next Phase of the Trans Movement

Transgender Children Today: Society's Responsibility


First Trans Person to Wed on Reality TV

December 2015


Transgender model Carmen Carrera will make history on December 9 when she becomes, according to a press release from VH1, the first transgender person to wed on reality TV.  The broadcast of the wedding will take place during the season finale of "Couple's Therapy With Dr. Jenn." During the broadcast, all five couples involved in this season of "Couple's Therapy" will be a part of the festivities, opening up about what they've learned during the process and where these conversations will take their relationship.

"I was so eager for the ceremony," Carrera told People. "Honestly, knowing that I was going home a married woman gave me a sense of peace... This wedding has given us a sense of freedom to be proud of what we have and who we are. Celebrating our love and what we call our 'modern, modern family,' lets us know that we belong here and that we also have a place to raise a family of our own on our terms. We feel truly blessed."


The transgender model has been with her new husband Adrian Torres for the past ten years. Carrera first rose to fame on season four of "RuPaul's Drag Race," eventually transitioning to live as her authentic self after the season aired. She is also the inspiration for a viral petition calling on Victoria's Secret to make her the first openly trans model to walk in the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show.




First Trans Person to Wed on Reality TV


Bruce Jenner is Now Caitlyn Jenner

June 2015


Transgender Athlete Completes Transition


The transgender Olympic champion, formerly known as Bruce Jenner, reveals her true self in a photo shoot by Annie Leibovitz and interview with Buzz Bissinger in Vanity Fair Magazine. In the interview, Jenner speaks movingly about her journey, saying, "If I was lying on my deathbed and I had kept this secret and never ever did anything about it, I would be lying there saying, You just blew your entire life."  In April, Jenner sat down for an interview with Diane Sawyer to reveal that the former Olympian had the "soul of a female."

Jenner, 65, who won an Olympic gold medal in the decathlon, has had a long public life. As Bruce Jenner, she had been on the cover of Playgirl, an author, an actor and most recently a part of the Kardashian family’s reality television empire. Earlier this year, reports emerged that Bruce Jenner was in the process of becoming a woman.



YouTube: Caitlyn Jenner Photo Shoot

CNN: No More Bruce

NY Times: Caitlyn Jenner Introduces Herself in Vanity Fair

Vanity Fair: Introducing Caitlyn Jenner


Trans Notes

June 2014


Slideshow: Transgender Resources

Israeli Transgender Singer

Laverne Cox in Time Magazine

Matt Nathanson: The Girl in the Kinks Shirt
Five Things Not to Say to a Trans Person

Born With the Wrong Body

Grieving a Child Who is Still Alive

Gender Identity: A New Challenge for Schools

Many Hurdles Ahead for Transgender Rights Movement

Prom Nightmare for Trans Teen

Ten Things I Wish I'd Known When I Started My Transition

Huff Post: Broader Acceptance of Gender Non-Conformity

Trans Lives: Three Years Later


Laverne Cox

June 2014


Transgender activist, Laverne Cox, star of the hit Netflix series "Orange is the New Black," is featured on the cover of Time Magazine.  She was interviewed by Time about her life, current issues, and the transgender movement.



Bullied and harassed for appearing feminine while growing up in Mobile, Alabama, Cox eventually came out as transgender while living in New York City and took up acting. Now a star on the Netflix drama "Orange Is the New Black", she has emerged as a public leader of the trans movement, using her increasingly prominent perch to make the case for equal rights and touring the country giving speeches.


More on Laverne Cox from Huffington Post: Laverne Cox is an actress, producer and transgender advocate who made television history when she became the first African-American transgender woman to appear on an American reality show, with her appearance as a finalist on VH1's I Want to Work for Diddy. The show won the GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Reality Program. Laverne’s popularity subsequently led her to star in, co-create and co-produce her own show called TRANSform Me, making her the first African-American trans woman to produce and star in her own television show. TRANSform Me was nominated for a GLAAD media award for Outstanding Reality Program. As an actress Laverne has had guest starring roles on Law and Order, Law and Order: SVU and HBO’s Bored to Death. She can be seen in the forthcoming independent films Musical Chairs (directed by Susan Seidelman), Carl(a), Grand Street and The Exhibitionists. Her other film credits include Uncle Stephanie, Bronx Paradise, The Kings of Brooklyn and Daughter of Arabia. Laverne continues to be an advocate for transgender representation in the media. Laverne is passionate about telling stories in the media that reflect the full depth, diversity and humanity of transgender experience.




Laverne Cox in Time Magazine

Laverne Cox: Website

Laverne Cox: Wikipedia

Laverne Cox: IMDb


Transgender Terminology

Transgender -
"Transgender" is often used as an umbrella term and refers to those who transgress societal gender norms. Generally, people who identifies as transgender exhibit some behavior or traits that falls outside of traditional gender expectations.

Transsexual -
A term referring to a person whose gender identity differs from what is culturally associated with their biological sex at birth.  Some, but not all, transsexuals wish to change their bodies to be congruent with their gender identity through sex reassignment surgery. This term is considered outdated. Most transsexual people refer to themselves as transgender.

Androgyny -
The mixing of masculine and feminine characteristics. 2. Something that is neither masculine nor feminine.

Drag -
The act of dressing in gendered clothing as part of a performance. Drag may be performed as a political comment on gender, as parody, or simply as entertainment. Drag performance does not indicate sexuality, gender identity, or sex identity.

Intersex -
Intersexuality is a naturally occurring condition that affects the reproductive and sexual system. Intersex people are born with sex chromosomes, external genitalia, or internal reproductive systems that are not considered "standard" for either male or female. The existence of intersexuals shows that there are not just two sexes and that our ways of thinking about sex (trying to force everyone to fit into either male box or  female) is socially constructed.

Gender Bender/Gender Queer -
A person who redefines or plays with gender, or who refuses gender altogether. People who bend/break the rules of gender and blur the boundaries.

Cross-dresser -
A person who enjoys dressing in clothes typically associated with the other gender.  Preferred over the term “transvestite.”  Cross-dressers may be of any sexual orientation.

Two-Spirited -
A term for third-gender people that are among many Native American and Canadian First Nations tribes. It usually implies a masculine spirit and a feminine spirit living in the same body. It is also used by gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and intersex Native Americans to describe themselves. Two-Spirited people have distinct gender and social roles in their tribes. Some are counselors while others are medicine persons or spiritual functionaries. They study skills including story telling, theater, magic, hypnotism, healing, herbal medicine, ventriloquism, singing, music and dance.


Trans Notes

October 2013


Matt Nathanson: The Girl in the Kinks Shirt

Coy Mathis: One Child's Fight to Change Gender

Stephen Ira: We Happy Trans

Transgender Youth Presenting Challenges for Schools

PFLAG: Our Trans Children
Gay Agenda: Transgender Resources

You Tube: Transgender Children - Out of the Shadows
Huff Post/Gay Voices: Transgender News

You Tube: Comments from 7 Year Old Jazz


Coy Mathis


October 2013


"They're telling me I'm a boy when I'm really a girl."


Rolling Stone Magazine recently ran an amazing article about a young boy who wanted to become a girl.  Sabrina Rubin Erdely's article is about the journey of Coy Mathis and her parents' process of coming to terms with the transgender issue.


Coy's parents regarded his fascination with all things sparkly, ruffly and pink as the harmless play of a toddler whose mind was yet untouched by social constructs of "masculine" and "feminine." Coy was one of four siblings – a triplet with a same-age sister and brother, plus an older sister – and so was surrounded by both "girl" and "boy" toys, inside their cramped split-level house, where the living room was covered by a patina of puzzle pieces and stray Legos. Kathryn and Jeremy figured it was just a matter of time before Coy sorted it out for himself.



"When am I going to get my girl parts?" he asked softly one day.  "What do you mean?" asked his mother.  "When are we going to go to the doctor to have me fixed?" Coy asked, tears now spilling down his cheeks. "To get my girl parts?" That's when it dawned on Kathryn Mathis, with a sinking feeling, that she and her husband were dealing with a very serious issue.  The lengthy article, published by Rolling Stone, is incredibly touching and filled with profound details and lots of links to related articles.  It is a "must read."




Coy Mathis: One Child's Fight to Change Gender

Trans Resources

ALGBTIC: Competencies for Working With Transgender Clients
Alabama Gender Alliance
Answers.Com Transgender Defined
Natl Center for Transgender Equality
PFLAG: Our Trans Children
Center for Gender Sanity
Transgender Organizations
Transgender Publications

Legal & Political Rights of Transgender People
TGI Justice Project
Transgender Employment Links
Jessica Pettitt
American Psychological Assn: Answers to Questions About Transgender Issues


Carmen Carrera

November 2013


Will She Be First Trans Victoria's Secret Model?


Carmen Carrera, born Christopher Roman, is a transgender American reality television personality, model, and burlesque performer, known for appearing on the third season of the Logo reality television series RuPaul's Drag Race, as well as its spin-off series RuPaul's Drag U. Although she identified as male during the third season of RuPaul's Drag Race, on May 1, 2012, ABC News reported that Carrera identifies as a transgender woman.  Carmen, who is from New Jersey, is of Puerto Rican ancestry.



Fans have petitioned for Carmen to join the ranks of Heidi Klum, Gisele Bundchen and Miranda Kerr as Victoria's Secret's newest Angel. The petition, which calls Carrera "a force to be reckoned with," says such a move by Victoria's Secret would "show the entire community that they embrace trans patrons." The petition has received more than 36,000 signatures, but Carrera told CNN that she has yet to hear from the lingerie company.


"Trans women are a part of the female population and I think that they deserve a respectful representation," Carrera said. "It would be pretty amazing for Victoria's Secret to be that huge corporation that embraces trans women. We shop there as well. I can only hope and dream, but I think it's time. And, I meet most of the requirements and have credibility as a model. They should do it."



Trans Model Carmen Carrera Wants to Walk the VS Show

CNN: Petition to Hire Carmen as Victoria's Secret Model

Carmen on Telemundo

Carmen's Stunning Photo Shoot
Huff Post: Carmen Discuss Transphobia


Genny Beemyn Speaks at BSC Campus

October 2013


Dr. Genny Beemyn presented a lecture on “Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation” on the campus of Birmingham-Southern College on Tuesday, October 22.


Genny Beemyn is one of the country’s leading experts on the experiences of transgender people and the development of transgender-inclusive policies and practices. A transgender individual herself, Dr. Beemyn has published and spoken extensively on the needs of transgender students and how colleges can address these needs. Her publications include “Trans on Campus: Measuring and Improving the Climate for Transgender Students” in On Campus with Women; “Transgender Issues on Campus” in Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation: Research, Policy, and Personal Perspectives; The Experiences and Needs of Transgender Community College Students” in Community College Journal of Research and Practice; and “Transgender History” in the forthcoming book Trans Bodies, Trans Selves.



In addition, Dr. Beemyn has edited or co-edited seven books/journal issues, including Queer Studies: A Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Anthology; Creating a Place for Ourselves: Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Community Histories; And special issues of the Journal of LGBT Youth on “Trans Youth” and “Supporting Transgender and Gender-Nonconforming Children and Youth.” Her most recent work, written with Dr. Due Rankin, is The Lives of Transgender People. The book, published by Columbia University Press, is based on the results of their research – one of the largest national studies of transgender people in the United States. Dr. Rankin and Dr. Beemyn also edited a special issue of the Journal of Homosexuality on “LGBTQ Campus Experiences.”


Dr. Beemyn is the director of the Stonewall Center at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, a board member and campus consultant from the Transgender Law and Policy Institute, and an editorial board member for the Journal of LGBT Youth, the Journal of Bisexuality, the Journal of Homosexuality, and the Journal of Students Affairs Research and Practice. She holds Master’s degrees in American Studies, African American Studies, and Higher Education, and a Ph.D. in African American Studies.


Gender Identity and Mental Health


May 2013


Parents sometimes do not know what to do when their children show interest in doing opposite-gender things or when their children want to BE the opposite gender. Parents now have the guidance of a growing faction of medical experts who no longer see this as something to be fixed. Last year, the American Psychiatric Association removed "gender identity disorder" from its list of mental health ailments. Some experts predict that views on gender will evolve in much the same way they have for sexual orientation, since homosexuality was removed as a mental illness nearly four decades ago.  Today, the gender spectrum includes those who are transgender, who see themselves as the opposite gender, and those who are gender variant, or gender nonconforming, whose gender is more “fluid.”  For kids, it means they identify part of themselves as boy and part as girl.



Gender Identity: A New Challenge for Schools

GLSEN Report: Gender Nonconformity in Elementary Schools

Transgender and Intersex Rights

Collection of Recent Articles on Gender Identity

Collection of Recent Articles on Transgender Rights


Gender Terminology

Gender -
A socially constructed collection of traits, behaviors, and meanings that we use as a standard for how biological differences should be represented.

Gender Conformity - When your gender identity and sex “match” (i.e. fit social norms). For example, a male who identifies and behaves in traditionally masculine ways and identifies as a man.

Gender Expression -
Outward behaviors and appearances (e.g. hair, clothing, voice, body language) by which people manifest their gender identity or gender choices.

Gender Identity -
A person’s fundamental sense of their own gender. This can include identifying as a combination of genders or refusing to label oneself with a gender. Gender identity is often confused with or considered tied to sexual orientation, but this is inaccurate. Gender identity and sexual orientation are exclusive off each other.

Gender Roles -
Are the socially constructed and culturally specific norms of behavior and appearance expectations imposed based on biological sex (i.e. femininity and masculinity).

Sex Identity -
The sex that a person sees themselves as. This can include refusing to label oneself.


(From Kerry John Poynter, TGNet Arizona, Goodrum, A.J., Adapted from Wikipedia)

Identity Development
Based on D’Augelli’s Model of LGB Identity Development (1994), the processes below do not necessarily occur linearly nor does every transgender person experience each process.  It should also be noted that the term “transgender” covers a wide variety of identities.  Individuals may experience the stages in different ways or to different degrees depending on how they specifically identify and the particular restrictions or prejudices that society places on that identity.

Exiting a Traditional Gendered Identity

Involves recognition that one is gender variant, attaching a label to this identity, and affirming oneself as gender variant through coming out to others.

Developing a Personal Transgender Identity

Entails achieving the stability that comes from knowing oneself in relation to other transgender people and challenging internalized transphobia.

Developing a Transgender Social Identity

Focuses on creating a support network of people who know and accept that one is gender variant.

Becoming a Transgender Offspring

Consists of coming out as transgender to family members and reevaluating relationships that may be disrupted by the disclosure.

Developing a Transgender Intimacy Status

Involves the creation of intimate physical and emotional relationships.

Entering a Transgender Community

Involves making a commitment to political and social action and understanding identity through challenging transphobia.


(From Bilodeau, B., 2005, Beyond the Gender Binary: New perspectives on Transgender Student Identity Development. Journal of Gay and Lesbian Issues in Education)


What is Binding?

June 2014


Transgender individuals who identify as FTM often benefit from the use of a chest binder. It is a compression garment used to flatten and conceal breasts. Many trans masculine and genderqueer people assigned female at birth naturally go through female puberty and develop breasts. This can cause extreme discomfort and body dysphoria and can also pose a safety issue when presenting as male. A chest binder can be very effective when used by a trans person to curb dysphoria and/or to assist with daily gender presentation.


Binding incorrectly (with an Ace bandage, for example) can cause problems with the back and lungs. However, a proper binder has been designed specifically to provide safe compression. Wearing a binder that fits properly may be uncomfortable, but it will not endanger health.


The TransActive Gender Center, located in Portland, Oregon, provides a holistic range of services and expertise to empower transgender and gender nonconforming children and youth. They sponsor a project called "In A Bind" that helps trans youth in need of a chest binder. Their website contains a wealth of information about gender identity and the issues and concerns of trans youth.




TransActive Gender Center

In A Bind Project


Stephen Ira

January 2013


Stephen Ira is a 21-year old transgender student at Sarah Lawrence College.  Born Kathlyn, he is the son of famous Hollywood actors Warren Beatty and Annette Benning.  He underwent sexual reassignment and began hormone treatment at the age of 14.



Stephen uploaded a video to the We Happy Trans website that shares “positive perspectives” on being transgender.  In the video we meet a young person who is smart, articulate, and energetic.  Stephen seems to represent a new generation of post-gay gender activists.  In the six-minute monologue from his dorm room, Stephen declares himself “a queer, a nerd fighter, a writer, an artist and a guy who needs a haircut."  He addresses a number of questions and issues and comments on a variety of subjects.  But mostly he celebrates who he is as a transgender person.  His video went viral, collecting over 500,00 hits.



Stephen Ira: We Happy Trans

New York Times: Generation LGBTQIA


Stacie Laughton


November 2012


New Hampshire joins neighboring Maine in making history on Election Night, welcoming its very first transgender lawmaker. The Nashua Telegraph reports that Stacie Laughton, a Democrat, beat out two Republican candidates for one of three seats in the state's House of Representatives. In the interview, Laughton said that she hopes her victory will inspire other LGBT candidates in both local and national politics.

“My hope is that now maybe we’ll see more people in the community running, maybe for alderman," she said. "We are people, too, who still have talents and ideas. And I hope that people won’t be afraid to get into politics, or any other position, for that matter. I want the community to feel inspired." Openly gay lawmakers have served in the New Hampshire Legislature before, including former Rep. Ray Buckley, now chairman of the New Hampshire Democratic Party. But as she told Nashua Patch in June, Laughton hopes area residents will be able to focus more on her message than her gender identity.  "I don't want being transgender to be a focal point," she said at the time. "I want to stand on the issues...because of who I am, I believe I can work between party lines and not let political partisanship hold us up when it comes to the important matters before us at the Statehouse."  It's been a truly benchmark year for LGBT rights, particularly in the New England area. Voters in Maine opted to approve same-sex marriage, making it the first time marriage equality has been legalized via the ballot. "We are thrilled for all Maine families and for the dedicated campaign that led this effort through to the end," Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin said in an email statement. "As we celebrate victory tonight we know we have added momentum to ensure that this victory is soon felt in every corner of this country."




Huffington Post: New Hampshire's First Transgender Legislator


Trans Resources


ALGBTIC: Competencies for Working With Transgender Clients
ALGBTIC: Transgender Resources

ALGBTICAL Slideshow: Transgender Resources

Transgender Law Center

Stephen Ira: We Happy Trans

Transgender Youth Presenting Challenges for Schools

Huff Post: Myths About Gender Confirmation Durgery

American Psychological Association: Transgender Resources
Facing Trans: Inclusion, Advocacy, Empowerment Workbook, Guide & Resource Packet
PFLAG: Our Trans Children
Jazz: Thoughts From a Transgender Child

Jessica Pettitt: Transgender Resource Guide
You Tube: Transgender Children - Out of the Shadows
Peer Educator: Gender Bending Your Ear
The Atlantic: Transgender Youth
How Have Trans-Inclusive Non-Discrimination Policies Changed Institutions?
You Tube: Comments from 7 Year Old Jazz
NASPA & ACPA: Transgender Resource Guide
ABC News: Understanding Transgender Children
Transgender Publications
Born With the Wrong Body
Motion Picture: TransAmerica (A Review)
Steps to Making a Campus More Trans-Inclusive
Frequently Asked Questions: Transgender Children
The View: Discussion on Transgender Children
Ethics & Gender Continuum
Laura's Playground

Far From the Tree: Transgender

Video: Time Elapsed Three-Year MTF Transition


Eden Lane

October 2012


Eden Lane is the host of the "In Focus With Eden Lane" show on Colorado's Public Television Network.  And she is the only openly transgender broadcast journalist in the US. Each week Lane speaks with artists, writers, directors, performers and others in theater, dance, music, film and television, drawing them out with her warm and inviting personality. And while her program is focused on her interview subjects, she, too, is sometimes in the spotlight, making history as the only known openly transgender mainstream television broadcaster in U.S., something that Lane says just sort of happened, and was nothing she ever set out to do.



Lane said, "I transitioned almost a decade ago. I became a married, suburban housewife and mom, and never really intended to step in the spotlight. If I had known that nobody else was identified as transgender as a news journalist on television, I probably wouldn't have done it. I probably would have been too afraid."  "I started working on television in Colorado just by accident," she said. "I was a guest on a panel for 'Colorado Outspoken,' which was an LGBT television newsmagazine. I was invited back again, and started being invited to do segments. I had done work in television but not since I had transitioned. So all of that work experience, all of that education, wasn't something I could publicize and own, because it was under a different name and a different identity. And without wanting to publicize that, so that there's that obvious 'before' and 'after' 'comparison, I just had to start from scratch. And I never really intended to. It just sort of happened that way. When the station was looking for extra help in covering the Democratic National Convention [in 2008 in Denver], I stepped up and worked for the station outside of the LGBT program. And then got offered a chance to have a platform to do this kind of programming."




Huffington Post: Eden Lane Discusses Her Career


Chastity Bono Transitioning to Chaz Bono


Sonny & Cher's Daughter is Transgender

A rep for Chastity Bono, the child of Sonny and Cher, confirms that Chastity Bono, 40 years old, is in the process of transitioning from female to male. Chastity's new name is Chaz.  After many years of consideration, he has made the courageous decision to honor his true identity. It is Chaz's hope that his choice to transition will open the hearts and minds of the public regarding this issue, just as his 'coming out' did nearly 20 years ago.



Daily News: Chastity Bono Changing Gender From Female to Male
E On-Line: Chastity Bono to Become a Man
ABC News: Chastity Bono Gives Voice to Invisible Community
MSNBC: Cher's Daughter Undergoing Sex Reassignment


Janet Mock


October 2012



Janet Mock is the Editor of People.Com, the online version of People Magazine.  Last May, Mock came out as a transgender woman with her life story detailed in the June issue of Marie Claire magazine.  In it, she says she wasn't looking to be the "poster child for transsexuals," but because of the string of LGBT youth suicides and murders, Mock felt compelled to speak up and advocate for her community. Because of her activism, Mock has had numerous honors including being named to The Grio's 100 most influential people and Sundance Channel's top 10 LGBT voices. Mock will receive the Sylvia Rivera Activist Award, which honors the late transgender activist, by the Sylvia Rivera Law Project in November 2012.



Huffington Post: Janet Mock is LGBT History Month Icon


Alabama Gender Alliance


Gender variant individuals are fortunate to have a support group in Alabama.  The group is called the Alabama Gender Alliance.  Their mission is to create an online utopia, 3D social club, and public advocacy group for the gender variant, transgendered, transexual, intersexed, genderqueer, cross-dressing, and transvestite residents of Alabama, as well as the Significant Others, Friends, Family, and Allies (SOFFAs) who love them.



J. D. ‘Ox’ Freeman is the Founder and President of Alabama Gender Alliance.  Membership is free and easy. Once your membership is active, all of the free features of the on-line community are available, including polls, a photo gallery, e-mail dialog among all members, a chat room, and an event calendar.



Alabama Gender Alliance E-Mail  
Alabama Gender Alliance on FaceBook

Alabama Gender Alliance Google Site


Kylar Brodus


June 2012


The Senate Health and Labor Committee, chaired by Senator Tom Harkin, held a hearing on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, a bill that would create a federal ban on discrimination against gays, lesbians, bisexual, and transgender people in the workplace. The measure has been introduced in every congressional session since 1994.



The witness panel included one openly transgender person, Kylar Brodus, founder of the Trans People of Color Coalition, who spoke in support of the ENDA bill.  Brodus is the first transgender person to testify at a US Senate hearing.




C-SPAN Video: Senate Hearing on ENDA
Metro Weekly: Senate Hearing Includes Trans, Business and Legal Witnesses
Washington Blade: First Transgender Person to Testify at US Senate

Transgender Beauty Queen


April 2012

Jenna Talackova, a 23-year old Canadian beauty pageant contestant from Vancouver, who was disqualified when the Miss Universe Canada organizers discovered she was transgender, said she had been devastated by the decision and wanted a clear change in the rules.  After initially disqualifying Jenna Talackova, organizers of the Miss Universe beauty pageant reversed course and said she can participate afterall.



In a statement, the Miss Universe Organization said Jenna Talackova can compete provided "she meets the legal gender recognition requirements of Canada, and the standards established by other international competitions."  The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) commended the pageant organizer's decision Monday night.  "The Miss Universe Organization made the right decision and has taken an important first step," the group said.  Talackova was one of the 65 finalists selected to contend for the title of Miss Universe Canada and the honor of representing her country in the Miss Universe competition.  But organizers told her last month she could not compete because she lied about having undergone sexual reassignment surgery and did not meet requirements for the pageant. At the time, the Miss Universe Organization said current rules state that all contestants must be a "naturally born female."  In a 2010 interview in Thailand, where she was competing for Miss International Queen, a competition for transgender women, Talackova said she knew she was a girl at age 4. She said she started hormone therapy at age 14 and underwent sexual reassignment surgery at 19.



CNN: Transgender Miss Universe Contestant
MS NBC News: Transgender Beauty Queen Criticizes Donald Trump
Associated Press: Transgender Pageant Hopeful Wants Rule Change
World Health Organization: Trans People Aren't Sick


ALMHCA Transgender Workshop

February 2008


ALMHCA (Alabama Mental Health Counselors Association) presented its Winter Workshop on February 22, 2008.  It featured training on transgender issues.  The title of the seminar was, "Beyond Barbie, Ken, and the DSM: Working with the Lived Experiences of Transgendered Clients."


The presentation was developed through the research and clinical work of the Dr. Stacee Reicherzer, Ph.D., LPC, NCC, who identifies and lives as transgender.  While a good deal of the presentation was directly informed by Dr. Reicherzer’s clinical practices, her dissertation research, which developed a grounded theory through the use of transgender narratives, was the primary source of skill-emphasis.

This included, as educational content, a demonstration of sex, sexuality, and gender as continua; skill-building in inviting client language, and working with clients’ named experiences of gender; guidelines for supporting clients’ rights to choose hormones and surgical reassignments; and counselor resources for support of the process of working with transgender clients.   The presentation was intended primarily for counselors who work in community mental health and private practice settings that transgender clients may access in seeking care.

Audience members learned about:
the distinctions between and within sex, sexuality, and gender; the emerging language that transgenders use in describing gender experiences, with emphasis in the process of creating language as a means of naming self as a gendered being; established protocols that are outlined in the World Professional Association of Transgender Health (WPATH) Standards of Care for the purpose of diagnosis and assessment for clients who are seeking hormone replacement therapies and sexual reassignment surgeries; and additional counseling skills that transgenders have specifically identified as needs of the counseling profession.


Dr. Stacee L. Reicherzer, LPC, NCC is a counselor and counselor educator whose primary clinical and research emphasis has focused on gender and sexual diversity across the lifespan. She is the current president of the Texas Association of Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Issues in Counseling (TAGLBIC), and has recently been invited to participate in an international delegation, hosted by Columbia University, that studies the global impact of shame and humiliation.

Dr. Reicherzer has provided numerous lectures, workshops, and press interviews related to GLBTQIQ issues, including a special interview that featured for an episode of the Discovery Health network series, Dr. G: Medical Examiner. She currently is in the process of writing a textbook chapter on qualitative research of transgender issues, as well as a textbook chapter on bisexuality and gender identity development among adolescent males.

Dr. Reicherzer is philosophically guided by relational-cultural theory (RCT), and is a trained practitioner of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). In her private practice, she specializes in work with survivors of hate crimes and sexual abuse, and has clinical skill in addressing the spectrum of dissociative disorders, PTSD, somatoform disorders, and borderline personality disorder. Additionally, she provides consultation and training services that focus on diversity celebration and increased efforts toward collaboration in organization development.




Ethics & Gender Continuum


Transgender Needs


They may identify as heterosexual, so they may not be dealing with issues of sexuality.  However, depending on how they sexually identify, transgender people may face discrimination from both heterosexuals and LGB people.


They may experience more verbal and physical attacks than most LGB people if they cross-dress or otherwise “look gender variant.”


They are generally less accepted in society than LGB people, in large part due to ignorance.  There is little understanding of transgender lives; they are not visible in popular culture beyond stereotypes and almost no research has been done on their experiences.


They sometimes experience a lack of acceptance and support from the LGB community.


As a result of the lack of acceptance and support in the dominant culture and in the LGB community, they often lack a strong community and positive role models or images.  Consequently, transpeople, especially trans youth, may feel isolated and marginalized.


Transpeople may want to remain closeted because of the legitimate fear of how they will be treated by their professors, employers, co-workers, friends, and others in their field.


Transpeople often have a hard time finding medical help that is knowledgeable and understanding concerning transgender issues.


If transitioning, they will need to change their identification as well as other records and documents.  Keep in mind that different states and institutions have different rules about when and if these changes are possible.


They are especially vulnerable to attack, harassment, and/or embarrassment when trying to use the gender appropriate bathroom.


Transpeople often have others refer to them as a gender different than the one with which they wish to identify or insist on calling them by their given name even though they have changed it.


(From Beemyn, B., 2003, Serving the needs of transgender college students. Journal of Gay and Lesbian Issues in Education,1, 33-50)

Hardships for Transgender Youth

Transgender youth often face enormous hardships when they acknowledge and express their gender identity.


They may be thrown out of the house when their family discovers that they are transgender, often forcing them to live on the streets.


They typically face harassment and abuse in school to such an extent that they quit, which makes it hard for them to get decent-paying jobs (for example, a survey of more than 250 transgender people in Washington, D.C. found that forty percent had not finished high school and another 40 percent were unemployed).


Even if they are able to get an education, they have difficulty finding and keeping almost any kind of job because of discrimination, forcing some to become sex workers.


If they live on the streets or are a sex worker, they are at a greater risk for abusing drugs, becoming infected with HIV, and being subjected to anti-transgender violence.


Many lack access to health care, including proper counseling and medical supervision for those who are in the process of transitioning.  And when they do get medical treatment, they frequently face discrimination and hostility from health-care workers.  Consequently, some transsexuals decide to treat themselves by buying underground hormones, which can contain dangerous if not deadly chemicals.


Because gender reassignment surgery can cost more than $100,000 and is not covered by most health insurance policies, even most middle-class transsexuals cannot afford the procedures.


The ultimate result is often high rates of depression, drug and alcohol abuse, and thoughts of suicide among transgender people (thirty-five percent of the respondents to the D.C. survey mentioned above reported that they had seriously considered suicide).


Many transgender people who can “pass” will choose to remain closeted, so trans youth often do not have visible role models and mentors.


(From Beemyn, B., 2004, The Legal and Political Rights of Transgender People, Ohio State University, Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Student Services Web)


Transgender Emergence

New Book by Arlene Istar Lev


Explore an ecological strength-based framework for the treatment of gender-variant clients This comprehensive book provides you with a clinical and theoretical overview of the issues facing transgendered/transsexual people and their families. Transgender Emergence: Therapeutic Guidelines for Working with Gender-Variant People and Their Families views assessment and treatment through a nonpathologizing lens that honors human diversity and acknowledges the role of oppression in the developmental process of gender identity formation.


Specific sections of Transgender Emergence: Therapeutic Guidelines for Working with Gender-Variant People and Their Families address the needs of gender-variant people as well as transgender children and youth. The issues facing gender-variant populations who have not been the focus of clinical care, such as intersexed people, female-to-male transgendered people, and those who identify as bigendered, are also addressed.

The book examines... the six stages of transgender emergence... coming out as transsexual or transgender as a normative process of gender identity development... thinking "outside the box" in the deconstruction of sex and gender... the difference between sexual orientation and gender identity, as well as the convergence, overlap, and integration of these parts of the self... the power of personal narrative in gender identity development... etiology and typographies of transgenderism and transsexuality... treatment models that emerge from various clinical perspectives... alternative treatment modalities based on gender variance as a normative lifecycle developmental process.


Transgender Emergence Website

Trans America


December 2005


"Transamerica," a 2005 film, starring Felicity Huffman, tells the story of a pre-operative male-to-female transsexual who takes an unexpected journey when she learns that she fathered a son, now a teenage runaway named Toby.


Southern Californian Bree Osbourne, who was formerly Stanley Chupak, has finally received the news for which she has been waiting: she has been approved for male-to-female sexual reassignment surgery. But before her therapist will allow her to go through with the surgery, Bree has to reconnect with Toby, who was looking for Stanley, his biological father.  



The film was written and directed by Duncan Tucker.  Felicity Huffman (from "Desperate Housewives") won a Golden Globe award and an Oscar award nomination for her performance. Her acting skill fills Bree with insecurity, pathos, warmth, humor, and growth which ultimately transforms the audience's involvement from freak show curiosity to empathy and identification.  One critic described the film thusly: "It's not about sexuality, fetish, or camp. It's a movie about otherness, transformation, family, and ultimately acceptance."




Movie Database Info and Comments


Helpful Trans Tips


Outing: Remember that revealing the transgender status of any transgender person without his or her expressed permission has the same potential for harm as outing a gay man, lesbian, or bisexual man or woman. Outing is an invasion of privacy.


Appearance: Do not assume that someone who appears to be cross-dressed is a "transvestite." That Person may or may not be living full-time in their presenting gender, or they may intend to do so in the future.


Usage Tips: Instead of the stigmatizing "transvestite", use Male Cross-dresser or Female Cross-dresser if it's clear that they are not living full-time nor intend to do so.


Living Status: If a transgender person is living full-time in a gender not associated with their birth sex, that person should be referred to at all times with terms appropriate to their presenting gender, regardless of their surgical status or body state (see below).


Usage Tips:

Transgender Woman is appropriate for Male-To-Female persons.

Transgender Man is appropriate for Female-to-Male persons.

Transgender Person is appropriate for someone of either above types.

Transgender People is appropriate for mixed groups.


Surgical Status: Almost all transsexuals – pre-operative, post-operative or non-operative – and many transgender people are extremely sensitive about their surgical status and/or their body's physical state.  Questions about this should be avoided or, if medically necessary, asked very sensitively.  Moreover, this information should be considered confidential and should not be shared with others unless it is medically necessary.


Usage Tips: Regardless of their surgical status, the appropriate term for a Male-To-Female transsexual is Transsexual Woman, and for a Female-to-Male transsexual, Transsexual Man.


Avoid Aspersion by Using Quotation Marks: Never put pronouns or possessive adjectives of transgender persons in quotes. Never put their sexual orientations or genitalia in quotes.


Pronouns and Possessive Adjectives: It is extremely offensive to refer to transgender persons using pronouns and possessive adjectives that refer to their birth sex. 


Usage Tips: Use pronouns and adjectives appropriate to the transgender person gender expression. If you are uncertain, ask what they prefer.  Some people prefer the new pronoun ze (pronounced zee”) in lieu of she/he, and the new possessive adjective hir (pronounced “here”) in lieu of his/her.


Self-Identification: Not all transgender people use the same terminology to describe themselves. When in doubt, just ask an individual transgender person how they wish to be identified.


Usage Tips: If you’re not sure how to address someone, just ask.  Or simply use their first name or last name. It's sometimes customary for patients or clients in clinical situations to be addressed by their last name when it’s time to see their providers.


Relevant Information













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Association for Lesbian Gay Bisexual & Transgender Issues in Counseling of Alabama