Mental Health of Transgender Youth: The Role of Family, School, and Community in Promoting Resilience

Risk-based models are similar to fire engines that put out the fire after it has already started. It helps for professionals to focus on developing resilience programmes and identifying potential risks in the lives of trans youth. Listening to trans youth and their families is crucial to learning about their experiences and adapting and modifying research based programmes to include those experiences. Current research suggests that family support decreases risk factors in trans youth. Learning how to develop holistic supports for the family unit will always involve challenges, but we must constantly rise to these challenges to ensure the fire engines remain in their stations and fire damage is minimized. A vision for the future reflects a holistic focus on all the factors that can impact healthy gender development for all children. Essentially, I feel this has to begin with education, especially early education. The school curriculum needs to - and is starting to - include human diversity in all its forms and family formation in all its forms. In turn, the children of the future may not perceive difference as a threat but rather as humanity.

Year: 2018
Author: Jenifer K. McGuire, Ph.D., MPH, Center for Family Development, University of Minnesota Derek Mahan, Graduate Research Assistant, University of Minnesota Vanessa Lacey, B.A., Transgender Equality Network Ireland Mary Clark Hoelscher, Ph.D., Out for Equity,