Coming out when young: reader advice

From a woman in her early 20s

i started slowly with a little phrase here or there about something that i found cute or attractive about female attire and things. i also used more feminie words. slowely started not talking about masculine things as much about the things males are supposed to talk about. did things like keeping my nails cleaner and lookin alot nicer (was noticed by all family) told them i felt cleaner by doing that and shaved as much as i could and talked about how i liked not havin facial hair and how it felt to be smooth. slowly showed more of a perspective to the female side. even started to have a more feminine walk. eventually she started to kind of change a view at me but didnt really remark on it till i was able to tell her. her and it kind of soften the blow to her. also i dont live with my dad and nor have i ever really we dont have a relationship so i dont know how this will work with a father figure around. like i was sayin this did soften the blow to my mom and startin to rebuild a relationship as we go ( i hope we are ) wish i had known about your site before most of what i went thro and what i am goin thro. by the way i am 24 and came out when i was 23 to other people. so i dont know how this will really affect girls younger than me but should have the same desired affect as what i did. thanx for everything you have done with your site it means the world to me.

A 15-year old reader writes:

I tried to come out to my parents 3 times, resulting in arguments and hurt feelings (mainly my own and my mother’s). But a few days ago, things got so bad, since my parents wouldn’t at all let me be myself, I attempted suicide. (Which I think was brought on by a combination of things including: harassment at school, being ts, my parent’s past denial, and my eating disorder: Anorexia, which all I deal with every day!) Well, the next day I went to school and told the guidance counselor, who is very supportive of me.

Well, because of school policy, they had to call my parents and I had to have a psychiatric evaluation.

Well, I had been to a physiologist before, last may, when I first tried to tell my parents, and they took me back to the same person, who is also very supportive of me, and I have kept in touch with her via e-mail.

To get straight to the point, she gave me no option, and brought them in and told them everything they needed to hear, but had refused to listen to. It’s really weird, when I told them, they would try not to believe me, and determine some way to make it my fault, telling me I had “made it up” ‘it’ being my feelings. But when she told them, since they were forced to listen, they got to hear what they needed to hear, and now they actually want to help me anyway they can.

I guess my advice is to somehow get into a physiologist if you can, and have them help you tell parents. It worked for me, and I think parents are much more prone to believe a professional, no matter how many times you try and tell parents.

Things you can do before your parents know
en français
I got a letter the other day from someone who still lives with her parents:
I haven’t told my parents about wanting to be a girl but I would like to start transitioning. I would like to know some tips that will help in my transition without my parents finding out. What things can I get that will help in the process?
This is a great question!
Many young women are afraid to tell their parents they are transsexual while they still live at home. I sure was. In some cases, this is with very good reason. We sometimes get kicked out of the house, especially if our parents are religious or strict. However, parents are generally getting better about accepting TS children and actually helping them out.
When they came out to their parents, many young TSs say that their parents had already suspected they were gay or maybe transgender. They may have already found some hints and never mentioned it to you. They may have even asked you. Then again, they could be in complete denial, even if they have had some clues.
My basic advice is not to come out to your parents without thinking it all through. Read my section on coming out first. However, while you’re planning on how and when to tell your parents, you don’t have to sit around doing nothing.

A note from a 13-year-old reader

Hi,

I recently told my mom about my problems. Maybe you can put this on your site for others? Anyway, at first I thought my mom would be unaccepting. I thought she would literally kick me out of the house because of my transsexuality.

Before telling your parents, you have to know before hand if they actually care about your problems, and if they would still love you no matter what happens after the hard conversation. So this is what I did, with some help of your site:

I said I needed help, and if your parents are nosy enough to even care, they would say, “What is wrong?” You would then have to say something like I want to tell you something but I am not sure if I can tell you. It is important to pressure your parents, and if they continue saying what is the problem and getting worried, you know they will love you even afterhand. This is exactly what I did and my mom seemed to accept beforehand, so I told her of my troubles. I also showed my pain with tears. That came easy, and I told her what I thought her reaction would be. She then told me how that was like nonsence! 

So those who may think their parents would not accept them, give the test and if they fail to seem to care then I would hold off. If they end up finding out and accepting, you finally feel much relief. This is for all child transsexuals as a note of advice.


A 15-year old reader writes:

I tried to come out to my parents 3 times, resulting in arguments and hurt feelings (mainly my own and my mother’s). But a few days ago, things got so bad, since my parents wouldn’t at all let me be myself, I attempted suicide. (Which I think was brought on by a combination of things including: harassment at school, being ts, my parent’s past denial, and my eating disorder: Anorexia, which all I deal with every day!) Well, the next day I went to school and told the guidance counselor, who is very supportive of me.

Well, because of school policy, they had to call my parents and I had to have a psychiatric evaluation.

Well, I had been to a physiologist before, last may, when I first tried to tell my parents, and they took me back to the same person, who is also very supportive of me, and I have kept in touch with her via e-mail.

To get straight to the point, she gave me no option, and brought them in and told them everything they needed to hear, but had refused to listen to. It’s really weird, when I told them, they would try not to believe me, and determine some way to make it my fault, telling me I had “made it up” ‘it’ being my feelings. But when she told them, since they were forced to listen, they got to hear what they needed to hear, and now they actually want to help me anyway they can.

I guess my advice is to somehow get into a physiologist if you can, and have them help you tell parents. It worked for me, and I think parents are much more prone to believe a professional, no matter how many times you try and tell parents.