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For Families with Transgender Children, Finding Support Can Be A Challenge

Helen Taylor / Flickr

Jenn Burleton is the founder of Portland-based TransActive, an outreach and advocacy organization for transgender youth and their families. She says progress for transgender rights can be slow-moving but that small victories, like Multnomah County’s recent requirement that all new county buildings include gender-neutral bathrooms, inspire changes on a larger scale. Burleton says one of her goals with TransActive is to create resources for transgender children and their parents. 

Kit Crosland is an employee at TransActive. He says he knew from a young age that some of his body parts didn’t match up with how he felt. Born female, he identifies as a transgender male. He says he didn’t know how to communicate that to his parents or his peers, who saw him as a girl. He says he realized looking back that his parents weren’t prepared to understand how he felt or what he needed. Now, at the age of 26, Crosland says he hopes to help transgender children and their families with these communication challenges through his work with TransActive.

We’ll talk with Burleton, Crosland, and the mother of a transgender child.

Are you the parent of a transgender child? What are some of the challenges you face? Are you a transgender adult? What resources did you have — or wish you had — when you were growing up?

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