Posted: August 13, 2015

Supporting and Caring for our Gender-Expansive Youth


Supporting and Caring for our Gender-Expansive Youth presents descriptive data on transgender youth (n = 319) and youth with a non-binary gender identity (n = 606), collectively known as "gender-expansive youth." Responses are a subset of the sample from Growing Up LGBT in America, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation's 2012 survey of 10,000 LGBT-identified U.S. youth ages 13 to 17. The report presents data on participants' experiences of sexuality- and gender-related openness, maltreatment, and support at home, at school, online, and in their larger community. It compares gender-expansive youth to a panel of non-LGBT youth, and to cisgender (non-transgender) LGB respondents. Gender-expansive youth fared worse than other groups on most measures of personal and social well-being. These youth were less likely than cisgender LGB youth to report acceptance by their peers. A substantial minority reported peer exclusion and verbal harassment. Just 4% of gender-expansive youth reported being "very happy," compared to 27% of heterosexual cisgender males. 27% reported that their families were "very accepting" of LGBT people, and 33% reported families that were "not very" or "not at all" accepting. The report discusses the links between gender-based harassment and sexual orientation stigma, and reviews ways that peers, caretakers and professionals can support gender-expansive youth. It includes a list of resources for gender-expansive youth and their supporters. The report was produced by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation in collaboration with Gender Spectrum.


Youth, LGBT, Gender, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Pansexual, Non-binary


Human Rights Campaign Foundation