Coming out as transgender can be a significant and often challenging experience for people. As a supportive friend, family member, or ally, here are some ways you can help someone who has just come out as transgender:
- Validate their identity: It's important to acknowledge and respect the person's gender identity. Use their preferred name and pronouns, and affirm that their identity is valid and real. Avoid making assumptions or asking invasive questions about their body or transition plans. If you're curious about something just google it!
- Offer emotional support: Coming out as transgender can be emotionally taxing. Be there to listen and provide emotional support without judgment. Offer a safe space for the person to express their thoughts, feelings, and concerns. Respect their privacy and confidentiality, and let them set the pace for their own journey.
- Educate yourself: Take the initiative to educate yourself about transgender identities, experiences, and issues. Familiarize yourself with appropriate language and terminology, as well as the challenges and discrimination that transgender individuals may face. This will enable you to better understand and support the person who has come out.
- Respect their choices: Transitioning is a personal and individual process, and each person's experience may differ. Respect their choices, including their decisions about medical transition, social transitioning, and disclosure. Avoid offering unsolicited advice or opinions, and support their autonomy in navigating their gender identity.
- Offer practical assistance: Transitioning may involve various practical aspects, such as changing legal documents, finding appropriate healthcare providers, or dealing with discrimination. Offer practical assistance, such as helping with paperwork, accompanying them to appointments, or advocating on their behalf when needed.
- Be an ally: Show your support by being an ally in your words and actions. Speak up against discrimination, prejudice, and misinformation. Respect their privacy and confidentiality, and do not disclose their transgender without their consent. Offer your support publicly if they are comfortable with it, and be prepared to stand by them in the face of challenges. You can even wear my I love Trans People Shirt or buy them some gender affirming clothes from my website.
- Encourage self-care: Transitioning can be physically and emotionally demanding. Encourage the person to prioritize self-care and well-being. This may include taking care of their physical health, seeking professional support if needed, and engaging in activities that bring them joy and fulfillment. TRANS JOY IS RESISTANCE! You know me i'd def suggest art as a self care practice.