We Can All Advocate for Acceptance
In its latest issue, California Health Report addresses the issue of “bullying at every turn,” from home to school and the doctor’s office, experienced by transgender and gender-diverse youth. Like other groups facing discrimination, they are more often victims of prejudice and violence and are disproportionately affected by depression, anxiety and risk of suicide. But when gender diverse children are affirmed in their identity at home and at school, they do not display increased pathology and have no more anxiety or depression than their siblings. Similarly, transgender and gender-diverse adults raised in highly accepting families have dramatically better mental health outcomes than those whose families reject them. This certainly applies to individuals who live with mental health conditions. Feeling acceptance and support at home, school, work and in our communities is fundamental to better mental health outcomes.