“I Am Afraid for Those Kids Who Might Find Death Preferable”: Parental Figures’ Reactions and Coping Strategies to Bans on Gender Affirming Care for Transgender and Gender Diverse Youth

Roberto L. Abreu, Jules P. Sostre, Kirsten A. Gonzalez, Gabriel M. Lockett, Em Matsuno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Research has documented that parental figures of trans and gender diverse (TGD) youth often struggle with fear, grief, and stress as a result of antitransgender oppression. However, there is a dearth of research about how parental figures of TGD youth are impacted by antitransgender state and federal laws and bills. The present study aimed to explore parental figures’ reactions and coping strategies with recent proposed and enacted laws and bills in the United States restricting access to gender-affirming healthcare for TGD youth. A sample of 138 parental figures of TGD youth who currently or previously lived in the United States participated in an online survey where they shared their reactions and coping strategies as a result of current antitransgender laws and bills. Thematic analysis revealed four themes depicting participants' cognitive reactions, including: (a) violation of rights, (b) increased stigma, (c) decreased quality of healthcare, and (d) support for child’s journey. Also, three themes emerged about participants’ emotional reactions, including: (a) fear and anxiety, (b) anger, and (c) relief. Additionally, participants shared narratives about how they are coping with these antitransgender laws and bills, including: (a) activism and advocacy, (b) educating others, (c) seeking support from communities/ groups, and (d) relocation and avoidance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)500-510
Number of pages11
JournalPsychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity
Volume9
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 29 2021

Keywords

  • Legislation
  • Mental health
  • Parents
  • Transgender health
  • Transgender youth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Psychology(all)

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