5 Ways You Can Help Transgender Youth

posted: 07/30/15
by: TLCme

We've been so touched to see all of the support pouring in for "I Am Jazz" star Jazz Jennings and her transgender awareness campaign, #JazzHands. Looking for more ways to support teens and kids like Jazz? Keep reading.

1. Use the proper terminology when speaking about or to them. Even transgender people understand that the various terms associated with them can be confusing, so they welcome you to ask questions about how they'd like to be addressed. Also, this video created by our friends at Discovery Digital is quite handy:

2. Support causes to make life at school easier for trans kids. We are particularly moved by this petition to get large retail stores to carry binders for female-to-male trans teens. These chest-compressing undergarments help some transgender youth who can't afford gender-reassignment surgery to conceal their growing breasts, making it easier for them to fit in with their gender at school.

3. Show your #JazzHands. In addition to being a fun thing to do on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, when you post photos of #JazzHands you are supporting the Trans Kids Purple Rainbow foundation, which is committed to educating schools, peers, places of worship, the medical community, government bodies, and society in general, in an effort to seek fair and equal treatment for all trans youth.

4. Listen to trans youth. The statistics about trans youth suicide are staggering, and are often the result of their feeling like they don't have the support of those in their community. Even just providing a welcoming ear could do wonders for these kids who face a world of conflict. You can start with this Huffington Post slideshow of trans youth stories.

5. Watch "I Am Jazz." Believe it or not, just by watching this show, you're helping to support trans youth by learning more about how teens like Jazz Jennings are very much like all other teens in America, who face the pressures of school, sports and finding a boyfriend or girlfriend. It's on TLC every Wednesday night at 10/9 Central, in case you forgot.