Glimmering Podcast

Where we learn out loud to love deeply, grow successfully, and live justly.

Talk to Your Kids About Gender Identity Diversity & Inclusion

Today is Transgender Day of Remembrance - a memorialization of the precious souls murdered/executed by transphobes.

I don't think any one of you here has any intention to raise your child to be so disgusted (so afraid) of another person that they'd be willing to kill.

But as we know, Intention < Impact, so lend me your ears.

If you do not talk to your kids explicitly about how precious and beautiful transgender people are, they will not automatically believe it about transgender people.

Generalized, universalized "Love Everyone" language doesn't work - we have lots of data to support this.

You need to be explicit.

You can begin with "Everyone is precious." But you must continue with, "This transgender person is precious, and therefore we must do what we can to make sure they feel just as beloved and safe in this world as you do."

If you leave it unspoken, children will assume omission/exclusion, not inclusion.

These are three books we checked out from the library this week. They all introduce the idea of internal and external/assumed identity, and inclusion. They are a wonderful springboard for longer conversations with your kids about gender identity.

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Red: A Crayon's Story, by Michael Hall
A crayon is assigned Red at birth and discovers their true identity once expectations of identity performance are released.

Neither, by Airlie Anderson
A Neither is born into the land of This or That and journeys to the Land of All to find true inclusion.

They She He Me: Free to Be! by Maya Christina Gonzalez and Matthew SG
A gender and racially inclusive introduction to pronouns with an excellent educational section in the back for caregivers.

All our kids (agest 6, 9, and 13) loved these books even though they are geared for an even younger demographic, and we had some great conversations come from them!

If you feel shaky on how to approach the big subjects of diversity and inclusion, this article offers a very solid list of 13 Tips on How to Talk to Kids About Diversity and Difference. Parents of cis kids, especially, please do this work with your children so that trans and gender diverse kids can live in a safer world.