Rainbow Families has launched a support resource for trans and gender diverse parents, providing practical advice and answers for both parents and medical practitioners.

The guide, which was researched and written by LGBTIQ+ advocate Jac Tomlins, details the personal stories of trans and gender diverse parents, as well as their partners and children.

The diverse stories help to provide insight into the shared, common experiences of trans and gender diverse parents in Australia.

“The stories offer the opportunity for identification and a strength that comes from knowing that someone else has walked this sometimes difficult path before,” Rainbow Families said in a statement.

“No-one needs to ever feel alone in their journey, or that of a loved one, to be their most genuine selves.”

Tomlins said working on the guide was a privilege.

“There are some extraordinary stories in this resource,” she said.

“Stories that will provide health professionals with important insights, and other trans and gender diverse parents with advice, confidence, and hope.”

Working with trans and gender diverse parents, Rainbow Families said they created the resource to assist with the process of transitioning in community, and as a means to relieve much of the pressure trans and gender diverse parents experience to educate and inform others.

Co-Chair of Rainbow Families, Vanessa Gonzalez, said trans and gender diverse parents face unique barriers when raising a family.

“For families where one or more parents are trans or gender diverse, the everyday challenges of raising children can be intensified by experiences of misunderstanding, exclusion, or even hostility and hatred,” she said.

“There are very few resources available that provide guidance for trans and gender diverse parents and we wanted to change that.”

The guide covers a broad spectrum of areas, from explaining your gender transition to a child and reassuring them they aren’t losing a ‘mother’ or ‘father’ but are gaining a more authentic parent, to utilising supportive teachers and principals at school and navigating fertility clinics and IVF.

“We hope that the resource will be of value to health and human service providers who work with trans and gender diverse parents,” Rainbow Families said in a statement.

“We know there are currently very few supportive and informed health practitioners who can work effectively with trans and gender diverse people and their families.

“Any practitioner reading these stories will gain a detailed insight into the lived experiences of their clients or patients and some guidance about how they might best support them.”

To read the guide, visit: www.rainbowfamilies.com.au/trans_and_gender_diverse_parents_guide_released

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