Trans Youth Australia, a new internet group, is helping young trans people from around the country get in touch and share advice on their specific concerns.
Established two months ago by Viola Adams, a 23-year-old from South Australia who started transitioning in 2006, it was started out of a selfish desire to talk to others.
I started it, a little bit selfishly, but also because I wanted to help others, Adams said.
There are other groups online that do the same sort of thing but they don’t cater to youth. I found that older crowd, who are generally 50 or over, what they’re going through doesn’t really relate to what we’re going through.
It’s the same core issue, but I’ve just found that the younger ones are more interested in making a life of being a woman or a man, rather than the older ones who have lived a lot of their life already in their un-chosen gender.
The online group has the added benefit of creating a network for people living away from the major cities where trans services are concentrated.
In South Australia, there are no physical groups for young people and it’s a similar case in other parts of the country as well. So, quite a few of our members already are from outback Victoria and rural NSW, which hopefully helps those people.
For me, the group is about meeting other people who are going through the exact same thing as I am. So that might just be about having a good chat to someone who isn’t going to judge you. Or it might be about actually asking a question of someone who’s already been through a certain period.
With the group rapidly growing, as more young people look for the same thing, Adams is now working to turn it into a more official website, which will not only provide avenues for networking but also feature articles from medical experts, counsellors and community groups.
Adams hopes the site will be operational by January.
info: To join the current group go to http://au.groups.yahoo.com/group/tsyouthaust/ or look out for the website transyouthaustralia.com in 2009.