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American Public Health Association
133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition
December 10-14, 2005
Philadelphia, PA
APHA 2005
4040.0: Tuesday, December 13, 2005 - 8:30 AM

Abstract #97692

Transgender youth: Gender nonconformity, gender expression milestones, and parents' responses

Arnold H. Grossman, PhD, LMSW1, Anthony R. D'Augelli, PhD2, Tamika Jarrett Howell, PhD (cand)1, and Steven Hubbard, PhD (cand)3. (1) Department of Applied Psychology, New York University, 239 Greene Street - Suite 400, New York, NY 10003, 212-998-5615, arnold.grossman@nyu.edu, (2) Department of Human Development & Family Studies, Pennsylvania State University, 105Q White Building, State College, PA 16802, (3) Department of Administration, Leadership & Technology, New York University, 239 Greene Street - Suite 300, New York, NY 10003

Children learn about gender very early in their development: most two-year olds know whether they are boys or girls, and by age three, they begin to apply the gender labels of “he” and she.” By four or five, they have learned many social stereotypes associated with gender roles. In their play, nurses, teachers and secretaries are girls, while doctors, firefighters and truck drivers are boys. By the time they enter school at age five, most children express stereotypic ideas of what each sex should do, wear, or feel, and react approving or disapprovingly toward each other, according to their choice of sex-appropriate behavioral and play patterns. However, some boys consistently choose dolls over trucks and sports, and state they wish to be girls; and some girls prefer aggressive play, sports and boys as playmates and state they wish to be boys. These children are known as transgender. A new study conducted by the investigators studied a sample of 55 transgender youth to examine their gender expression developmental milestones, gender nonconforming activities, and parents' responses to them as children. Initial analyses indicate children who are more gender nonconforming disclose their transgender identity or parents ask them if they are gay or transgender at younger ages than those who are not as gender atypical. Additionally, those who are more gender nonconforming experience more psychological and physical abuse from their parents than those who are not as gender atypical. Implications for education, counseling, and consultation will be presented.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants should be able to

Keywords: Gender, Youth

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

I wish to disclose that I have NO financial interests or other relationship with the manufactures of commercial products, suppliers of commercial services or commercial supporters.

LGBT Youth Research

The 133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition (December 10-14, 2005) of APHA