519 – The Challenges of Working with Transgender Youth

Is It Gender . . . And/Or Something Else?
Margaret Nichols & Laura Jacobs

Transgender identity has achieved so much cultural support and affirmation that it may be easy to overlook—or miss—the fact that some young clients may be struggling with issues other than, or in addition to, gender dysphoria. With many of these children and teens, there’s no doubt about their “persistence, insistence, and consistence.” But what about the more ambiguous cases? In this workshop, through case presentation and group discussion, you’ll explore how to:

  • Identify the signs of complicated cases at an early stage, especially when parents are anxiously driving the referral
  • Differentiate gender dysphoria cases that may be temporary from those that have deeper roots, and understand when it’s appropriate to recommend medical intervention and when it’s more prudent to wait
  • Recognize warning signs, such as the presence of self-harming behaviors or impulse control problems, that indicate other issues when a child is struggling with gender identity

Note: This workshop fulfills many state board requirements for training in cultural competency.

Margaret Nichols, PhD, has been a licensed psychologist and AASECT certified sex therapy supervisor working in the LGBTQ community for 35 years. She founded the New Jersey Hyacinth AIDS Foundation and is the founder and president of the Institute for Personal Growth.

Laura Jacobs, LCSW-R, is a transgender and genderqueer-identified psychotherapist, activist, speaker, and author, who serves as chair of the board for the Callen-Lorde Community Health Center in New York.

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