Trans Lifeline Library:

Family Safety:

Ensuring Privacy and Appropriate Disclosure

For Parents of Trans Youth

Family Safety


Ensuring Privacy and Appropriate Disclosure


Once your child’s gender identity has been shared with someone, it can’t be unshared. Their consent for you to share this information is incredibly important–the most basic respect you can give trans people is the right to self-determine how out or visible they want to be.

Your child’s needs and preferences around how out/public they are as a trans person may change and evolve over time, so it’s important to remember to periodically check in with your child about their needs and wants surrounding privacy and disclosure.

It’s possible that your child may want to be more open about their identity than you may initially be comfortable with–for your child, they’ve had time to integrate this information, and learned to take pride in it. Discussing with your child where the other family members are in terms of readiness to go public is important. If the information is still brand new to you, it’s reasonable to ask for a little bit of time to prepare for people’s reactions/share the news privately first. Agreeing on and setting a date to go public can be a way of ensuring that your child knows you’re not just putting it off because there’s a shame element or concerns about “appearances.”


Gender Spectrum–Privacy and Safety

Gender Spectrum–Communicating with Family and Friends

Trans Youth Equality–Disclosure

Trans Equality–Going Public: Is Public Advocacy Right For You and Your Family? (PDF)

Back to Parents of  Trans Youth

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