Transgender and Non-Binary Children: Books to Help Adults Understand

Produced by the HRC Foundation

Becoming Nicole: The Transformation of an American Family. Amy Ellis Nutt. 2015. Captures the inspiring true story of identical twins, one of whom is transgender, and a family’s journey to acceptance.

The Bold World: A Memoir of Family and Transformation. Jodie Patterson. 2019. Witness an African American mother reshaping her attitudes and beliefs, as well as those of her community, to meet the needs of her transgender son and opening the minds of everyone in her family. An intimate portrait and an exquisite study in identity, courage, and love.

The Gender Creative Child: Pathways for Nurturing and Supporting Children Who Live Outside Gender Boxes. Diane Ehrensaft and Norman Spack. 2016. A comprehensive resource that explains the interconnected effects of biology, nurture, and culture to explore why gender can be fluid, rather than binary. A guide through the rapidly changing cultural, medical, and legal landscape of gender and identity.

Nonbinary: Memoirs of Gender and Identity. Micah Rajunov and Scott Duane (Editors) 2019. First-person narratives show us a world where gender exists along a spectrum, a web, a multidimensional space. Nuanced storytellers break away from mainstream portrayals of gender diversity, cutting across lines of age, race, ethnicity, ability, class, religion, family, and relationships.

A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns. Archie Bongiovanni. 2018. (Teen – Adult) A fun comic guide that explains what pronouns are, why they matter, and how to use them. They also include what to do if you make a mistake. For adults and teens. Also see A Quick & Easy Guide to Queer & Trans Identities.

Raising My Rainbow: Adventures in Raising a Fabulous, Gender Creative Son. Lori Duron. 2014. A frank, heartfelt, and brutally funny account of her and her family's adventures of distress and happiness raising a gender-creative son. Whereas her older son, Chase, is a Lego-loving, sports-playing boy's boy, her younger son, C.J., would much rather twirl around in a pink sparkly tutu. Based on Duron’s popular blog.

Raising Ryland: Our Story of Parenting a Transgender Child with No Strings Attached. Hillary Whittington. 2016. Hilary first told Ryland’s story in a short video for the teachers in his new school as he began kindergarten. The video soon went viral. In this moving account, you are now taken on the path of his parents as they transform their understanding of gender and learn take the many steps needed to support the life of their child.

Sissy: A Coming-of-Gender Story. Jacob Tobia. 2019. A memoir about what it's like to grow up not sure if you're (a) a boy, (b) a girl, (c) something in between, or (d) all of the above. Written with the fierce honesty, wildly irreverent humor, and wrenching vulnerability that has made them a media sensation.

Supporting Transgender and Gender Creative Youth: Schools, Families, and Communities in Action. Elizabeth Meyer and Annie Pullen Sansfaçon (Editors) 2014. Specifically addresses issues and challenges in education, social work, medicine, and counseling as well as recommendations that are relevant for parents, families, practitioners, and educators alike.

The Trans Generation: How Trans Kids (and Their Parents) are Creating a Gender Revolution. Ann Travers. 2019. Based on interviews with transgender kids, ranging in age from 4 to 20, and their parents, and over five years of research in the US and Canada, The Trans Generation offers a rare look into what it is like to grow up as a trans child.

The Transgender Child: A Handbook for Families and Professionals. Stephanie A. Brill & Rachel Pepper. 2008.  A comprehensive guidebook on gender variance from birth through college. What will happen when your preschool son insists on wearing a dress to school? Is this ever just a phase? How can parents advocate for their children in elementary schools? What are the current laws? What do doctors and therapists recommend?

The Transgender Teen. Stephanie A. Brill and Lisa Kenney. 2016. A comprehensive guidebook that explores the unique challenges that thousands of families face every day raising a teenager who may be transgender, non-binary or gender-fluid. Covers topics relating to physical and emotional development, social and school pressures, medical considerations, and family communications.

Transgender Children and Youth: Cultivating Pride and Joy with Families in Transition. Elijah C. Nealy. 2017. A comprehensive guide to the medical, emotional, and social issues of transgender kids. It covers topics from family life to school and mental health issues, as well as the physical, social, and emotional aspects of transition.

What We Will Become: A Mother, a Son, and a Journey of Transformation. Mimi Lemay. 2019. A mother’s memoir of her transgender child’s odyssey, and her journey outside the boundaries of the faith and culture that shaped her. A powerful testament to how painful events from the past can be redeemed to give us hope for the future.

The Human Rights Campaign reports on news, events and resources of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation that are of interest to the general public and further our common mission to support the LGBTQ+ community.