Queer Theory: Here, Now, and Everywhere working group faculty fellow Tey Meadow was quoted in a recent piece for The Atlantic on new research findings which demonstrate strong self-knowledge and identity sense of young trans children.
The study by Kristina Olson, a psychologist at the University of Washington, tracked the health and well-being of 85 gender-nonconforming participants, ages 3 to 12, showing, in two separate ways, that those who go on to transition do so because they already have a strong sense of their identity.
According to Professor Meadow, parents contribute greatly to developing this strong self-knowledge and identity in young trans children. Parents are the ultimate arbiters of a child’s access to transition, and they make decisions “in a culture that encourages parents to look for every possible alternative to transness,” says Meadow.
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Tey Meadow is Assistant Professor of Sociology at Columbia. She is the author of Trans Kids: Being Gendered in the Twenty-First Century, and the coeditor of Other Please Specify: Queer Methods in Sociology.