letters-to-lgbt-kids
letters-to-lgbt-kids
Letters to lgbt kids
Supportive letters to lgbt+ youth, from a “virtual parent”. My book "Letters to the LGBT+ Community" is available on Amazon! 
2819 posts
letters-to-lgbt-kids · 3 hours ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids, 
Smartphone is just a made-up word. 
If you asked someone in 1830 if you could borrow their smartphone, they would have had no idea what on earth you’re talking about. That’s not even a real word! 
If you asked someone in 1994, they would maybe, after a lot of confusion and guessing, ask back “You mean a… personal communicator?” or “Are you talking about a mobile phone?”. Why would you call that smartphone, that’s not what they are called! (x)
And yet, it would be ridiculous if I told all of you to stop saying smartphone now. If I told you “It’s not historically accurate!” or “But that’s just one of those new fancy terms!”, you’d most likely laugh at me. Come on, you’d say, the way we call things changes and evolves constantly. You can’t insist on us not adapting language to fit our needs! 
It’s the same with lgbt+ terms (including the term “lgbt+” in itself). 
Yes, many terms we use now are relatively “new”. Language evolves. 
Yes, all our labels are “made-up”. We made them up because there was a need for them. What’s wrong with that? Nothing.
“That’s not historically accurate” is a really bad excuse to disrespect someone’s identity. 
With all my love, 
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 17 hours ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids,
I had a conversation with someone who told me "Even though I know deep down that I am trans, I just keep making up other explanations for my feelings. I feel like I could write down a whole list with all the signs I am trans - but on the other hand I can come up with a whole list of these alternative explanations! Am I allowed to identify as trans even if I can think of other explanations?" and I figured some of you may have similar questions, so I wanted to share with you what I told them:
You are allowed to call yourself trans even if you can "explain away" your feelings in other ways.
Sure, this could also be low self-confidence and that could just be confusion and that other thing could be trauma and the next one could be... But if you need to rake your brain for other possible explanations than "I am trans", if you feel the need to make those lists and you think about being trans so much, don’t you think that "I am trans" may simply be the best explanation?
It's easy to convince yourself that spending hours and energy on making up all those alternatives to you being trans must be a sign that you are not actually trans ("If it was real, I wouldn't be able to come up with other explanations"). In my experience, the opposite of that is true: We often don't see the forest for the trees. You spend all this time staring at the "trees" (your feelings) trying to come up with individual explanation for every single one - but the pure fact that there are even that many trees to stare at is already a pretty big giveaway that you are in the forest.
Of course I can’t (and don’t want to) decide your label for you. But if you deep down know you are trans and just feel like you can’t give yourself permission to use that term, it may be helpful to hear this: I believe you. You are trans. You can trust yourself.
With all my love,
Your Tumblr Dad
P.S: "Huh, didn't you post something similar to this before?". Yes, I did. And I still get aggressive messages and threats because of it. Transphobes and "feminists" really had a field day with the original post and purposefully twisted the message into me pushing the label trans on people who are not. So, I deleted the original and replace it with this longer version (the difference is that I now mention that real-life conversation where the inspiration for the post came from - hopefully this will clear up any confusion regarding my intentions).
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My dear lgbt+ kids, 
A personal anecdote is just a story - not a general fact. 
“I know a girl who thought she was lesbian and now she has a husband and three kids!” tells us something about this one girl and her life (assuming it’s a true story) but what does it tell us about lesbian girls in general? Nothing. It’s not some kind of scientific fact that proves something - it’s just one story about one person. 
It’s important to keep that difference in mind. These a-friend-of-my-sister-has-a-cousin-who-is-gay kind of stories are at best a interesting fact about a stranger and at worst a fabricated rumor used as an excuse to be homophobic. 
But they never prove anything and especially do not “prove” that your identity is fake or that you’re going through a phase. 
With all my love, 
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 2 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids, 
If you have boobs, being masculine or androgynous doesn’t necessarily need to include hating and/or hiding your boobs. 
Your chest doesn’t need to look flat for you to be allowed to think of yourself as masculine or androgynous. Your upper body doesn’t need to look like that of a cis guy - and you don’t even need to WANT to look like that. 
No matter if you are a butch lesbian or a nonbinary person or a trans guy or any other label - you can call yourself masculine or androgynous AND have a larger chest. You can wear clothes that don’t hide that fact. Heck, you are even allowed to like it and want to show it off. It’s your body, you make the rules! 
The idea “If people can tell that you have boobs, you present as feminine” is crap. Nobody gets to decide that you need to think of yourself as feminine, just because you don’t want to make your chest look flat. 
With all my love, 
Your Tumblr Dad  
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 2 days ago
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(CW: Sarcasm) My dear lgbt+ kids,
I am always amazed at my supernatural powers as a trans person on the internet.
I just need to type something like „It’s okay to be trans“ and everyone who reads those words immediately turns trans! There are millions - no, trillions - of literal infants who read this blog (my powers also enable newborns to navigate tumblr) and I just turn all of them trans. Mind you, none of them have ever even thought about being trans before. I’m just that freaking powerful.
Wait, you do not believe that? That’s not how it works? But I’ve been so reliably informed about my powers! By… oh, yeah, right, by people who have weird stuff about being „critical“ or „radical“ in their blog bios. These are not code words for scientists who want to study my apparent superpowers? Oh, they are just transphobes. Now that’s a lot less exciting.
Weird attempts of humor aside: The scary idea „trans positivity turns people trans“ doesn’t work without the underlying notion that being trans is bad. I’m not worried about my content „turning“ people. In reality I just ain’t that freaking powerful.
If someone reads my blog and thinks „Hey, I am trans“, they are not a cis person who forcefully got turned trans. They are either a trans person who finally found the right words to describe how they feel, or possibly their first realization is not their final destination and the label trans will just be one step on their journey. Either way, there is no external power or force - just self-discovery and that’s a beautiful thing! Why should I be scared of that?
If you are trans, let me remind you that you ain’t that freaking powerful, either. You can visibly exist on the internet, you can take up space, you can talk about your experiences, you can share love and support for your trans siblings - none of that is you irresponsibly „turning“ others. You are not evil for living your truth.
With all my love,
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 3 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids,
Some asexual and/or aromantic people are genuinely surprised when they learn about sexual/romantic attraction - and that’s okay!
It may be difficult for them to imagine that other people really feel that (or what “that” is even supposed to feel like).
Some are confused when they realize that having a crush or wanting to sleep with someone is a actual thing that happens to real people and not just something out of a movie or an exaggeration.
It makes sense: It’s not easy to imagine a situation you’ve never been in.
If that’s you, please do not feel guilty about it. You’re allowed to feel that confusion. It doesn’t mean you’re stupid or immature.
It certainly does not mean you’re a prude who is judging other people for their love life. There’s a big difference between “I never felt that and am confused by it” and “I think it’s wrong to feel that way”.    
Your confusion does not make you a bad person!
With all my love,
Your Tumblr Dad 
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 3 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids, 
Bi means two and so it’s fairly easy to imagine what “bigender” must mean: two genders! 
But wait - two at the same time or switching between two? And are those two always “man + woman” or could it be something else? Is it exactly two or is this a “more than one” thing? 
When you google “bigender”, you find answers to all that - and they are contradicting. Different websites offer different explanations. Which one is the right one?
Let’s turn that question around: Which person is right about their own gender identity? Everyone, of course! Someone who says “I am a man and a woman at the same time, all the time” is right about that. Someone who says “Sometimes I am a woman, sometimes I am genderless” is right about that. Someone who says “I am more than one gender. I can’t give you a list of them or name them - I am just me and I don’t fit in one single box” is also right about that. Everyone is the expert on their own identity. 
Your definition is the right definition for you - not necessarily the right one for everyone else but the perfect one for you! 
With all my love, 
Your Tumblr Dad 
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 3 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids,
Do you ever read those "20 people share what they regret about their wedding day" articles? I find them fascinating.
Occasionally there is something like "I wish I married another person" or "I hate two of my bridesmaids now" - but the majority of the answers can be summarized like this: "I wish I did it the fun way instead of trying to do it the `right´ way."
They wanted to wear a black dress. They wanted to get married in the local botanical garden. They wanted a movie-themed wedding. They wanted to elope. They wanted their dog to walk them down the aisle. So many unique, fun, personal ideas... but they felt pressured to do things the traditional way.
There may be someone reading this who is actually planning their wedding right now (Congratulations! I'm excited for you!) but I guess it's safe to say that most of you are not. So, why do I tell you this?
Because I think it's a good life lesson in general. You don't need to live life the "right" way. It's much better to focus on living the way that feels authentically you than to do it the right way.
It's true for gender and relationship and sexuality stuff, too: Your choices don't need to make sense to others, they just need to make you happy!
With all my love,
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 4 days ago
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(TW: Abuse mention) 
My dear lgbt+ kids, 
Someone can be “nice” and still be abusive. 
It’s a dangerous myth that abusers are not nice people. I know that this may sound confusing, so let me use an example: 
A person could work as a doctor, saving people’s lives. They might also regularly volunteer in the local animal shelter, give generous tips whenever they dine out and help old people cross the street safely - and then go home and abuse their partner.
Would being “nice” to others somehow justify or excuse abusive actions? No, certainly not. The abuse their partner has to go through isn’t any less painful, damaging, real than it would be if the abuser was a person with a reputation of being mean and rude - but it would most likely be “hard to believe” or “likely just made up” in the eyes of their neighbors. 
 Abuse can happen in all kinds of relationships involving people of any gender. 
A person can be so nice, can give you gifts and flowers and say “I love you” a million times - and still be abusive.
If you’ve been abused by a “nice” person, please know that I believe you. It was wrong what they did, it was real abuse. They don’t get a free pass to hurt you by being nice to others or being nice to you at other times. 
With all my love, 
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 4 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids,
The one thing all lesbians have in common is that they are attracted to women.
"All lesbians want...", "All lesbians think...", "If you are a lesbian, you have never...", "A real lesbian would never...", "Lesbians hate..." - Nope! We can stop right there. Not true.
If you see such statements and don't relate to them, that's normal. Everybody/Nobody or Always/Never Statements always exclude some people. It's not a sign you are not a real lesbian - just a sign that the statement is overgeneralized!
Just like any other group of human beings, lesbians come with so many different life experiences, feelings, opinions, personalities and viewpoints. Two can be complete opposites of each other and not agree on anything whatsoever, and they are still both lesbian.
With all my love,
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 5 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids,
Are you reading this letter in the bathroom because that’s the only place in your home where you have enough privacy to look up lgbt+ content?
If so, here’s a hug for you! Don’t worry, this won’t turn into a long speech on how much that situation sucks - you are the one living it, you already know that. This is just a little "Hey, I see you. I care about you."
I have been there. So many of us have been there. Maybe it's some comfort to know that you share this experience with so many others - and that many of us got out of it. It may still be a few years away until you can get your own place or can move in with more supportive people. But you won't be hiding in that bathroom forever. And it's worth waiting for that future.
With all my love,
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 6 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids,
Just a quick note: Today I decided to turn off the direct messaging feature on this blog - which means there will be zero ways to contact me now except for publicly adding a comment or tags to my posts.
The reasons for that are simple:
- I am overwhelmed by the number of messages I receive. This is also why the "Ask me anything" and "Submit" features of this blog have been turned off for at least 3 years now. I feel guilty when I see that little "99+ new messages" staring at me every time I log in because I know I will leave at least 97 of them unanswered. I know this may sound mean but please remember that this is not a paid full-time job. I simply don't have the time or energy to read all of them, let alone answer all of them.
- Most of those messages were genuine questions or nice words (thankyou so much! They still mean a lot to me). But after over 7 years of running this blog, I have also seen more insults, baseless accusations, transphobic rants, rape threats and death threats than any person should ever have to deal with. Don't get me wrong, these were few and far between the positive, supportive and wonderful messages. But I am human. And I am tired.
I will continue to read through my notes regularly. So, if you want to request a topic or just tell me something, please feel encouraged to add it to my posts! I may not answer directly but I do appericate your comments and will keep your requests in mind.
With all my love,
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 7 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids,
Agender seems to be one of those terms that is often only talked about in terms of definitions. If I see it mentioned at all, it's in discussions like "Do agender people not have a gender or do they have a neutral gender?" or "Does "agender" mean the same as "genderneutral", "genderblank" or "genderless"?".
So, will I answer these questions in this post? Nope. I can't possibly answer them - I am not agender and even if I was, I could only tell you what felt right for me. I don't think that there are any right or wrong answers here, there are only personal answers. Nobody but you can decide who you are and which words describe you the best.
But maybe even more importantly: Agender people are more than definitions. You are not just some words, you are a human being. We can discect and analyze and discuss language (and sometimes it's very important to do so) but the danger with that is that we lose sight of the people behind those words. We can not discect your experiences, your thoughts, your feelings - and they matter much more than some words.
Just take this letter as a little reminder: If you say you are agender, well, then congratulations, you are agender! You are the ultimate expert on that. That label fits you perfectly and I'm so glad you found it. Keep on being your awesome agender self!
With all my love,
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 7 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids, 
December can be a difficult month. 
Everyone is excited for something - a holiday they celebrate, snow, days with no school/work, plans for the new year. So many things to look forward for and feel joyful about. But maybe you don’t feel joyful right now. 
Maybe you’re going through a hard time. Maybe you feel worried or sad or angry or empty. It can be so difficult to accept that this is not “the happiest time of the year” when seemingly everyone else is so happy. 
But it’s okay not to be in a “winter is so wonderful” mood. Your feelings are okay. You don’t need to feel guilty or ashamed. 
You’re allowed to feel. 
With all my love, 
Your Tumblr Dad 
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 8 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids,
Here is a hug for the ones who feel like they need to parent their parents.
You take on the role of the mature, responsible adult in the family while the actual adults take on the role of the kids who need your supervision and protection. You are the one who makes sure that they stay out of trouble. You are the one who tries to solve their problems and you have to clean up the messy situations they regularly get themselves into. If you have siblings, you are their parent as well. You are the only one who makes sure everyone is fed, clean, safe (or at least still alive) at the end of the day.
That's a heavy burden to carry. You are basically a working single parent. You are expected to juggle with multiple fragile glass balls, with your "work responsibilities" (school, homework and all the usual stress factors that come with being a teenager) and your "parent responsibilities" (parenting your parents and siblings) and you can't risk dropping any of those balls. So what do you drop to keep everything from crashing down?
The "My own wants and needs" ball - and that can really complicate the journey of self-discovery. To survive in a role-reversed family, you need to internalize the idea that you always come last. It only matters that they are okay. How are you supposed to suddenly switch from "I don't matter" to "My feelings are important and I deserve to explore them?"? You may struggle with feeling guilty or selfish for wanting to explore your sexuality and/or gender identity. You may feel like you betray your parents by even having your own identity at all and no longer just thinking of yourself as their protector.
But you are not selfish. You are just a kid who was forced to grow up way too fast. You were never meant to be their protector. No matter if they were unable to fulfill that role or if they just refused to fulfill that role: they were meant to protect you. You are not failing or betraying them in any way, you are just (maybe for the first time in your life) actually being young. Actually learning about yourself and your needs and what feels good for you. And that can be scary!
That's okay, you are allowed to be scared. You always had to be the mature one, you always had to have all the answers. Of course it's a unfamilar feeling to find yourself in the role of the young one who has questions. Be kind and patient with yourself.
With all my love,
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 9 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids, 
I don’t care if you’ve always known. I don’t care if you identified as straight until recently. I don’t care if your orientation or identity changed over time. I don’t care if you’re still questioning. I don’t care if you use a umbrella term. 
Do you know what i care about? About you. I care how you feel right now. And i promise, your feelings right now are valid and real and okay. 
With all my love,
Your Tumblr Dad
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letters-to-lgbt-kids · 10 days ago
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My dear lgbt+ kids, 
Just a quick reminder that trans people who will never take hormones - no matter if they can’t do so due to health-related, financial, legal or any other reasons or because they don’t want to do so - are 100% trans and 100% valid. 
With all my love, 
Your Tumblr Dad
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