Transgender is a broad term that can be used to describe people whose gender identity is different from the gender they were thought to be when they were born. “Trans” is often used as shorthand for transgender.

To treat a transgender person with respect, you treat them according to their gender identity, not their sex at birth. So, someone who lives as a woman today is called a transgender woman and should be referred to as “she” and “her.” A transgender man lives as a man today and should be referred to as “he” and “him.” (source: National Center for Transgender Equality)

General Resources:

Robyn and other members of Harvard University's Trans Task Force celebrating the addition of gender identity to the University's nondiscrimination policy at the Harvard Gay & Lesbian Caucus Dinner, June 2006.
Robyn and other members of Harvard University’s Trans Task Force
celebrating the addition of gender identity to the University’s nondiscrimination policy at the Harvard Gay & Lesbian Caucus Dinner, June 2006.

National Center for Transgender Equality: social justice organization for advancing the equality of transgender people through advocacy, collaboration, empowerment. They have an excellent publication entitled “Opening the door to the inclusion of transgender people: the nine keys to making lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender organizations fully transgender-inclusive,” by Lisa Mottet and Justin Tannis.

Trans Youth Family Allies: Empowers children and families by partnering with educators, service providers and communities, to develop supportive environments in which gender may be expressed and respected.

Gender Spectrum Family. Education and support, to create a gender sensitive and inclusive environment for all children and teens.

Gender Confirmation Center: A California-based top surgery specialist and resource page.

New York Association for Gender Rights Advocacy (NYAGRA): Advocates for freedom of gender identity and expression for all.

Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund: Committed to ending discrimination based upon gender identity and expression and to achieving equality for transgender people through public education, test-case litigation, direct legal services, community organizing and public policy efforts.

Androgyne Online

FTM International


International Foundation for Gender Education

Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC): Lobbying, education, activism. And they have comprehensive on-line listing of Massachusetts transgender resources.

My Princess Boy by Cheryl Kilodavis. “My Princess Boy is a book about acceptance. It is based on my son Dyson, a self titled Princess Boy.  The book tells the story of a 4-year-old boy who happily expresses his authentic self by enjoying “traditionally girl” things like jewelry and anything sparkly or pink.  It is also the story of my struggle with the challenge of supporting him when he dresses up, and the solid unconditional support and love he received from his older brother, Dkobe, and his father, my husband Dean.  My hope is our story will help others to start and continue a dialogue about unconditional friendship and teach children — and adults — how to accept and support children for who they are and how they wish to look.”

PFLAG Transgender Network (TNET) archived discussions of gender theory & identity. Open to people of all gender identities.

Transgender Law Center: a California-focused civil rights organization advocating for transgender communities.

California Trans Can Work : The CTWP Mission is to promote California as a “truly transgender positive workplace” and create a model for the remainder of the country.

Videos | Books | Media 

List of films focusing on trans and gender diverse people from

Two Spirits | A Map of Gender-Diverse Cultures | Independent Lens | PBS. Interactive map with descriptions of how gender is understood/constructed in various locations throughout the world.

This American Life On Transgender Children: NPR show from February 13, 2009 profiling two eight-year-old transgender children. Note: The segment starts about 29 minutes into the show.

Boy I Am: About FTM trans experience.

Cruel & Unusual: About trans women in prison.

Screaming Queens: The Riot at Compton’s Cafeteria: About 1966 pre-Stonewall riot in San Francisco.

Transgender Basics: Produced by the Gender Identity Project and Media Center. 20 minute video that introduces us to several transgender invididuals and outlines basic concepts, such as the difference between sex, gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation.

Toilet Training: Addresses the persistent discrimination, harassment, and violence that people who transgress gender norms face in gender segregated bathrooms.

Transsexual Menace: Interviews with transsexuals.

The Transgender Child: A Handbook for Families and Professionals, by Stephanie Brill and Rachel Pepper. (book – good resource for parents and educators)

Articles and Resources Available Online

Gender Neutral Pronouns (quick reference guide)

Transgender Travelers: Information from the TSA for transgender travelers going through airport security.

When Steve Becomes Stephanie, Harvard Business Review Case Study

Trans 101, by T-Vox

What transgender people need to know about TSA’s procedures“(PDF). From the National Center for Transgender Equality

Kids of Trans Resource Guide.Video and PDF produced by COLAGE (organization for people with a LGBT or Q parent)


In Boston: BAGLY has weekly meetings for transgender youth (under 23) on Friday nights at 5pm. They can be contacted at 1-800-42-BAGLY or check out their website.