Supporting LGBTQ+ young people: Charlie’s story
At Action for Children, we shine a light on young people of all identities – their challenges and triumphs. We thank Charlie* for sharing her story
Growing up for Charlie wasn’t easy. Throughout her childhood, she witnessed drug and alcohol abuse in her home. At one point, she was taken into foster care with her younger siblings.
Charlie came out as a transgender when she was 12 years old. She threw a letter down the stairs to her family to tell them she was in the wrong body.
Eventually she sat down with her parents and explained: “I am who I am, I don’t choose who I am. You have to be who you want to be, otherwise you might not be here at all.
What I said to my mum and dad was, would you rather have a dead son or a happy daughter? This made them realise that this wasn’t a choice. And that I am Charlie.
After leaving home at 16, Charlie is now 17 and living in Edinburgh where she started getting support from Action for Children on finding a job.
Charlie had a difficult childhood, but with Action for Children by her side we want to give her the best start to adulthood.
The support from Action for Children has just helped me come out of my shell as well. I am happy to talk to people and tell them my story and make friends. I never could’ve even done this if it wasn’t for their support.Charlie
We are proud of Action for Children’s culture of inclusion. We want to make sure that children and young people of all identities are protected and supported.
We’ve put together a Gender Identity Guide for practitioners and volunteers to support children and young people with their gender identity.
*This story is anonymous.