I review the mental health difficulties that transgender and gender diverse children and adolescents may present with, specifically emotional difficulties. Many studies reveal depression scores and parent and self-reported measures of emotional and behavioral problems that are comparable to mental health clinic referred populations. Children and adolescents who feel that they are acknowledged and supported in their gender diverse feelings, e.g. by receiving gender affirming medical treatment or social transitioning, seem more resilient. In contrary, transgender youth who experience rejection and social ostracism seem more vulnerable for developing depressive, anxiety and suicidality symptoms. A specific concern in transgender care is the overrepresentation of autism within transgender youth. The possible link between autism and gender diversity raises diagnostic, treatment and theoretical questions that will be discussed. Results of various studies of the Amsterdam Center of Knowledge on Gender Dysphoria will illustrate the presentation.
19 - 21 Sep 2019
European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology