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Welcome to the page for parents and carers on the Young Pride in Herts website. Here you can find lots of really useful information that will help you support your young LGBTQ person.

The three websites below provide a wealth of information on a range of LGBTQ topics, such as health and supporting your young person when they are coming out, so are a good place to start.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Young people from the Who not What LGBTQ group have also answered a number of frequently asked questions that they hear from parents below, including further useful links, but please email us at youngprideinherts@hertfordshire.gov.uk if you have any other questions.

 

Where can my young person get support?

YC Hertfordshire currently runs 18 support groups for young people in Hertfordshire aged 13-17 and 18-24. These are run by qualified and experienced youth workers and provide a safe space for LGBTQ young people to meet others and to explore their sexuality or gender identity. More info can be found here:

Is there any support for parents of LGBTQ young people?

Yes! There are several national organisations which offer support for parents. This support may be over the phone, online or through parent meet ups. Follow these links for more info:

Is it just a phase?

For the majority of young people it is not a phase. Coming out to friends and family can be a daunting process and supporting them is important. Even if it is a phase, don’t delegitimise it, self-discovery is an important part of growing for all young people.


My initial reaction wasn’t great, what can I do now?

Apologise, listen to your child, talk through things, even if you don’t understand let your child know that it is fine and try to educate yourself further. You might wish to read about other people’s coming out stories and what it meant for them to come out, and how their family’s reaction has affected them in both positive and negative ways:

When is it ok to share and to tell other people like other members of the family?

It is only ever ok to tell others when your child tells you that they are ok for you to share. There may be certain people that they do not want to share this with and you should be respectful of this. Some young people may want your support in telling other members of the family (such as grandparents) and would appreciate help with answering any questions that they might have. They may need some extra help in managing un-supportive family members. Your child’s happiness should come first even if you or they don’t agree with their sexuality or gender identity.

 

What can schools do to support my child?

The Equality Act 2010 protects students from discrimination and harassment based on protected characteristics, these include: disability; ethnicity and race; gender (sex); gender identity and reassignment; pregnancy, maternity and breast feeding; religion and belief; sexual orientation; age (staff only); marriage and civil partnership (staff only).

Schools will also have an anti-bullying policy which will include the schools response to all types of bullying including homophobic/transphobic bullying. If you are worried or concerned about your child you should contact their head of year or head teacher.

Some useful guidance documents for schools:

If your child would like to speak to someone independently if there is something they are worried about, they can call Childline or chat online with a counsellor.

How shall I approach talking about safe sex with my child?

Safe sex is an important conversation to have with your child at a time and an age that is appropriate. Coming out as LGBTQ should not change this. STIs can affect everyone regardless of gender identity or sexuality. Young people should still use condoms even if they are in a same-sex relationship.

More information about young people’s sexual health can be found here

More information about HIV can be found here

Should I be worried about what my child is doing online?

Like with everything, there are dangers in the online community. There is a large LGBTQ presence online, much of it is very supportive and can be a positive way for your child to understand their sexuality or gender identity. There are lots of YouTubers and bloggers who share their experiences and what support has worked for them. There are also several dating apps for those who are LGBTQ although you need to be 18+ to join.


Can I still have grandchildren?

Yes! But this is a decision for your child to make without pressure from family members.

How does my child’s sexuality or gender identity fit with our faith/religion?

Faith and religion can be an extremely important part of your child’s identity. The common assumption that someone cannot be LGBTQ and have faith and religion can be emotionally harmful. Coming out to a faith group can be very overwhelming and daunting. Within your place of worship there may be a religious leader or pastoral member of staff that your child can speak to.





Young Pride in Herts offers support, information and advice to the young LGBTQ community in Hertfordshire.

If you need support, want to get involved in changing services in the county or are a friend/parent or carer who needs advice, please contact us through our contact page.