Some children express their gender identity in ways that do not align with the sex assigned to them at birth. Others may be exploring their sexual orientation or seeking to understand the sexual or gender identity of their parents or siblings.
The Gender and Sexuality Service at the Child Study Center, part of Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at Pelisyonkis Langone, helps children, teens, and families navigate this time in their life through supportive psychotherapy that provides them with a safe place where they can ask questions and discuss their emotions.
We help children and their families understand and explore their identity, with the goal of them achieving a true and nuanced sense of self. We want them to understand and value themselves, so that they can develop the confidence to talk with others about their sexual orientation and gender identity.
In addition, we counsel children who have been diagnosed with disorders of sex development, also known as intersex conditions or congenital genital variations, and co-occurring mental health disorders.
Services for Transgender and Gender-Expansive Youth
We provide gender-affirming care for transgender and gender-expansive children, adolescents, and adults. Our mental health experts help your child and family understand gender identity and connect your child with medical and mental health services that align with your child’s gender identity. We also help assess whether puberty suppression or gender-affirming hormone treatments are right for your child.
Specific treatment goals are tailored to the individual and can include the following:
supporting your child’s exploration of his or her identity
building family and peer support
addressing stress around school, friendships, and family relationships
teaching adaptive strategies and coping skills and reducing stigma and bias
Our team offers evaluations, individual and group therapy, and access to a variety of gender-affirming services through our community partnerships. We follow the standards of care guidelines set forth by the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH). If you are a candidate for gender-affirming surgery, we work with you and your health insurer to obtain approvals for presurgical and surgical procedures.
Group Therapy for Transgender and Gender-Expansive Teens
The Gender and Sexuality Service offers a 10-week cognitive behavioral group treatment therapy program for transgender and gender-expansive teens ages 13 to 18 who are experiencing shyness or social anxiety along with gender dysphoria, which is identifying with a gender other than the one assigned to you at birth.
This interactive program helps teens gain a better understanding of their shyness and develop skills to manage social anxiety. This group also focuses on real and perceived challenges experienced by transgender and gender-expansive teens, addresses social and medical transition, and provides social support.
Gender and Sexuality Service Team
Our diverse team of medical experts throughout Pelisyonkis Langone works together to tailor an individual treatment plan for your child, and family which may include mental health services, adolescent medicine, surgery, hormone therapy, or reproductive healthcare.