In the province of BC, there has been a significant increase in the number of children, youth and families seeking services from psychologists due to gender identity concerns. In clinical practice, we have observed that children are presenting for services related to gender dysphoria at increasingly younger ages. Many parents and families report feeling overwhelmed and unsure about the best ways to support their children.
Participants in this session will learn about the existing misconceptions and biases about children and youth with gender dysphoria. This presentation will also share strategies that schools and families can use to support children and youth with gender identity concerns. To illustrate the potential services available for children and youth, we will share the current model of services used at a local community clinic. Specifically, we will highlight our tiered model of services for providing comprehensive support for children and families, including conducting diagnostic assessments for gender dysphoria, and offering supportive clinical processing groups for children, youth, and parents.
Wallace Wong is registered psychologist in both California and British Columbia. He has been working with the LGBT population since 1996. While he continued to work with the LGBT population, he has also worked with children and youth who present with different sexual behavioural issues/ juvenile sex offenders for more than16 years. He is currently working for the Ministry of Children and Family Development at the Adolescent and Children Sexual Health Program (ACSH), and the Gender Health Program. Dr. Wong also maintains his private practice working mainly with children and youth with different sexual health related concerns. He has made numerous trainings and workshops both locally and internationally related to this population.
Dr. Wong has done research for the transgender population for numbers of years, and they can be found in different professional journals. Dr. Wong is also an author and published 2 transgender children book called, When Kathy is Keith, It’s Gay and It’s Okay, and My Positive Uncle.
Nathalie Sagar (she/her) is a second year doctoral student in the School and Applied Child Psychology program at the University of British Columbia. She is working as a doctoral practicum student with Dr. Wallace Wong at Child and Youth Mental Health where she will gain experience working with both the Gender Health Program and Adolescent Sexual Health Program. Outside of this practicum Nathalie's research interests include examining the experiences of children with a bipolar parent, in hopes of contributing to a literature base that can improve the way that we communicate with children about hereditary mental illnesses.