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Gender identity and expression

Learn about how Dominion Hospital's mental health programs can help and how we can connect you to gender-affirming resources in our community. We are dedicated to supporting you no matter your gender identity or gender expression.

Gender identity and gender expression

Information for families

At Dominion Hospital patients have the right to competent, considerate, and respectful care in a safe setting that fosters their comfort and dignity, regardless of gender identity or gender expression.

Our protocol

  • Upon admission, if a patient volunteers that he or she is transgender, staff will ask if the patient would like to have his or her preferred name or pronouns recorded in the medical record. If the patient indicates that this information should be recorded, staff should ask if the patient prefers male or female pronouns.
  • Transgender patients will be addressed and referred to on the basis of their self-identified gender, using their preferred pronoun and name, regardless of the patient’s appearance, surgical history, legal name, or sex assigned at birth. If the patient’s family members suggest that the patient is of a gender different from that which the patient self-identifies, the patient’s view should be honored.
  • If a private room is available, it should be made available to a transgender patient. The assignment should be explained to the patient for the purpose of ensuring the patient’s privacy, safety, and comfort.

Tips for families

  • Engage with your family member - Ask questions, listen, empathize, share, and just be there for them.
  • Go back to school - Get the facts about sexual orientation and gender identity. Learn new and correct language and terminology to communicate effectively.
  • Get to know the community - What resources are available? Is there an alliance at school? A community center nearby?
  • Explore the Internet - There is a growing amount of excellent information that connects people with supports and materials. For a diverse selection of links to a variety of sites, visit Ithaca College’s Center for LGBT Education, Outreach, and Services.
  • Find out where your local Parents, Families, & Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) meets - Finding another person you can trust to share your experience with is invaluable.
  • Don’t make it all there is - Just because someone has come out as LGBT does not mean that their whole world revolves around sexual orientation or gender identity. It will be a big part, but it is vital do encourage and engage in other aspects of life such as school, work, sports, hobbies, friends, etc.
  • Ask your family member before you “come out” to others on their behalf - Be respectful of what they want. Don’t betray trust!
  • Praise your family member for involving you in discussions - Encourage them to keep you “in the know.” If they are sharing personal information, you must be doing something right! You are askable. You’re sending our consistent verbal and non-verbal cues that say, “Yes, I’ll listen. Please talk to me.”
  • Find out what kind of support, services, and education are in place at your child’s school - Do they have an anti-discrimination policy? Is there a LGBT support group?
  • Educate yourself on local, state, and national laws and policies regarding LGBT people - Consider educating yourself and finding out if you are interested in becoming an advocate yourself.
*Adapted from Advocates For Youth

Online resources for youth and parents

Local support groups and resources

Menninger Clinic


ROSMY Peer Support Groups/Resource Referrals/Trainings If you or someone you know is an LGBTQ youth, you can call the 24/7 YSL and ask a trained operator for support, information and referrals. The Youth Support Line number is toll free at (888) 644-4390.