Guest Blogger Deanna Martin, Senior Specialist, Center for Excellence

Beech Acres Parenting Center is saddened and angered to hear of recent reports of lawmakers proposing bills that limit the rights of people who identify as LGBTQ and aiming to limit both freedoms of speech around sexual orientation and identity and interfering in the medical decisions of children and families. 

We stand in solidarity with our LGBTQ children, families, and youth and support the wellbeing of all families.

We denounce legislation that promotes behaviors that increase risk and decrease the health and wellbeing of the LGBTQ community. 

As we navigate these challenging times together, we invite you to engage in behaviors that help young people thrive. Research from the Family Acceptance Project has shown there are over 50 family accepting behaviors that can reduce risk and promote well-being.  

Here are some behaviors that you can engage in that will support your LGBTQ children and their friends. 

  1. Tell you LGBTQ/gender diverse child that you love them
  2. Support your child’s gender expression
  3. Ask your child if – and how – you can help them tell other people about their LGBTQ identity
  4. Show affection when your child tells you or you learn your child is LGBTQ
  5. Use your child’s chosen name and the pronoun that matches their gender identity
  6. Tell your LGBTQ/gender diverse child that you will be there for them – even if you don’t fully understand them. 
  7. Speak up when others make negative comments about LGBTQ people

The children of parents who engage in these accepting behaviors have children that experience:  

  • Better health
  • Higher self esteem
  • Stronger social support
  • Better family relationships
  • Less likely to be depressed
  • 3 times less likely to think about suicide
  • 3 times less likely to attempt suicide
  • Less likely to have substance abuse problems

Learn more about behaviors that support and hinder the health and well-being of LGBTQ people.