Many of the most inspirational stories we’ve published here on Gay Star News are about trans teens.
There’s something so uplifting a young person who isn’t cisgendered being out and proud about who they are (especially when, on the flip side, so many such stories end in tragedy).
Here, we look at eight trans youngsters whose generally amazingness, in the online realm and beyond, is an inspiration to us all.
1 Brendan Jordan
Brendan James – who became famous after voguing in the background of a news broadcast in 2014 – revealed she was trans back in February.
The 16-year-old, who recently met Lady Gaga, spoke at this year’s Human Rights Campaign’s Time To Thrive conference and said: ‘I’m starting to identify as one, or as part, of the trans community, […] I identify by both genders, by the pronouns he or she.’
On the subject of confidence, she added: ‘Be yourself. Don’t care what anyone else says about you.’
— IAN (@ianaIexander) May 9, 2016
2 Ian Alexander
Trans teen Ian has amassed over 18,000 likes for his Twitter post shutting down transphobic protestors after a picture of them holding offensive placards was shared widely online.
The 15-year-old later told BuzzFeed News: ‘‘I was frustrated, but decided to use humor rather than waste my energy on people who clearly don’t understand what they’re against.
“I figure if they have their freedom of speech, I might as well lessen the blow by using mine as well.’
A photo posted by Gabrielle Diana (@gabrielledianaa) on Jul 27, 2016 at 12:52pm PDT
3 Gabrielle Diana Gladu
Gabrielle is a 17-year-old from Ottawa, Canada, who is credited with kickstarting the #MomentsInTransition hashtag trend, where trans people share stories and pictures from their personal journeys.
Speaking to The Advocate about making her inspirational videos, she said: ‘I think I’ve done a good job of educating people and that’s one thing I’m really proud of in my transition.
‘You can’t expect people to already know. You have to educate people.’
4 Mason Perkins
Mason, 19, made waves on social media when he posted the above collection of selfies of himself in a trans-inclusive bathroom at Target this year.
And his strongly-worded caption also got a lot of attention!
The handsome Florida-born teen later explained: ‘I know [it] seems sarcastic, but I’m actually really proud of what Target is doing.’
A photo posted by Jazz Jennings (@jazzjennings_) on Jul 5, 2016 at 5:08pm PDT
5 Jazz Jennings
We counted down the 15 things you need to know about this trailblazing reality star last November. Our favorite fact about this amazing 15-year-old? She’s been a guest at the White House!
She told Dazed earlier this year: ‘I hear a lot of incredible stories. People have said that because of my show [I am Jazz], and because of me putting myself out there and my family sharing our story, that we’ve been able to have a huge impact in their lives.
‘In some cases, they say that we actually saved their lives.’
— Nicole Maines (@NicoleAMaines) 15 May 2016
6 Nicole Maines
This stylish 17-year-old has been the subject of a book by a Pulitzer Prize-winning winner (Becoming Nicole by science reporter Amy Ellis Nutt).
As a trans activist she rallies against transphobic bullying in schools, saying at a recent TEDTalk in Maine: ‘Trans youth, like most young people, spend the majority of their time at school.
‘If you spent Monday to Friday from 8 to 3 being told that you weren’t okay, that you were wrong, how are you meant to think otherwise?’
Omg 26k follwers???!! I can’t even tell you all how thankful I am!! Thank you thank you thank you! I hope I can continue to inspire more people to have the courage to live life as their authentic selves and be proud of who they are! #thisiswhattranslookslike #transisbeautiful #transactivist #transgender #mtf #CoreyMaison
A photo posted by Corey Maison ❣ (@coreymaison) on Jun 15, 2016 at 7:35pm PDT
7 Corey Maison
Corey, who is 14, made headlines this year with a powerful YouTube video explaining how she came to embrace her trans identity after years of being bullied by kids and adults alike.
‘Almost ever day I cam home from school crying,’ she bravely revealed. ‘They would make up lies to get me into trouble. One of the kids told me I should kill myself because nobody likes me anyway. He told me no one would miss me if I was dead.’
She credits Jazz Jennings with helping her embrace her trans identity, and now it seems she couldn’t be happier – or more adorable!
— alex jacob (@crucifalex) March 29, 2016
8 Alex Jacob
Trans teen Alex got in on the #MomentsInTransition along with the aforementioned Gabrielle back in March, highlighting how a simple act like cutting your hair can be life-changing for a trans person.
Earlier this month Alex posted an emotional YouTube video announcing that he is soon to undergo top surgery.
‘I literally cannot process how awesome this feels,’ he said. ‘It still feels unreal that this is actually happening. I don’t even believe it. I’m so happy.’ Good for you Alex!
— Landon Patterson (@LandonHavok) December 12, 2015
9 Landon Patterson
Landon, now 18, came out as trans last year before being named homecoming queen at her school prom in Kansas City.
She told BuzzFeed News: ‘To be elected homecoming queen was an amazing feeling.
‘I was so excited that my peers felt so accepting of me and excited that I was making history for the trans/LGBT community.’