This show is the first in a new series on the experiences of LGBTQ teens in Maine. This episode features a conversation with high school junior AJ, who identifies as gender-neutral. AJ discusses the challenges of not identifying as either a girl or a boy, and the value of finding allies within a new school.
My guest this week is researcher Dr. Elizabeth Saewyc, who studies the impact of stigma on adolescents. Her research has demonstrated that when schools are made safer for LGBTQ kids, they are safer for everyone, including the largest group targeted by anti-gay bullying: straight boys.
A collection of short stories from young people about how they came out to themselves and others.
In the second half of our conversation, poet Richard Blanco talks and reads poems about how he navigates the homophobia in his family and in the world.