The literature on transgender/transsexual-spectrum persons is limited. Most studies are based on the assumption that trans persons are best understood within rigid and binary definitions of gender and sexuality and tend to focus on diagnostics, medical management and risk factors. Researchers and clinicians may also assume that people who challenge cultural norms of gender and sexuality can be grouped together. Such assumptions about the specific experiences of trans persons can be harmfully incorrect. The goals of the present study were to explore the gender and sexual identities of trans persons, to investigate group differences, and to examine factors that predict better psychological and physical well-being. Participants took part in an online study and provided information about their gender and sexual identity, social support, relationship quality, and mental/physical health. Results depicted diverse gender identities and sexual orientations among trans persons and emphasized that while many challenges faced by sexual and gender minorities are similar, trans persons report unique mental and physical health outcomes. Also, greater social support and relationship quality predicted mental, but not physical, health among trans persons. These results highlight the importance of acknowledging the complexity of trans identities and the key role of social and personal support.


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pp. 60-74
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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