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Researchers studied the mental health of 73 trans kids. This is what they found.

A new study shows why it's critical we support our transgender youth.

"Everything was fantastic."

That's how Evie Priestman's mother felt about her son's experience at summer camp as a middle schooler. Evie, a transgender boy, had decided to tell his fellow campers about his gender identity on the very last day, and it went over smoothly.

"I have always had a supportive family and felt accepted," Evie told NBC News years later, noting his community is diverse and welcoming.


A first-of-its kind study examined the mental health of young children and preteens whose parents supported their transitions.

And the results are, honestly, not all that surprising.

Photo by Pascal Pavani/AFP/Getty Images.

The researchers found that trans kids who've been supported by their loved ones are doing pretty darn well.

Researchers out of the University of Washington studied 73 transgender kids and 73 cisgender (non-transgender) kids, ages 3 to 12, by asking parents a series of questions on their children's mental health.

They found that between both groups, rates of depression were equal among trans kids who are supported by their family and their cisgender peers, and rates of anxiety were only "a smidge higher" among the trans youth.

Photo by Jeff Pachoud/AFP/Getty Images.

"The thinking has always been that kids who are not acting gender-stereotypically are basically destined to have mental health problems," Kristina Olson, lead author of the study, told NBC."In our study, that's not the case."

"More families are allowing their transgender children to live and present to others as their gender identity. This is the first study to examine mental health in these children, finding that they have low levels of anxiety and depression."
— "
Mental Health of Transgender Children Who Are Supported in Their Identities," published in Pediatrics

The results show that loving parents and an accepting environment make a profound difference on a trans child's mental health.

And that no, trans kids don't have mental health issues by default. (I'd guess it's probably the relentless transphobic messages our society sends them that do most of the damage.)

Photo by Dondi Tawatao/Getty Images.

"Transgender individuals have been found to have highly elevated rates of anxiety and depression, but little is known about the mental health of transgender children whose identities are affirmed and supported by their families," the study explains, noting that mental health disorders are "not inevitable within this group."

Although the study can't prove parental acceptance results in improved outcomes for trans children, it "certainly suggests that family support is linked to better mental health."

The findings build on previous research that found a correlation between family acceptance and whether a trans person had attempted suicide.

The study's findings are important because they affirm the idea that trans kids especially need our love and acceptance.

Seeing the rampant transphobia throughout our culture, it's no wonder trans youth live with higher rates of depression, are more likely to be suicidal, and face alarmingly high levels of homelessness (spurred by parental rejection).

This study shows that this doesn't have to be the case.

Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images.

Because, really, at the end of the day, shouldn't every kid deserve to be accepted as themselves?

"For me and any other trans individual, I feel like the only thing that is changing about yourself is the pronoun and the way I look," Evie said. "Your personality doesn't change. You are still the same person."

And a person that deserves the same love and respect as anyone else.

A breastfeeding mother's experience at Vienna's Schoenbrunn Zoo is touching people's hearts—but not without a fair amount of controversy.

Gemma Copeland shared her story on Facebook, which was then picked up by the Facebook page Boobie Babies. Photos show the mom breastfeeding her baby next to the window of the zoo's orangutan habitat, with a female orangutan sitting close to the glass, gazing at them.

"Today I got feeding support from the most unlikely of places, the most surreal moment of my life that had me in tears," Copeland wrote.

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Democracy

The Onion filed a Supreme Court brief. It's both hilariously serious and seriously hilarious.

Who else could call the judiciary 'total Latin dorks' while making a legitimate point?

The Onion's Supreme Court brief uses parody to defend parody.

Political satire and parody have been around for at least 2,400 years, as ancient Greek playwright Aristophanes satirized the way Athenian leaders conducted the Peloponnesian War and parodied the dramatic styles of his contemporaries, Aeschylus and Euripides.

Satire and parody are used to poke fun and highlight issues, using mimicry and sarcasm to create comedic biting commentary. No modern outlet has been more prolific on this front than The Onion, and the popular satirical news site is defending parody as a vital free speech issue in a legal filing with the U.S. Supreme Court.

The filing is, as one might expect from The Onion, as brilliantly hilarious as it is serious, using the same satirical style it's defending in the crafting of the brief itself.

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She's enjoying the big benefits of some simple life hacks.

James Clear’s landmark book “Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones” has sold more than 9 million copies worldwide. The book is incredibly popular because it has a simple message that can help everyone. We can develop habits that increase our productivity and success by making small changes to our daily routines.

"It is so easy to overestimate the importance of one defining moment and underestimate the value of making small improvements on a daily basis,” James Clear writes. “It is only when looking back 2 or 5 or 10 years later that the value of good habits and the cost of bad ones becomes strikingly apparent.”

His work proves that we don’t need to move mountains to improve ourselves, just get 1% better every day.

Most of us are reluctant to change because breaking old habits and starting new ones can be hard. However, there are a lot of incredibly easy habits we can develop that can add up to monumental changes.

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