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How to survive Christmas with your transphobic relatives

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It’s Christmas and that means chestnuts roasting on an open fire, turkey sandwiches and horrifying transphobia from your relatives.

Last year we gave you a guide to surviving Christmas with your Trump supporting relatives, so it’s time to address this year’s hottest Christmas topic – transphobia!

Here’s a guide on battling some of the worst arguments that your transphobic relatives may bring up over the festive season to help out or, as a last resort, to print out and wrap as a present to give to an especially terrible relative.

“But there are only two genders!”


The gender binary (the idea that there are only two genders and everyone is one or the other) is wrong in so many ways. Gender is a spectrum. Even if your relatives don’t ‘believe in it’, it’s still a spectrum.

Your gender is the way you feel inside in relation to ideas of masculinity, femininity and androgyny, and these feelings are often far more complicated than just man or woman.

Third genders and other genders have existed for literally thousands of years.

There are references to third genders in Mesopotamian mythology and also on pottery shards from Ancient Egypt, both from around 4000 years ago. Returning to modern times, many countries now recognise the existence of other genders and the list is growing each year as non-binary people become more recognised.

So no, there aren’t just two genders.

“You’re just born as a girl or a boy! Sex equals gender!”

‘Girl’ and ‘boy’ or ‘woman’ and ‘man’ are terms that refer to gender identities, not biological sexes.

A gender is how a person feels inside (their gender identity) which is often shown by how they dress, their name and the pronouns they use (their gender expression.)

This is completely unrelated to biological sex, which is also a bit more complicated than your relatives might think.

“Why are you trying to get boys to be girls?”

No one is trying to make boys be girls, or girls be boys. We’re actually trying to let boys be boys and girls be girls.

Trans boys are boys, trans girls are girls. Some people aren’t a boy or a girl. Some people are more than that.

“Trans people didn’t exist back in my day!”


Oh yes, there were, they just didn’t tell you.

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