How RUBIES Supports Transgender Youth Through Clothing

Today is National Trans Day of Visibility, and it's so important to talk about issues that affect the transgender population - especially those who are young and vulnerable.

Today is National Trans Day of Visibility, and it’s so important to talk about issues that affect the transgender population, especially those who are young and vulnerable. Today, we’re looking at RUBIES, a clothing line designed to help transgender and gender-fluid children feel comfortable and confident in their clothes. RUBIES, created by Jamie Alexander and named after his daughter Ruby, aims to provide inclusive clothing and support transgender kids and their parents.

Where did the idea for RUBIES come from?

Ruby in pink sweater and beanie, brown haird 11 year old girl

In the early days of Ruby’s childhood, she would wear board shorts and sweatpants for swimming and gymnastics. As she got older, her girlfriends started wearing bikinis, and Ruby wanted to join them, but her parents worried about her safety and comfort in a bathing suit. Looking around, the family found some clothing options suitable for trans girls, but not nearly enough, and through speaking to families of other trans children, they realized that accessing comfortable swimwear was a huge problem.

Not one to wait for a solution, Jamie and his wife worked with a business incubator to get the idea for an inclusive swimwear line off the ground. In just a few months, RUBIES was up and running.

How else can you empower your trans child?

Allowing children to express themselves in any way they want, including clothing, hair and makeup choices is crucial to helping them form their identity. Starting this early help to destigmatize gender nonconformity. Another great way to help your child is to find camps and schools that are inclusive and accommodating to all genders. Meeting with teachers and counsellors to inform them of your child’s transgender status can also help to ensure they are included and correctly referred to around their peers. Finally, attending trans marches with your kid can help them feel as though they aren’t alone, and can give them positive role models to aspire to, as well as instilling a sense of pride in their identity.

How can you be supportive and accepting of a child who is transitioning?

It’s important that trans kids feel as though they have a safe space in which they can be their authentic selves. Listening openly to your children’s wishes and accepting their gender identity fosters trust and an open relationship with them. Normalizing gender diversity in your home can also help, from the way you divide labour in the household to the types of media that you consume. It’s also important to be an advocate for your kid to people outside of your home, like teacher, counsellors or even other family members. Ensuring your child is recognized as themselves, and not misgendered or misnamed goes a long way.

Most importantly though, ask your child what they need from you. The wants and needs of each child are unique, and the only way to be sure you’re child feels heard is by listening to them yourself.

How can inclusive clothing help trans kids?

Inclusive clothing that aligns with a kid’s gender identity can help them feel more comfortable and confident in their bodies and clothing. This means kids have more time to enjoy their childhood, rather than being preoccupied with thoughts of how they present themselves.

Here are some of their top selling products!

To check out RUBIES and support their wonderful business, visit their website.

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