chapter  Letter 13
The Harm We’ve Done
WithTara Goldstein, benjamin lee hicks, Jenny Salisbury, Pam Baer
Pages 8

In this chapter, the author discusses the experiences of Two-Spirit youth and Two-Spirit families at school. The term “Two-Spirit” is used by some Indigenous people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ). Writer and teacher Chelsea Vowel explains that the term “Two-Spirit” was chosen to replace the term berdache during the 1990 inter-tribal Native American/First Nations Gay and Lesbian Conference in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The author first learned about the experiences of Two-Spirit youth at school when Alec Butler joined our research team and agreed to be interviewed for the LGBTQ Families Speak Out project. There are several important issues Alec raised in their interview. The first is about the impact of transphobic bullying. Transgender youth who are bullied often drop out of school. Without a high school and university education, they have difficulty finding a good job, and are often unemployed or underemployed.