Thousands of children are searching online for advice about being transgender, a new survey has revealed.
Researchers found that views on the transgender page of the Childline website have almost doubled in a year.
Views on the web page jumped from 6,867 between April 17-March 18 to 12,343 times between April 2018-March 2019. The transgender page on Childline website went live in December 2015.
Childline, which is run by the NSPCC, offers a 24-hour confidential helpline service for children.
Children as young as 11 now use the service to speak about their gender or sexual identity as well as their experiences of bullying and issues with their mental or emotional health.
One boy told counsellors: “I have been feeling depressed and suicidal for about three years. My parents don't understand me at all. I came out as Trans and they think it’s just a phase and refuse to accept me. I am in pain.”
The data also revealed that Childline carried out 6,014 counselling sessions with children and young people about issues relating to gender and sexuality last year - which equated to 16-a-day on average.
Among these counselling sessions, the service saw a 40 per cent increase in concerns about coming out. The figure rose from 1,508 counselling sessions in 2017/18 to 2,110 in 2018/19.