Can I get hormones or hormone blockers online?

Using hormones or blockers that you have purchased online without medical guidance or knowing the quality of the product, can be very dangerous. You should always speak to your GP to discuss your options.

When can I start hormone treatments or hormone blockers? Do I need my parents/ guardian’s permission?

You can access hormone treatments from around the age of 16, however this is based on assessment and individual cases may vary.

Your health care professional will always try to persuade you to inform your parents/guardians, but they must respect your wishes not to disclose as long as you are able to consent to your treatment.

Do I have to have surgery to be transgender?

No, you don’t have to have surgery to be transgender.  Regardless of whether you choose to transition medically, socially or both, your gender identity should always be respected regardless of how you decide to transition.

When can I have gender reassignment surgery?

This probably won’t be an option until you are over 18 in Northern Ireland, however, you can discuss this with your doctor before you are 18. 

It is likely that the surgery won’t be performed until you are older and to be eligible for it, you must have completed your social gender role transition. This simply means that you have to live in your preferred gender identity role full time for at least a year to help confirm that surgery is the right option for you. Normally, during this time you will be taking the hormones of your preferred gender to help your body become more female or more male, depending on your gender. 

For further information contact Belfast Trans Resource Centre:

When can I begin hormone treatment?

Under NHS guidelines, if you have gender dysphoria and have reached puberty you can ask to receive hormone treatment. The hormone treatment is man-made and will suppress the hormones naturally produced by the body to slow puberty and potentially delay physical changes caused by your body becoming more like that of your biological sex until you are old enough for other treatment options.

Under NHS guidelines you can only receive hormone treatment if you are experiencing distress living as your birth sex and have a strong desire to live as your gender identity. This treatment is normally reversible and can be stopped at any time.

The guidelines indicate that in most cases, when you turn 17 you may be seen in an adult gender clinic and you can start to think about permanent hormone or surgical treatments to alter your body further to fit with your gender identity.

“Gender affirming” hormones may be available if you are under 18, although guidelines do not recommend that under 16s receive this treatment.  This is something you would need to discuss with your GP and/or a medical professional.