Trans Icon Janet Mock Gives Heartfelt Advice To Young People Struggling With Identity

05/20/2015 03:53 pm ET | Updated Feb 02, 2016

As a kid, transgender icon Janet Mock felt like her gender identity was policed by those around her.

In a recent video for the "It Got Better" project, Mock explained what it was like to grow up as a gender-nonconforming child in Honolulu, Hawaii and Oakland, California, and discussed the obstacles she faced as she began to live authentically as a young trans girl.

"A lot of the struggles for me came with resources," she said. "Trying to find affordable and sensitive healthcare as a trans girl, trying to get access to gender affirming procedures that I needed as a young person... a lot of the ways in which I dealt with it and a lot of my girlfriends dealt with it was underground economies."

The "Redefining Realness" author gave the interview in conjunction with the "It Got Better" collaboration with Lexus. Celebrities like Jane Lynch and Laverne Cox have also participated in the interview series.

Mock also offered advice in the interview to young people who may feel different.

"I think what I would tell a young person that is struggling with difference or with their identity is to not listen to anyone but yourself -- to be unapologetic in your own voice, in your own experiences of what's authentic and real to you, to surround yourself with people who validate and affirm your identity and your truth and to, as much as possible, silence those negative voices that try to negate who you know yourself to be."

Check out the interview with Mock above. Want to see more from the "It Got Better" and Lexus collaboration? Head here.

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