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tiny note on gender and parenting

A zillion and a half of you have probably already seen S. Bear Bergman's article in Slate today, on "gender-neutral" parenting and suchlike; if not, it's here.

It reminded me, though, of a question that I don't think I've really publicly answered about gender and my kids. So I'll take this opportunity to issue a wee policy statement just for the record.

I gave my kids very gender-marked names, and I used (and continue to use) gendered pronouns until asked to do otherwise by my kids. (Simone negotiates her pronouns differently according to different audiences; so far she says it's OK for me to use "she.") I did, in fact, think this choice through before I took the plunge. I can't help it at this point (the thinking through, that is).

But I am in favor of a thousand flowers blooming, and more than one right answer, and all that. And for me and my family, I went for aesthetics. And I also find often that, unless one is very careful, gender-neutral parenting can turn easily into femmephobia. Which is why I often say I prefer gender-exuberant as a term, and a practice.

And why you will find my children occasionally wearing tutus on their head.

Sparkle the Poodle

That's "Sparkle the Poodle," fyi.

Comments

And I also find often that, unless one is very careful, gender-neutral parenting can turn easily into femmephobia.

I appreciate you for this so much.
I think it's time to start getting the kids together for dress up time. Or Homeroom. Or both. What's your weekend like?
Sunday is packed, but Saturday is wide open -- and Saturday night is Game Night at our place and you're both certainly invited. Next weekend is even clearer :)
Game Night with kids sounds fun. What time?

7 pm.
Oh yes, that point about the femmephobia is so dead-on. It's been a tough thing for me. Thank you.
thank you
Anything that encourages wearing tutus on your head has to be a good thing.
Therefore anything that discourages it, is a bad thing.
XOXOXO