Found another 'Pink Boy' article

Clippings from news sources involving fashion freedom and other gender equality issues.

Found another 'Pink Boy' article

Postby Skirt Chaser » Fri Jun 01, 2007 7:44 pm

[url="http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2007/04/08/CMGFTO8L9830.DTL&type=printable"]http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2007/04/08/CMGFTO8L9830.DTL&type=printable[/url]

Very good article pointing out that normal covers a lot of variety and letting a person be who they are is the best way to go.

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Postby Charlie » Fri Jun 01, 2007 10:17 pm

A nice article. It reminds me of when my son was little. He used to carry one of his mum's old handbags around, much to the concern of other mums. They told my wife he'd grow up to be gay. She ignored them and let him get it out of his system. Just as well they didn't see him wearing his sister's Brownie uniform, or his mum's wedding dress (he loved to dress up).

Now, he's a typical man in his mid 20's, working hard, wears jeans every day and 'between girlfriends'. And he thinks I'm weird for wearing skirts!!

The moral is, as the article pointed out, let them be. They'll be much happier.

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Postby Departed Member » Sat Jun 02, 2007 12:21 am

Interesting! Seems a little 'gender-biased', but that seems to be the societal 'norm'. Little girls are actively encouraged to be 'tom-boys' (as if it, someway, is a 'bonus'), whilst little boys are actively discouraged from so-called 'feminine' pursuits (made to feel guilty or, that they're doing something 'wrong'). Odd, really! The matriachal figure was 'dominant' when I was a child - more so in the 'Industrial' areas. The fact that some of us boys might wear a dress in infancy held no 'stigma' then - didn't make us 'want to be girls', that's for sure! I'm certain that Skirts were associated with 'dominance' (safety/stability, if you will), which may be why some blokes feel 'threatened' if confronted by 'a bloke in a skirt' (& I include Kilts in this thesis, too). It's not a 'fem' issue - more the perception of childhood memories of those powerful beings around us who wore skirts.
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Why does he have to choose?

Postby AMM » Mon Jun 04, 2007 2:20 am

The thing that gets me when I read this articles is the extent to which a boy wanting "girly" things is assumed to arise from some innate desire to be a girl. It's all this sex-linking of stuff that, in my mind, is not necessarily gender based. Why does a boy wanting to wear a tutu mean that he is either "a girl in a boy's body" or gay?

Why does he have to choose between being a boy and accepting his desires?

I could cry for the boy who sobs, "why didn't Mommy make me a girl?" But I wonder: if he were allowed to do all those "girl-only" things without being made to feel weird or ashamed for it, would he feel that it was such a tragedy that he was born a boy?


It's usually assumed that the feeling that one is really a girl, despite having a boy's body, is the reason why a boy will gravitate towards "girlish" things. But couldn't it just as well be the other way around: if you grow up feeling that only a girl would want to wear a dress, or look "pretty", and had a deep, deep longing for these things, might you not come to feel that the only explanation is that you must deep down inside really be a girl?

Our society divides most of human experience into two columns: the "girls-only" column and the "boys-only" column. For a long time, a girl that wanted something in the "boys-only" column, e.g., to drive a truck, was assumed to have gender identity problems (remember "penis envy"?) One of the great accomplishments of feminism has been to mostly eliminate this idiocy. A girl can now even want to play [US] football without having it generally assumed that she really wants to be a man. But people are still assuming that a boy that wants to do "girl-only" things must have a gender identity problem.

I recall being attracted to dresses and pretty gowns and tights when I was a boy, as well as trains (toy and full-sized), yet had no desire to become a girl; if anything, the idea that I might wake up one morning to find I had been transformed into a girl was a recurrent half-nightmare. Growing up in the ante-bellum South (Virginia, in the '50's and '60's) and not being suicidal, I never acted on these attractions. But I wonder: if I had lived in a place and a family that could say, "what's the big deal, anyway?" would I still feel these attractions? And even if I still did, would I have been able to make peace with them and fit them into the larger picture of my life long ago, and not still feel like I'm being pulled apart all the time, no matter what I do?

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"Gender variance" and homosexuality

Postby AMM » Mon Jun 04, 2007 2:56 am

(I guess this article really pushed my buttons, if I feel the need to write *two* follow-ups!)

Both the referenced article and a brochure on "gender variance" I found through Google quoted statistics that the majority (3/4?) of "gender variant" children grow up to be "homosexual."

This one set my BS detector off.

For one thing, people are only just now starting to try to look at this topic objectively. It will take decades before they even know what questions to ask.

For another, both gender variance and homosexuality are loaded topics. Add to it that they are dealing with children. I don't think that the people studying this are going to be capable of transcending their prejudices, or that they are even going to be aware of most of them. Not because I think they are bad people, but because it requires a level of consciousness-raising among many, many people over a long time before anyone can have any confidence in their awareness of their internalized prejudices, and that just has not been done.

Our understanding of "gender variance" is now where our understanding of homosexuality was a century ago. And I think most of us know how much our understanding of homosexuality has changed. (And it's still pretty mixed up.)

As for the statistic, I'd want to know how they defined gender variance, how they defined "homosexual", and how they matched "gender variant" children with homosexual vs. non-homosexual adults. (Did they follow them over 20 years? I suspect not.) Most statistics are BS (even when the numbers are correct.) And statistics from studies made before people have enough experience to know all the ways you can do it wrong are even more likely to be suspect.


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Postby ChrisM » Mon Jun 04, 2007 11:52 am

AMM asked "But I wonder: if I had lived in a place and a family that could say, "what's the big deal, anyway?" would I still feel these attractions?"

My friend, I did grow up in a family that said "no big deal." As a wee lad, back in my foggiest memories (4 or 5 years old maybe?) I recall that I had a favorite dress I wore, and a doll house I loved.

In later years I retained an affection for lace and frills, for example at costume parties wishing to dress as the Count of Monte Cristo, or some such.

I also built automobile engines, dug holes in the mud, climbed trees, and did whatever else I fancied. I never have liked ball sports.

And I have never wanted to be a girl.

I grew up in a household in which one was permitted to be whoever you wanted to be. As a result I am now a successful businessman who chooses freely what he wants to do or not to do. I conform poorly, because I do what I choose, not what they choose. Sometimes these choices are in alignment, in fact maybe most of the time, but those times when they diverge can be dramatic - and skirt wearing is only one example.

All the best,

Chris
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Postby Stu » Fri Jun 15, 2007 11:00 pm

Check out this discussion on a psoriasis forum:

http://www.psoriasis-help.org.uk/forum/ ... 77.new#new

My 11-year-old son, Kyle, is off school at the moment because he has a skin condition in the small of his back and in his groin and the upper-insides of his thighs....

Our little boy can't wear trousers or even shorts because he finds the skin-to-cloth contact too painful....


We have to get there and when we do, we don't intend to spend the whole time in the hotel and Kyle can't travel about in his dressing gown so I've bought him half-a-dozen plain girls' cotton dresses. Yes, it's a bit unorthodox but they are the only proper clothes he is comfortable in and he would rather wear them than stay indoors all the time or miss his holiday....


So, boys possibly wear skirts etc because it could damage their sexual identity - but somehow that doesn't happen if they wear a dress because they have a nasty skin condition.

Hmmm

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Postby Milfmog » Sat Jun 16, 2007 10:54 am

Stu wrote:So, boys possibly wear skirts etc because it could damage their sexual identity - but somehow that doesn't happen if they wear a dress because they have a nasty skin condition.

Hmmm

Stu

That's right, most people do not stop and think for themselves or they'd spot how illogical their thought processes were. Sad but there it is.

The good part is that when this sort of muddled thinking is pointed out to them (quietly) they usually learn, perhaps not initially (their previous conditioning makes them push back) but later, when they are sitting quietly or lying awake in bed, the logic slowly starts to seep in.

Talking reasonably to people is one of the most effective tools in our box for getting people to think and then accept our choice of clothing. Shouting or preaching at them will rarely cause them to stop and consider whether their own perspectives could be wrong.

Have fun,


Ian.
Do not argue with idiots; they will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.
Cogito ergo sum - Descartes
Cogito cogito ergo cogito sum - Ambrose Bierce
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Postby staticsan » Fri Jun 22, 2007 6:36 am

So many messages I could quote from...

I'm wrestling with the wearing-skirts/kilts-is-a-gender-identity-issue thing. Except that it's kinda really not. You see, I know I'm quite definitely hetero: a guy simply does not 'do it' for me, but a girl can. But I still have a desire to wear skirts. So am I girl in a man's body? Only if I'm really a lesbian... :D

I've been speaking about it to my counsellor/therapist. Amongst other things, I've been exploring what means to Be a Man - whatever that means. Wearing a kilt or skirt in public usually requires a certain level of "sod-you" in regard to what others may think or do. It also requires a sense of certainty in your own maleness to wear a garment notionally associated with females. This is a challenge, but a good challenge. It can make us seriously look at our sexual identity and figure it out.

I've always liked (a subset of) boy things. Trains and cars, electronics, computers and sound systems, building things, pulling things apart, the list goes on... any fascination a doll's house has ever had for me is the architecture and floorplan. But add in a desire for skirts and I'm accused of trying to be a girl? Sorry, doesn't compute. :wink:

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Postby Topsy » Sat Jun 23, 2007 4:30 pm

There is a copy of the original post abot the 11-year old here http://www.healthypages.net/forum/tm.asp?m=456137&mpage=1&#457849
which includes a follow up post.
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Postby AMM » Sat Jun 23, 2007 4:49 pm

staticsan wrote:I've always liked (a subset of) boy things. Trains and cars, electronics, computers and sound systems, building things, pulling things apart, the list goes on... But add in a desire for skirts and I'm accused of trying to be a girl? Sorry, doesn't compute. :wink:


When I was growing up, in the Ante-bellum South, it wasn't just skirt-wearing that was "only for girls." In my family, we boys (the one girl came along when I was 9) all learned to cook, clean, do laundry, and sew, and when the baby girl came along, we also learned to change diapers and feed babies. But to the folks around us, all of these activities were only for girls. On the occasions when I mentioned to my schoolmates cooking for myself, or sewing a button on, the way they looked at me, I might as well have been wearing an Easter dress.

Of course, just about everything I or anyone in my family did was regarded as Hopelessly Weird by the kids around me, including my cousins, so what was one Crime of Weirdness more or less? It didn't take much to be considered beyond the pale in the Ante-Bellum South, so even if we had all eschewed everything that anyone could accuse of being "unmasculine," we would have still been seen as freaks. (With all that love and acceptance, I wonder why I've never had any urge to move back there?)

And I had my father's example: he was an electrical engineer, a railfan, home carpenter and electrician, but he also cooked when my mother was away (and on special occasions), changed my sister's diapers (and ours, too, I suppose, though I was too young to remember), and had his own sewing machine (a top-of-the-line Swiss-made one with lots of fancy stiches built in -- what else would a techie buy?)

He didn't wear skirts, though. (Or even kilts)

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