Saturday, May 21, 2011

Wildcard Weekend: Love's Gender

This weekend's offering is a story today from Toronto about a couple who have decided to keep the sex of their new baby a secret. Instead, raising the baby, "Storm", according to whatever gender suits the child. The only people who know the baby's sex are the couple's older boys, a close family friend, and the midwife that was present at the birth. The family encourages gender exploration in their children; the older boys frequently have long hair and wear pink dresses, although this makes me wonder if the parents are not unfairly reinforcing interest in the non-traditional gender behavior, since it doesn't seem like gender exploration if a little boy plays with a truck.

Their extended family was hesitantly supportive, but the majority of the population seems to regard the decision as a kind of child abuse or experimentation, and has attracted a lot of negative comments and criticism. I'd be lying if I said I had not thought about this during anthropology and psychology courses, and it would likely not be as emotionally damaging as people are assuming, but it's still to risky to use a child in a social experiment, no matter how well-intentioned.

Rock on, crazy world.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

OK, I'm coming around to the view that there's way too much emphasis on gender, too many forms that ask "sex: m/f" without really needing the information, etc. But hiding it seems to be swinging the pendulum way too far over.
lol, mapa