My son, now grown,
testing the wind for flight.
Already he has reached my height
and will surpass it.
His feet still too big
to grow into.
His hands great feats of flesh
to mould and caress.
This boy, this child, this man;
I glimpse his soul through the puzzle
of teenage eyes, the half turn of his head
as his boyish grin breaks through.
Then he sets his sights on the future
and soon, too soon, will be gone.
“A gender-equal society would be one where the word ‘gender’ does not exist: where everyone can be themselves.”*
I’ve always been aware of gender conditioning and actively tried to combat any lingering prejudices or stereotypes in my own parenting, even down to encouraging dolls with my boys when they were little. It’s great to read people writing about gender issues they’re experiencing with their kids. For too long these subjects have been discouraged or silenced. I’d love to publish some more creative writing on this topic, especially if you are struggling with a child who actively tries to move away from gender normative preferences. A society where everyone can be themselves – thanks Gloria for those aspirational words.
* Gloria Steinem