The First Time My Son Chose to Wear a Dress in Public


It was the day before an event for which I was speaking. I had just finished up work and was heading out for the day when I realized this would be the last opportunity to run some last minute errands before my speaking event. I had my ten-year-old son with me since he attends school where I work. Our first stop was going to be at a women’s clothing store to pick up some accessories that matched my dress. I had just been in there to purchase my new dress. The store was nice, but not fancy, with a huge display of bright and colorful spring ensembles and dresses in the latest trending patterns and fabrics. I knew that my son would be in complete awe.

As I’ve written about before, my youngest child is gender creative. This means that he does not want to change his anatomy or be a girl (at least not at this point in his life). He simply prefers all the things that are marketed to girls, and tends to bond better with girls than with boys. Continue reading

Listen to Your Mother

In January, 2016, a long-time theatre friend told me about local auditions for an event called Listen to Your Mother. I had never heard of this event, so I looked into it. It was a live reading event, much like a Tedx Talk, but from the perspective of  (or about) motherhood. Cast members could be men or women, mothers, sons, daughters, or grandchildren, telling their stories on what their mother or mother-figure taught them, or on what the learned from being a mother – in its many senses of the word. There were humorous stories, thought-provoking stories, and tear-jerkers. There were controversial topics and universally embraced themes. It seemed right up my alley, since I’ve been performing on stage for 30+ years, and blogging about being a parent to a gender creative child for 8 years. Continue reading

When Your 4th Grade Son is Called ‘Gay’

(originally published on The Huffington Post)

I guess it’s the inevitable happening. But I was hoping it wouldn’t. My 9-year-old gender creative son has become acutely aware that most of society thinks a little boy owning stereotypical “girls’ stuff” is inappropriate. Though he boldly chose, and wears to school a backpack matching his personality: a glittery rainbow explosion of kittens, hearts, and cupcakes, in 4th grade, he is excluded by peers. Almost overnight he has learned the ugly truth about gender stereotypes. In our house, we don’t have “boy toys” or “girl toys.” The understanding for our family of five is that we just have “toys,” and everyone can play. Continue reading