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Raising gender-neutral or gender-specific kids.....Does it matter?

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posted on May, 25 2011 @ 10:11 PM
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Judging by the responses this thread has garnered all I can really say is, "Thank God I was raised when I was".

I will be raising my son (someday) the same way all of the men in my family have been raised; I am not buying the whole "gender roles are dangerous" bull#.

Blame the parents who probably didn't learn their own lessons. A man who powders his cheeks won't be teaching his son how to change his truck's oil or how to split wood so his mum can relax when she gets home for work.

[sarcasm]
If it ain't broke, don't fix it. (gender roles, circa 14,000 BC)
[/sarcasm]




posted on May, 25 2011 @ 11:15 PM
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reply to post by Aeons
 





Because, you could never have ended up being a man if someone hadn't shown you? So guys. Are you telling me that men are a complete social construction, and that without society and other men forcing it that you're all just a bunch of hairless chimpanzees?


What you fail to realize is that everything is a complete social construction, and yes males are conditioned into there roles and so are females. At the most base levels both males and females are hairless apes. So yes men are a social construction, but so are females. So to recap what you know about males is a social construct that you have been conditioned into knowing, and everything that you think you are as a female is a social construct because of conditioning to make it so.

Get it now? Other then one has a penis and the other a vagina and all that entails in terms of physical conditions for survival, everything else is a social construct to one degree or another by way of generations and generations of social programing going back to when humans were hairless apes living in caves.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 02:26 AM
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reply to post by galadofwarthethird
 





What you fail to realize is that everything is a complete social construction, and yes males are conditioned into there roles and so are females.


Quoted for truth. And it is the role of parents to teach their children basic social constructions of the society they live in. Because if parents wont, bullies and ridiculers will.

In fact, this is even worse from social viewpoint than transgender kids. They at least have one gender role as usual, not so for these girl-boys..



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 06:34 AM
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I think the response to this topic is:

"The World has gone mad" Literally.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 06:35 AM
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Personally, whilst I am against the sheeple mentality, I do believe that if you are a male, you be raised as a male and female as a female. Imagine what happens when you get to school, what is going to await you? We all know that kids can be cruel for people who are different but this is going to screw the child up surely?



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 08:19 AM
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Originally posted by Aeons
So guys. Are you telling me that men are a complete social construction, and that without society and other men forcing it that you're all just a bunch of hairless chimpanzees?


Of course men are a bunch of hairless apes; women are a bunch of hairless apes, as well.

Masculinity and femininity come about through biological factors. Gender-specific clothing, hairstyles, jewellery, make-up and various accoutrements are arbitrary social constructs.

If I went around in a pink dress and wore my hair in pigtails ( in fact, I'd look rather dashing and dapper if I did ), then that wouldn't detract from any inherent, biological masculinity. However, society would disagree. I'd get labelled a ''fag'', ''homo'', ''poof'', ''girl'' etc. because I transgressed society's code of what's appropriate or acceptable for how a man should look.

Obviously, masculinity and femininity are far less advanced and defined in children before they hit puberty. Gender-roles for boys and girls are of practical importance because, in most cases, they will ease the transition period between childhood and adulthood.

If the 5-year-old in the story carries on dressing in a similar fashion until he hits puberty, then he is going to be in a huge state of confusion. Male hormones will be raging around, yet society will look upon him as a he-she. He'll seek other boys to form bonds with and look for girls to date, but they won't want to hang around with someone who doesn't fit into the normal male/female dynamic.

He may well then opt to dress normally, but the human ego is fragile, and how ''normal'' will he actually be after suffering all this emotional abuse from his parents and peers ?

He will still be a man, but he is likely to have difficulty confidently acting like a man, due to the low self-esteem and mental trauma that this needless and cruel upbringing will bring about.

The fact is that people's happiness and quality of life is largely dependent on successful social interaction with others. Some people may say that they prefer solitude, but I would suggest that they wish to be on their own mainly due to misanthropic tendencies they have developed from previous unsuccessful or unhappy social interactions. To limit the potential for successful relationships and, consequently, more fulfilling lives - as this couple are doing - is child cruelty.

So, yes, manliness is inherently biological, but the ability to act and express it can be curtailed by a multitude of external factors. Encouraging and guiding a boy or girl to be able to express themselves as individuals is important, but this has to be done within the very broad societal framework in which they are being brought up in.

If people are unhappy with how human society works, then they shouldn't be bringing a child into the world unless they are willing to bring them up within the limits of that society. Don't dream up a fantasy-world of how the world should work, and then force this la-la-land fantasy on to your children's actual reality.

As Maslo said, any social change needs to be instigated by adults, and I don't see these ''parents'' dressing in a way that may lead them to be socially ostracised or excluded.


There is no way that people should use their children as innocent guinea-pigs in a warped and twisted social experiment.


edit on 26-5-2011 by Sherlock Holmes because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 09:02 AM
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In this case the parents are doing the right thing.
They have all bt told the world that Storm is a hermapherdite and has both sets. They said that Storm when of age could 'choose' for themself.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 11:31 AM
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Originally posted by ..5..
In this case the parents are doing the right thing.
They have all bt told the world that Storm is a hermapherdite and has both sets. They said that Storm when of age could 'choose' for themself.



They did? Where.

I read this article from several sources and don't recall anything like that mentioned.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 11:46 AM
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reply to post by Annee
 


They wouldn't wave it around like a flag. You have to learn to read between the lines.

They said they would let Storm 'choose' what s/he wants to be. Only hermapherdites have that 'choice'.
The parents are afraid of choosing the wrong sex for their child to be. It has happened many many times. The one thaht comes to mind was when the parents chose for the child to be male and in his teen years he believes he is gay.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 01:13 PM
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reply to post by Annee
 


If you had indeed read this article, like you claim, you would have seen where they are parading thier mystery meat.

"When parents ask us..."

"We think..."

What about what the child thinks? Oh yeah, it is just a baby and they are FORCING it to be gender neutral. Since, last I checked, babies couldn't make that descision on their own.

Furthermore, it is the parents that get all toddler when someone asks about the baby. It is the parents that act the fool in regards to the gender of the baby. It is the parents FORCING THEIR MORALS onto society, and their baby.

It is immature, and bordering on stupidity. Because, as I have demonstraited already, soceity sees this as wrong. SOCIETY sees this as wrong. SOCIETY SEES THIS AS WRONG. (Just wanted to put that up there three times, you keep thinking I say this is wrong.) Or should we chalk that up to your poor reading skills, as demonstraited by you not comprehending the article?

(I can use ad-hominems too! How about we debate, instead of attack?)
Who wants to bet the poster "forgets" that they insulted me (twice!)?



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 01:15 PM
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Originally posted by ..5..
reply to post by Annee
 


They wouldn't wave it around like a flag. You have to learn to read between the lines.

They said they would let Storm 'choose' what s/he wants to be. Only hermapherdites have that 'choice'.
The parents are afraid of choosing the wrong sex for their child to be. It has happened many many times. The one thaht comes to mind was when the parents chose for the child to be male and in his teen years he believes he is gay.


I am aware of stories of intersex children - - - and preferred "right of choice" when they are old enough to make their own decision - - - rather the parents/doctors making that choice for them with surgery.

However - - - I do not believe that has to be the case with these parents and their belief/thinking. But - - it could be.

This is not an article - - that I would read anything between the lines - - or make judgements.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 01:25 PM
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Originally posted by adigregorio
reply to post by Annee
 


If you had indeed read this article, like you claim, you would have seen where they are parading thier mystery meat.


Yes - - I read the article from several sources.

You have not "demonstrated" anything. You gave your viewpoint/opinion.

Which I have the right/choice - - to agree with or not.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 01:34 PM
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reply to post by greeneyedleo
 


just think of all the child suicides you could prevent every year with the removal of these extreme social expectations.

It would literally save alot of lives.
edit on 26-5-2011 by Wertdagf because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 03:17 PM
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I can't even read all the posts in the threads concerning Storm - it just goes to show how much society really does dictate who we turn out to be.

The only people who are confused are the ones who don't know what to do on their own, without the ideals forced upon them by society (do I buy pink? do I buy blue?)

My answer for them is simple, buy Yellow and get over it.

As a parent, my children wore every color of the rainbow - my children owned legos, matchbox cars, and barbie dolls - my children watched the lion king and the little mermaid. They watched dora and spongebob and blues clues. They watched chick flicks and action flicks and drama's and horror and every other movie genre you can think of

My children were taught that they have a choice and whatever makes them happy, makes me happy.

Last week my 17 year old dressed like a boy and a girl in the same day, and looked great both ways I must say.

In the reality of today, it doesn't matter unless they were born a boy and want to give birth or born a girl and want to play professional football
- and by the time any child is old enough to do either of those things, it'll be quite clear which they can or cannot do - Male and female roles have literally been interchangable for generations.

They are my children and I love them. They are not defined SOLELY by their gender.

And I'm pretty sure neither of them plan to go on a killing spree anytime soon - for starters neither wet the bed or disect animals for fun.... If they do I'll come back and read all the other posts.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 05:02 PM
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[reply to post by Forevever]


Thank you Forever. What an amazing post.

I too was allowed to do/be anything when I was a child. Raised in an all boy neighborhood with 2 brothers.

How did that affect me? It gave me the ability to be good friends with men.

My mom had a thing about Honesty. Let me tell you - - too much honesty in this society can be detrimental to a person.

I say - no matter what - - self worth comes first. I'm not seeing any problem here - - - unless there is Force to be a certain way.


edit on 26-5-2011 by Annee because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 07:34 PM
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Freakin' hippies. I need a license to carry a weapon or drive a car, but any pea-wit can be a parent.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 07:45 PM
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It is rather impossible for parents to not "force" their morals and views upon a child.... unless they just leave the kid to it's own devices and never interact with it (which isn't parenting).

My kids will be raised with my input on what I consider to be right, wrong, and a subject of opinion - and raised with the understanding that people will have all kinds of different views out there.

I'm not going to place myself up on top of some kind of self-righteous high-ground of "I don't force anything but neutrality upon my children." Kids don't come with instruction manuals and the whole process is interactive. You couldn't give me time-outs as a kid - I can entertain myself simply by darting my eyes around and thinking about anything that comes to mind - had no disciplinary effect on me. But a spanking? That was the damned apocalypse when mom and dad were so visibly upset with me as to spank me. ... Now - my brother - spanking him was a challenge - he is very stubborn and bull-headed - his response to spanking was to look at you like "You just wait until I'm as big as you, then just try that again." But stick him in the corner - where he was no longer the center of attention... you'd have thought you sentenced the kid to permanent exile. He and I would both respond differently to the same punishment.

I know this thread isn't about spanking or discipline for children - but it shows how every person is different, and parenting cannot simply be a rigid form-factor approach. Similarly, I don't expect it would be easy to apply the same "form factor" to gender roles. For example - I'm not a grease-monkey - I like gears, mechanics, hydraulics, etc - but I'm just not one to enjoy crawling around hot, greasy parts. I know how to do it - just like I know how to clean a number of killed animals - but I am not going to be jumping up and down saying "let me do it!" Another one of my brothers cannot walk into a room full of tools and not take half the stuff in the room apart, and practically had wet-dreams about driving. I couldn't care less about driving - didn't get my license until after boot camp.

So, in that respect, I expect children to have a sort of "wired" gender in amongst their 'learned' genders. In the Navy - I learned how to clean house and keep it orderly... I may not necessarily enjoy doing it - but clutter and mess drives me up a wall like it never used to before my time in the Navy. I will, from time to time, go on a cleaning rampage through the apartment (much to my room-mates' confusion and possible annoyance) when I get tired of looking at the general state of disorder.

In that respect - I've "learned" a 'gender role' - if anyone is going to keep the house clean in my hypothetical marriage - it'll be me.

Which, really, I don't see that as being a 'gender role' so much as a basic part of life... but I've seen it lacking in enough people's lives to figure that it must qualify as a gender role to some extent.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 09:41 PM
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Originally posted by Aim64C
It is rather impossible for parents to not "force" their morals and views upon a child.... unless they just leave the kid to it's own devices and never interact with it (which isn't parenting).


I agree with that to an extent, but then the question becomes how dare we impose our beliefs on Storms parents?

My children weren't FORCED to play with toys they didn't want to - but were offered the options and owned a variety. On the other hand, I managed to raise an athiest and a christian, in the same household. Both with the same morals and views on a lot of issues. So its not impossible to raise children who have individual ideas and belief systems, and still teach them right and wrong.


In that respect - I've "learned" a 'gender role' - if anyone is going to keep the house clean in my hypothetical marriage - it'll be me.

Which, really, I don't see that as being a 'gender role' so much as a basic part of life... but I've seen it lacking in enough people's lives to figure that it must qualify as a gender role to some extent.


Everyone in my house cleans. NO one is exempt.

You make some really great points in the bulk of your post that I left out here, however, at least in my opinion the question is not about parenting techniques - its more about should we force societies beliefs of what a girl or boy is, down a childs throat. I think no.

The parents know what the child is, so potty training shouldn't be an issue (may I point out though that my ex did not stand to urinate like most men, and I had no problem with that) - and the child can look down and see if its a boy or a girl at some point so that shouldn't be too confusing - if they dress the child in ambiguous clothing, I dont see a problem with that either - if the child says "I want to wear a dress" no problem with that as far as I'm concerned, gender be damned.

If their goal is to prevent outside influence, I can relate.. The day I left my children on their first day of school I cried - not because I was happy about their milestone - but because I was terrified what they would influence on them.

I won't get into the "spanking" conversation, I don't think thats even remotely gender relevant - even if I did escape many in my years because I was the girl - I always thought it was BS - it was just as much punishment for me to have to sit there and watch the boys be spanked. It was their choice, as it is yours.

I don't agree with all the ways I was raised, but I respect my parents for doing what they thought was right.

In the end thats all your children need to learn. Respect.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 11:32 PM
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Originally posted by Aim64C
It is rather impossible for parents to not "force" their morals and views upon a child.... unless they just leave the kid to it's own devices and never interact with it (which isn't parenting).


I just want to make one point. IMO "moral" is the most overused - misused - and most obnoxious term in this Millennium ever since Bush took office.

There is Integrity - Self-Worth - Quality - - and a bunch of other descriptives - - with far more real validity then morals.



posted on May, 26 2011 @ 11:51 PM
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reply to post by Forevever
 



I agree with that to an extent, but then the question becomes how dare we impose our beliefs on Storms parents?


I never said we should. We are merely a bunch of adults (and children) on an internet forum discussing our views on parenting.

We can agree or disagree with Storm's parents. We can like or dislike what they are doing. At the end of the day - it's not our job to step in and tell them how to raise their kids.


If their goal is to prevent outside influence, I can relate.. The day I left my children on their first day of school I cried - not because I was happy about their milestone - but because I was terrified what they would influence on them.


This is part of life. It goes back to what another post stated a while back - a community -does- have a role in bringing up children. Just as parents interact with their children - so will the community, and to expect the child -not- to learn from the community he/she interacts with is pretty silly.

For whatever reason - I tend to get a lot of attention from kids - perhaps because I'm a quiet person and I tend to give people the time of day, in general. For a while - I used to avoid certain topics with kids because I didn't want to give them a view/opinion that their parents would disagree with. However, anymore, I simply tell them that many different people have different views, and give them my own view on something. If their parents have that big of a deal with it - they can get bent.

I look at it this way - I'm going to have kids who come back and ask all sorts of questions about other people and why some people are some way and why others are another... my answer is going to explain that people are different and that you learn more by asking people. That's part of 'growing up' - learning to respect people by asking questions and being honest.


I won't get into the "spanking" conversation, I don't think thats even remotely gender relevant - even if I did escape many in my years because I was the girl - I always thought it was BS - it was just as much punishment for me to have to sit there and watch the boys be spanked. It was their choice, as it is yours.


My point was to establish that kids are different. They are not, exactly, "blank slates." About the only way to discipline me was to spank me - my parents tried the whole grounding deal, the corner, etc. That's just not how my mind worked. My brother, however, sticking him into the corner was like a death sentence - that was one of the only ways he'd respond to discipline. Similarly - instilling morals and values in children is not going to apply uniformly, either. I'm a person with a personality geared towards serving others, in a way. Getting me to be forward about what I need and require is quite a challenge, as it's something of a taboo for me to ask someone to do something for me.

Similarly - my parents never had to worry about me running around hopped up on MDMA at raves and impregnating half a dozen classmates. They could have even kicked me out the front door and told me I wasn't allowed back in until I'd gotten laid (using protection, of course) - and I'd have spent the day building a place to sleep outside. It's just not something I care to do with someone I don't have an existing and strong relationship with. Other people, that concept is lost to them, and you may as well just put a bowl of condoms at the bottom of the staircase - because they are just not going to see it like that, for whatever reason (exactly how tied to parenting that is cannot be known at this time).

The quickest way for me to see something as being wrong is to see that it hurts or harms another person in some way. For other people - that doesn't really matter. Making another person happy isn't one of their prerogatives in life, and any moral teachings based around that concept will simply be lost to them.



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