Monday, October 26, 2009

Get this...

I actually answered the phone when my sister called yesterday afternoon and we talked for quite awhile.  Among other things, I found out she volunteers as a grandmother or something to help kids in schools.  (I'm in awe of her volunteerism.)  She tutors kids who are having troubles in class - mostly first and second graders.

She told me about one kid she had last year - a resistant, somewhat rebellious little first grader.  My sister won him over of course and they became friends.  He confided in her that he preferred to play with girls rather than boys, and liked their games better and stuff like that.  It was a huge secret she had to promise to keep.  My sister encouraged him to be himself and all of that, but she wasn't able to do more. 
My question is, how does a kid in first grade even know or care about this stuff?  Why would that be a big deal at his age?  When I was in first grade I would never have thought about that stuff.  Who is telling kids at that age they are queer?

My sister confided in the director in charge of volunteers concerning the young boy - he asked how she handled it and then he told her he was gay too. 


  1. +JMJ+

    Terry, when one of my little brothers was in kindergarten, he started watching Barney videos and pretending he was one of the children. He greatly preferred to make believe he was one of the little girls. This was no big deal to anyone but his father (my step-father), who immediately feared that his son was showing "tendencies." Let's just say that he handled that fear very badly.

    With all our hindsight now, it's hard to see how everything got blown out of proportion, but it did. Two years ago, when he was ten, my brother wrote a letter to our mother, the gist of which was: "I'm sorry, but I really like girls' stuff more than boys' stuff. I love you."

  2. Anonymous10:23 AM

    Er, I always preferred the company of males to females. Still do, in fact.
    I HATED playing with girls when I was little. So much drama, whining, playing dumb stuff. If you had asked me, I might have said, "It's a secret, but I like playing with boys." Meaning, "Don't tell them, but the girls in the neighborhood suck."
    I was so glad to have a brother close to my age, a male cousin close to my age, and lots of boys in the neighborhood.

    Even today, I prefer the company of my husband to the company of pretty much every other human being on the planet.

    -Cathy W.

  3. A young boy who is in a drawing program where our eldest daughter teaches a sewing class would always stick his head in the door of her class on the way to the snack from from the arts room. Week after week he would pop his head in and smile with eyes taking in everything and if possible would step in to touch fabric or watch the needle whir in the machine. He would stay there, skipping snack even until pulled away by his arts leader.

    Then for a few weeks daughter noticed the boy walking by the room and not looking in at all. She called out "Hi Name" and he walked past as if not hearing. After a moment he returned to say, "Sorry miss. I can't watch any more." "Oh, said our daughter, why is that?" "My mom says sewing is for girls." That's when daughter realized the for the past several weeks as with that same night the boy had been wearing the local triple A, child sizes, hockey jersey.

    The boy likes sewing. That's doesn't mean he's less a man nor does it ipso facto mean he is gay. He may be a gifted fabric or fashion designer or maybe just a male who happens to enjoy colour and design. We live in a stupid, stupid world or more correctly we live in a fallen world under the influence of the evil one who would take every good and perfect gift that comes to us from the Father of heavenly lights with whom there is no shadow of turning in order to crush or pervert those gifts.

  4. Good comments everyone, thanks.

  5. +JMJ+

    Cathy W's comment reminds me that I also preferred boys' toys and games when I was younger. I wouldn't say I grew "out" of it as much as I learned to expand my interests.

    Didn't C.S. Lewis say something of that sort, when talking about still enjoying fairy tales as a middle aged don?

  6. Growing up in a neighborhood where I was the only girl in my age group, I always hung out with boys. I enjoyed playing kick ball, softwall, cops and robbers, cowbows and indians. On those occasions when I played with girls, I found playing with dolls and staging tea parties incredibly dull.

    However, I've never been attracted to women and I wear dresses and lipstick!

    Kids these days are exposed to gender identiy and sexuality "issues" at an obscenely early age. We can thank the folks who think speaking openly about sexuality means you tell kids about sex and gender roles as soon as they are old enough to speak.

    Is there a point where this openness stopped letting people develop naturally? Does it insist on each person defining their sexuality as soon as possible? It's like the feeling of failure people may experience when they don't pick their college major right away. Now, you need to define your sexuality by the age of 5 before someone picks it for you.

  7. Cath - I'm upset about those who try to define a 5 year old kid's sexuality for them - like an overly compassionate school volunteer or a school counsellor who decide the kid that plays with girls and likes to dress up dolls must be gay.

  8. Like some of the commenters, I grew up liking boy things. I requested a toy Jeep for one of my early the horror of my aunt. I worked in a typically male field and prefer male company, never had a tea party. Now that I'm a homeschooling mom, I do find it awkward at times to be surrounded by (almost) exclusively women when I usually had been the only woman in my work group.

    But, along the lines of gender and schools and interfering with childhood innocence, Cathy heard about the HUGE concerns I had when my daughter, who attends a special class for speech development with the local school district, came home with a note that they would be starting a five week unit on "families." Of course, my mind was racing with all sorts of horrible scenarios (what does "families" have to do with speech development?). I had heard very troubling things about another nearby district and their awful curriculum that starts in pre-K, so I was fully prepared to pull my daughter out. Fortunately, after due diligence in looking through the curriculum, talking with the teacher, researching the texts (every single book!) used online, etc., this particular program seemed tame and totally unobjectionable. Surprise, surprise!! But, it is really unbelievable that many curricula start teaching alternative lifestyles, sex ed lite, etc., in pre-K (which is what my daughter is in) and many parents have no idea, don't care or support it. Scary world.

  9. Monica - I think it is a form of institutional child abuse to teach kids this kind of stuff - pre-K is ridiculous!

  10. Cathy said - I wear dresses and lipstick!

    Is that when you're not in ninja uniform?

  11. Re: Saintos' remark about sewing. My great-grandfather was a tailor with his own shop. He fathered about 10 children (some died in infancy so I can't remember the exact number.) When my great-gran died he married again to a younger woman. I'd say he was one virile guy, sewing needle and all !!

  12. +JMJ+

    Terry, on a book 'blog I'd have trouble finding now, I read a comment by an openly homosexual man (one of the 'blog's regular readers) who was reacting to a certain author's belief that her son had been born gay. According to that author, she had noticed that he was unusually neat, sensitive and artistic for a little boy, and believed even before he started school that he was gay. (As a teenager, the boy eventually came out to his parents. A self-fulfilling prophecy?)

    Anyway, this reader/commenter really put off by the author's assumption. He insisted that "gayness" has nothing to do with mannerisms, habits, or interests, but was all about sex. I remember that whenever I hear of other parents with children too young for sex, already worried that their children are homosexual.

  13. Enbrethiliel - That is very interesting - thanks.

  14. Larry: Nah, I still wear that in ninja uniform!


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