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Old Sep 30th, 2010, 14:06 PM   1
MummyJen
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Raising a child gender neutral, would you?


I was reading an article in this weeks Grazia magazine (UK) and there did a story with a lady who is raising her child as gender neutral. The child is 18 months old and she has only told close family and friends (mainly people who have changed the baby's nappy) what gender the child is. She has given the child a double gender name and dresses the child in both boys and girls clothing. She lets the child play with whatever toys it wants too. When people ask her what gender her child is she says she doesn't want to say. She says that she is doing this as she doesn't what her child restricted to the sterotypes that each gender bring e.g girls have pink rooms and play with dolls while boys have blue rooms and play with toy trucks. She also wants her child to be able to do whatever it wants and not restricted because of gender. A expect said that there is no such thing as being gender netural and that the child is more and likely going to have an odd sense of idenity as it grows older. However they said that children should be pushed to be allowed to do what they want, just not this way. The mother called it a social experiment, not experimenting with the child but society.

What are your views?

I think it is very over the top and completely the wrong was to go about this type of thing. I will allow my child to play with whatever toy he/she wants to and to wear whatever he/she chooses. Whatever career baby bean whats to go into I will support that. That said if I have a girl or a boy I will dress them appropritely and colour code things. However if I had a boy and he wanted to play with a doll then I would let him. It is all about learning and developing. However I think she is taking it too far. I actually feel a bit sorry for the child as she is obviously (even though she says that she is not) using her child as a gunina pig for her own experiment.



 
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Old Sep 30th, 2010, 14:10 PM   2
Cheryl xx
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I think it may be confusing for the child as it gets older. I do agree with letting children express themselves and play with whichever toy they like. However i think this is over the top xx



 
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Old Sep 30th, 2010, 14:14 PM   3
stephwiggy
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Oooh interesting but not for me. I'm quite chilled about my son he wanted a baby n buggy for his bithday when he was 2 so that's what he got, and he loved it, I got some odd comments but he was happy so I was happy.



 
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Old Sep 30th, 2010, 14:23 PM   4
amym
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I'm not keen - as a proud feminist I believe that gender is essential to our identities - not that we should restrict girls to pink and boys to blue, or job roles etc, but how can you grow to be a proud woman if you can't be a proud girl?



 
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Old Sep 30th, 2010, 15:08 PM   5
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I think its ridiculous, not to mention unethical to experiment with a child in that way. (She can claim its a "societal" experiment, but there is ONE person who will be affected the most, her child.) I believe gender is a very important part of a person's identity.

As for my own kids--we've never dressed them in a gender neutral way (daughter may wear blue, but you can certainly tell she's a girl!) but they have been free to play with and participate in the activities that appeal to them. I bought dolls for my son and basketballs for my daughter, etc. Mom & Dad both clean & cook, fix things, work in the yard...both DH and I have had times when we were a SAH parent and times when we worked outside the home.

I have seen clearly with my children there are some innate differences. It's amazing seeing my son have a male teacher at school for the first time this year how differently he reacts and relates there. They've both been encouraged to have friends from each gender, but they definitely identify with friends of their same gender right now. They also identify strongly with their same-gendered grandparents.



 
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Old Sep 30th, 2010, 15:09 PM   6
sequeena
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Completely confusing and unfair to the child



 
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Old Sep 30th, 2010, 15:15 PM   7
shocker
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I read this article and was wondering if anyone would start a thread on it, I think it's ridiculous! And also incredibly cruel and confusing to treat a child as some 'experiment' I have two friends who are raising gender neutral children and I've seen first hand how it's affected them, they also won't let the children play with toys that aren't made from naturally occuring resources (eg only wooden toys and gifts that don't agree with this ethos are given back) they also raised the youngest without nappies. It's total madness!



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Old Sep 30th, 2010, 16:11 PM   8
emmalouise079
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shocker View Post
I read this article and was wondering if anyone would start a thread on it, I think it's ridiculous! And also incredibly cruel and confusing to treat a child as some 'experiment' I have two friends who are raising gender neutral children and I've seen first hand how it's affected them, they also won't let the children play with toys that aren't made from naturally occuring resources (eg only wooden toys and gifts that don't agree with this ethos are given back) they also raised the youngest without nappies. It's total madness!
How on earth do you raise a baby without some form of nappy?! :S



 
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Old Sep 30th, 2010, 16:15 PM   9
Soos
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weird and cruel. This women is lost in her imaginary theories, there is something wrong with her imo...



 
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Old Sep 30th, 2010, 16:43 PM   10
kiwimama
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emmalouise079 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by shocker View Post
I read this article and was wondering if anyone would start a thread on it, I think it's ridiculous! And also incredibly cruel and confusing to treat a child as some 'experiment' I have two friends who are raising gender neutral children and I've seen first hand how it's affected them, they also won't let the children play with toys that aren't made from naturally occuring resources (eg only wooden toys and gifts that don't agree with this ethos are given back) they also raised the youngest without nappies. It's total madness!
How on earth do you raise a baby without some form of nappy?! :S
It's called elimination communication and I wouldn't call it madness. It's actually a very good way to bond with your baby. All babies show some sort of sign before they wee or poo, once you know what your babys signs are you can take them to the toilet and hold them over it.



 
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