Gender Differences Between Effeminate Boys And Transgender Children

1453 Words Aug 14th, 2015 6 Pages
At a camp for gender-variant children, two young boys, perhaps six or seven years old, tromp through the woods. They are wearing pink dresses and sporting long tresses, and are engrossed in the joy of their freedom. They would easily be mistaken for little girls anywhere else. At the camp, though, they can be who they are and nobody makes any assumptions (Morris). Unfortunately, the rest of the world isn 't so understanding of boys who like dresses. Boys in our culture are expected to eschew all things pink, soft, or feminine. If they don 't, the consequences can be dire. Boys who act in ways we label as 'feminine ' encounter much more harassment and cruelty than girls who act 'masculine '. This double standard is a result of sexism, and results in these boys being bullied and ostracized. Careful analysis requires that we make the distinction between effeminate boys and transgender children. Transgender people feel that they belong in one gender but live in the body of the other gender. Effeminate boys, sometimes called gender-nonconforming or gender-creative, “...identify as boys but wear tiaras and tote unicorn backpacks” (Padawer). The ambiguity of their gender expression makes it even more difficult for effeminate boys to find a place to fit in. “Even transgender people preserve the traditional binary gender division: born in one and belonging in the other. But the parents of boys in that middle space argue that gender is a spectrum rather than two opposing…
Open Document