Gender Nonconforming

1320 Words6 Pages
What is gender nonconforming? Is it the same thing as being transgender? The answer is no. According to GLAAD (2017), gender nonconforming and transgender are umbrella terms, therefore, gender nonconforming people do not always identify themselves as transgender and not all transgender people are gender nonconforming. Gender nonconforming is a term used to describe people whose behavior and/or appearance is different from prevailing expectations of masculinity and femininity (GLAAD, 2017). Transgender is a term for people whose gender expression and gender identity are different than the gender they were assigned at birth (GLAAD, 2017).
Gender is used to refer to “the attitudes, feelings, and behaviors that a given culture associates with
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Gender nonconforming boys are expected to dress and appear in a way that fits their gender role (Toomey et al., 2010). For example, boys are supposed to dress in masculine clothes, such as pants and basketball shorts and should have short hairstyles (P.P., 2017). In a study conducted by Blakemore (2003), researchers found that boys who dressed in girls’ clothing were perceived as very negative. Researchers also found that boys who violated the gender role of physical appearance, for example, clothing or hairstyle, would be perceived more negatively than girls. Physical appearance is one of the most key factors in building relationships, therefore, people who are perceived as unusual from their assigned gender role have a harder time building those relationships (Adler, Kless & Adler, 1992). Therefore, students who are perceived as out of the ordinary can lead to students being victimized in school (Pacer Centers Teens Against Bullying, 2017).
In a school setting, appearance and grooming is also a key factor in being popular (Adler et al., 1992). According to Merriam-Webster’s (2017), popular is defined as “the state of being liked, enjoyed, accepted, or done by many people”. In school, the appearance of being popular for boys includes the gender roles of wearing high end authentic sports apparel like jerseys and shoes (Adler et al., 1992). The term unpopular is defined as not being liked nor
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