I haven't made it to pride since I had a toddler, toddlers don't ask half as many questions as 4 or 7 year olds. Today a discussion about the pride festivities brought up a whole lot about civil rights.
What have been your experiences?
For example, last night we were at an outdoor Pride concert, and there was a visibly transgendered person in one of the groups. We have talked about this before - she even had a trans day care provider in preschool - but she wanted to know why this person looked like a girl but had a deep voice. After I explained that some people can be born into a girl's body but inside, feel like they are a boy and then decide to be one (and vice versa) she looked at me with surprise in her voice and said, "You can DECIDE to be a boy or a girl???" Believe me, we have discussed this quite a bit before, but for some reason, it sunk in in a new way. Then, they introduced the gay men's chorus, and she said, "Mom, what's 'gay'?" I was hoping no one was listening, and thinking what kind of self-hating lesbian moms this child has! But what I realized is, at six, she needs a different explanation than she needed at 3 or 4 or 5, and that kids need information repeated, even if we think they get it.
P.S. You mentioned civil rights, and we talk about that in our house pretty much as the ability for her moms to get married someday. She definitely gets the injustice of that.
On embarassing moments at pride, thanks for that heads up too (although, I would have been plenty embarassed if anyone outside my family had heard my kids say they didn't know what gay meant). I was thinking of alcohol and nudity, I seem to recall a lot of that from my younger days, but I think mine are still in a place where they don't realize public nudity is anything out of the ordinary. I even wonder if they will notice transfolk. They don't seem to get that girls follow a different set of rules in their own age group. My daighter seems to have caught on somewhat, as she has noticed that if she keeps her hair short she can be mistaken for a boy, but my son is oblivious. No matter how many times I say it, he doesn't seem to understand that long hair makes people think he's a girl, tho he even calls everyone with long hair "she." But I also think he doesn't care. He never corrects anyone. His soccer coach last year she'd him all year. I tried to correct but it never made it through.
I seem to be getting lost. Sleepy typing does no one any favors.
We also have this discussion almost every year. Still.
I'm a queer / trans-activist / poly / pagan / (dis)abled / crazy / crunchy partner to fsonj; we're mamas to our unschooled/freeskooled 10yo, and co-breastfeed our sprightly toddler born Nov '10! (Ask me about how to supplement at the breast!)
As for not knowing what it means to be gay, even in gay headed household, I think that is pretty normal. I mean, how often does it come up at the breakfast table? Just like we keep explaining what a twin is to the twins.
Can't wait for the parade tomorrow! Always fun.
Me. With 1 spouse, 4 kids, 16 chickens, 74 matchbox cars, 968,562+ legos, a dishwasher waiting to be emptied, a washing machine waiting to be filled and a lost cup of tea in the house.
I'm excited too, ours in next week and we're making shirts for it tonight.