My DS (age11 - almost 12) is suffering bullying from other boys because he looks (and sometimes behaves) more like a girl. He has always been like that and until recently he had been happy and made friends of noth boys and girls but lately all the boys seem to just torment him all the time and he has given up soccer (which he was good at), and wants to spend more time at home just reading and playing on his computer.
I don't see why he should change just to suit other kids, but at the same time I want him to be happy and enjoy life.
I highly reccomend youth theatre. It's an incredibly welcoming environment for boys of all types. Even if he's not into being on stage, working backstage is a great outlet too. Both my kids (even my very typical boy) just love it. Having strong social connections outside of school make lack of connections at school more tolerable. Theatre kids just seem to be more secure in their differences. If he's opposed to theatre, the arts in general tend to attract large quantities of bright and quirky kids. Both my 10 and 14-year-old have male friends that match your description and it's not a big deal at all!
Hugs to your DS and you. My own DS was a target of bullies all of 3rd grade. Like I said, he's a very typical boy but he's brainy and had the misfortune of befriending an untrustworthy child with no friends. The child turned on him and started a game of humiliating DS every chance he could. It was so painful for DS and painful for us to watch. Have you talked to the administration at school? We did and they really did a good job turning things around.
This was my now 19yo. Realistically, I can understand how he attracted the wrong kind of attention when he'd go outside for PE (in HS), arms thrown wide, spinning around in circles. Or when he decided that every Wednesday was "Free Hugs Day" - he literally made up t-shirts and offered free hugs to anyone who wanted one every Wednesday. Cool, but.... (to many kids - especially guys) weird. His Scout friends (save one - and his Dad), pretty well shunned him. I CAN say that the "spinning", hugs, general sensitivity, etc. gained him a TON of friends who were female, and consequently, a lot of girls who were eager to date him. Some were nut jobs, but some were really very nice young women.
I will agree that the arts are more accepting of such differences. He did drama, chorus and music, and also focused on his academics. And is now studying Music Comp.
Encourage him to be his own man. To find the drummer whose beat matches his and to march to it. As long as he is comfortable in his own skin, what others think won't matter.