Diamond to About to turn into a Witch

By Diamond | Oct 27, 2016

Dear Diamond,

Our six-year old son has decided that he wants to wear a girl costume again for Halloween. This will be the third year in a row. My husband is about to lose his mind on this. At four, it was bad enough. He wore a princess dress and a crown. Last year he was Elsa from Frozen. This year he wants to be a girl cheerleader. My husband is beside himself. So far he is only making comments to me, but I can see that he’s about to blow. I keep trying to squelch his comments before our son hears him. I keep telling him to shush. He wonders if our son is going to turn out to be gay, a transvestite or a sissy.

Our son is having fun with his costume and he’s already wearing it around the house. He’s jumping around doing cheers and having a blast. The only one who seemed really terrified about costumes this Halloween is my husband. I tell him that it’s normal to do this. But my husband is afraid that our son will get used to this and start dressing like a girl, like it’s a permanent thing.

How can I calm down my husband? He seems embarrassed for our son.

-About-to-turn-into-a-Witch

 

Dear About-to-turn-into-a-Witch,

Halloween is a night for people to dress up and be somebody or something that we're not. It’s fun and it’s a time to be imaginative and free from the usual inhibitions. The more of a big deal your husband makes of this, the more your little son will think he’s weird and that there’s something wrong with him. Your son is a little kid. Isn’t it important for him to be his unique, imaginative and natural self without feeling ashamed of it?

Your husband is puzzled about your child’s behavior and may be wondering if wearing these costumes might mean that your son is gay or a transvestite. He may be having concerns and fears for your son’s safety even though your son could spend his youth in a football uniform and be gay. It’s there or it isn’t.

Most likely this is a stage so just let him have his fun on Halloween and not read too much into this.

The only reason that boys don’t wear dresses is because our culture says “boys don’t wear dresses.” In other cultures they do. There are kilts, caftans, veshti, sarongs, tunics, cassocks, robes and loads more. Once upon a time “women didn’t wear pants,” and it was a VERY big deal when they started to wear pantsuits.

HOWEVER, it’s a challenge for parents when their child appears to be taking on gender roles that are considered outside the cultural norms. Your son is giving you the opportunity to discuss this by his choice of costumes; take advantage of that as these opportunities can come few and far between.

Some children know clearly at a young age that their gender identity is different than what their bodies and the culture is telling them. The general rule from therapists is that if a child claims a cross gender identity at a young age, in a manner that is insistent, consistent and persistent, there is a good chance they may be transgender, and should see an experienced gender therapist. There is tremendous risk to the child if they express this and are shut down and stifled by the parents. Symptoms can often be depression and withdrawal.

Why not work on your own levels of tolerance and acceptance of other people for now? If it turns out that your son is trying to figure it out, what kind of message are you sending him? That you won't love him if he’s different? Don’t you want to send him the message that you will love him no matter what?

So focus on helping your son to be a good person. A kid who grows up without gender stereotypes will grow up more comfortable with who he is and happier in the long run and not at odds with himself. We need to celebrate diversity and encourage creativity instead of teaching how to judge others. Diamond would like to thank Grace Stevens, author of “No! Maybe? Yes! Living My Truth,” for her input on this.

With grace and peace,

Diamond

 

Event

Men and women, guys and girls, have written to Dear Diamond because they want to meet someone. Each week Diamond will post an event that’s appropriate for single folks. Not exclusively for singles, but very appropriate.

Just get out there and mingle, folks. You just never know who will be there.

“Scare Me 5K” in Rockland, Sat., Oct. 29, Eclipse Restaurant. Part of the Go! Malawi holiday 5K series. Costumes encouraged. Kids’ fun run starts 9:30 a.m. 5K starts 10 a.m. Register at active.com.

Reader responses:

Dear Diamond,

I just read the article in the Oct 20th paper where the woman said she uses a power wheelchair and cannot leave her house. She asked for ways to get money so she could make home changes so she could go out.

It is an unsafe thing. If there is a fire she would be trapped!!!!!!!!!!! I used to work at a pediatric hospital and we would refer parents to their local Elks, Rotary Clubs, and the like. Also many lumber companies would donate material and their workers to do the job such as widen the doors, build a deck with a ramp things like that. I do not know but I would think the lumber company could deduct all, or a good part of the cost, on their business taxes. Sometimes even a call to a church will get the ball rolling.

I know its not my business but it worries me. Could you maybe add a paragraph in one of your articles or, if you know the address drop her a line?

Thank you for reading this.

- Reader

Advice appearing in Dear Diamond is for entertainment only and does not reflect the views of Courier Publications or its editorial boards. This column is not intended to replace the services of medical, financial or legal professionals.

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Snail mail: 91 Camden St., Suite 403, Rockland, ME 04841

Email: deardiamond@courierpublicationsllc.com

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