Saddleback College Early Childhood and Thoughts about Gender Discussion.
Share some of your earliest thoughts of what it meant to be a boy or a girl. Connect some content and language from the power point.
For example, I had conflicting messages about what it meant to be a girl. I was very tall, and had short, unruly hair. My mother kept it short because I wouldn’t sit still to let her cut it. Often, my sister and I were dressed in matching, home-made dresses and shiny “Mary-Jane” shoes, but other times, I dressed in playclothes- shorts or slacks, a t-shirt and tennies. I have several memories of being called a boy! Also, my sister’s room colors were pink and red. Mine were yellow and lime green. Did this mean I was “boyish”? Hmmm. “No”, my mom said, “It wasn’t blue!” Growing up in the 60’s, there was the beginnings of freedom in terms of how people dressed. I mean, women were burning their bras! (I remember my parents being shocked at this!) And, I had no brothers, so my father “made do” (never his words or sentiment) with having girls. I think I was brought up like a big brother. Or, at least, I didn’t have a big brother to compare how my parents treated us. And, my dad always said, “you can be whatever you want when you grow up”. I don’t think my grandpa ever said that to my mom! So, what it meant to me, to be a girl, was to be myself- do my best- stand up for others (I was always the tallest of my friends), and so on. Later, in my teens, I had trouble reconciling my feelings of identity with what I saw on the cover of Seventeen magazine. I turned away from trying to be ultra-feminine… until my first boyfriend! Only then did I come into my own as feeling feminine. Before that, I was just Kris.