Thursday, September 29, 2005

Musings on raising a boy

For some reason that completely escapes me, I spent all of my life prior to birth of magikboy with the solid belief that if I ever had children, they would be girls. Girls with curly red hair and smudgy freckles and an attitude that would offend people from miles away. I had wonderful tales in my head of the things we would do together. Teaching them how to use power tools to build their own tree forts, watching hours of Nova specials about ancient civilizations, writing tales about girls who run off to become pirates, and other such activities that never happened for me. I was going to give them really cool, powerful names - Like Quinn, Breva, or Morrigan. Things that just make you sound like you could open a can of whoopass. Definitly not girly "pretty" names.

For the entirety of my pregnancy, I was convinced I was having a girl. No one could tell me otherwise. I wouldn't let them tell me the ultrasound results, not because I didn't want to know, but because I already knew: it was a tiny little girl fetus kicking the crap out of me. She was already showing off, you see.

But then, when the big day finally came, and my abdomen lay severed under bright operating lights, freeing the little blob of humanness from its previous abode, the words I heard were "It's a boy!" OK, I was completely out of it between the panic attack and the drugs - what I actually heard was "Mwa-mwa-mwa-mwa-bwa." But somehow I translated that.

It took me a couple of days to wrap my head around this. What in the fucking hell am I going to do with a boy?!? This was pretty much my constant thought. Which is odd, since all of my childhood friends were boys. Most of my adult friends are boys. All of my cousins are boys. I do have a sister, but we don't talk and we haven't ever in our lives been close. But, at the same time, I think I don't know how to handle this little boy. Because I have gender envy.

Gender envy is a term I cooked up after psych 100 and being introduced to penis envy. I realized immediately what Freud was getting at, because I've had it ever since I realized that boys never had to get burned by curling irons. I really could care less about having a penis. Because Freud was wrong about the cause of what he was describing, little girls don't envy the penis, they envy getting to have fun without worrying what other people think about it.

So, I have had to spend alot of time not being jealous of magikboy because he gets to be a boy. It sounds really harsh, but it's the truth. And I've had to pay attention to what I do with him, because I'd decided to conciously raise him to be aware of the awesome priveleges that he has, simply because he was gifted with the Y chromosome and his parents pasty complexions. But I don't want to give him a guilt complex. I just want him to realize that not everyone will get the same treatment that he does, and that it isn't fair that the world works this way.

Raising a boy who understands that women are human is the best way to get back.

Oh and was that dress code at I blame the patriarchy real? Makeup my ass. Skirts are required at some point? Unf--ing believable in 2005.
Oh yeah. That was completely real. I copied it out of our employee handbook.
I think that your boy will grow up to be a fine young man.

I can't believe that you got fired for not shaving.

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