Two recent stories show parents supporting their gender nonconforming children in pretty awesome ways. One will infuriate you with the bias the mom and her child had to face; both will inspire you with the strength of the moms.
First, Katie Vyktoriah wrote at HuffPo about “What Happened When My Son Wore A Pink Headband To Walmart.” It wasn’t good — and it shows just how deeply some people still feel about gender expectations. [Update: It seems there is some question about the validity of the author’s account and about her mental health. I do not have any further facts or opinions on this myself. I will say, however, that we should base our decisions on facts related to the incident (e.g., WalMart security tapes). Even if Vyktoriah has mental health issues, that doesn’t necessarily mean her story is untrue. Mental health issues cover such a wide range of concerns, it is hard to say (as an outside observer) if they would impact her credibility in recounting her tale.]
After that, go refresh yourself by reading “We Think He Might Be a Boy,” by Su Penn, about her child’s journey to find a place on the gender spectrum, and her thoughts on how to provide support. (On a side note: The piece appeared at Friends Journal, a Quaker publication — but I was alerted to it by a tweet from Rabbi Ruth Adar. I just love interdenominational bridge building.)