Sunday, February 17, 2008

Sticks, Stones and Dead Boys Bones

I love Ben's videos. This one is a little long, but if you hang on, Jake comes in the background and annoys him- welcome to my world.

And it is the reason why I am so afraid for him. After hearing about the boy who hung himself, Jeanine turned to me, looked at Ben and said, Well... we're doing okay, aren't we?

After he taped the video, he came running downstairs with lipstick and asked me to put it on.

No, thank you. Once a year, that's it for me.

C'mon, Mom, just put some on...

I couldn't write about Lawrence King's murder until yesterday. I still can't really touch on my own fears for my son.

When Ben was in pre-school, he wanted to dress up as Blossom for Halloween. Blossom was the head Power Puff girl. He loved her. I bought the costume.

Then I sat him down and said, Some people might not understand why a boy would want to be Blossom.

He didn't care. Blossom was his favorite character.

I remember shrugging and saying, I think you look great. But, I want you to know, someone might tease you about it.

Blossom was one tough chick.

He doesn't dress in pink anymore, or wear heels or make up, like Lawrence King. His budding sexuality is being expressed towards girls, for the time being.

And he is constantly anxious.

I don't have to tell him it's not safe. He knows.

He also loves posting on YouTube. He is a ham, at heart and incredibly creative. He has always been too afraid to join a theater club, but has a new outlet for his desire to be a star.

His friends have his address.

All I can say is it was a lot easier to walk him around as Blossom on Halloween night, armed with a firm look to all the people who opened the door to my boy dressed in pink.

Sticks and stones
may break my bones
but words will never hurt me

Unfortunately, now kids are carrying guns.

And we're left to bury the dead boys bones.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, my little boy loves to wear a certain pink leotard and tutu from the dress up drawer. The other day he wanted to wear a dress out to dinner. He is 4. I found a compromise (he was a superhero) and we dodged the wrathful stares of of the backwards town of mine. Sigh. I do wonder what will happen when he gets older.
BTW, your boys seem totally cute to me!

11:19 AM  
Blogger Christy said...

Wow. How do you get over their crippling shyness?

My 2 y/o was watching it with me. When Jake entered, she started making faces too. Tell him he has won the heart of a 2y/o little girl. She said, "He's funny. I like that."

In all seriousness though, what can we do to change the way people look at these handsome boys? WHY is it not acceptable for them to wear dresses and pink costumes in public? WHY can't they be the people that they want to be? HOW do we change it?

(And for the record, there is nothing much cuter than Kamrin's little boy in a pink tutu. He's a precious little thing!)

11:54 AM  
Anonymous Laura said...

I think the fact that you can talk openly with him and let him know that its ok to express himself but not all people will understand is a HUGE help to him.

He has a fantastic support system.

You are preparing him and at least he knows that he is his home at least.

12:53 PM  
Blogger Ms. Moon said...

Isn't it interesting that little girls can dress as boys and it's not only perfectly acceptable, but no one even notices? I bought my daughter's t-shirts in the boys' department for years. She loved the striped ones and they didn't make them for girls. Me? I wear men's britches all the time. They fit me better than women's. And no one thinks twice about that.
But let a boy or a man put on a woman's garment and all hell breaks loose. This says a lot about our culture and its fear of male homosexuality and we could write VOLUMNS on that one.
I'm proud of your boy and the way you're raising him.

6:50 PM  
Blogger Sue J said...

While it is true that woman can wear men's Levis and wear men's t-shirts and that's acceptable in society, it's still not socially acceptably to take it farther than that. Plenty of women have been victims of violence for identifying , living, and dressing as male. Brandon Teena, for one.

Homophobia is an equal opportunity disease.

9:38 AM  
Anonymous donald said...

i know his support system and know that all of you are strong and let him know that there are dangers out there. keep up the good work. had to laugh when jake showed up, soooooooo typical of him!!

ben is getting too good at the lipsynking thing! none of us will stand a chance at the annual christmas party once he is allow to come!!

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10:29 PM  

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