When I was very young — maybe four or five — my aunt bought me a cowboy outfit for Christmas. I think it was a really expensive one. My mother made me put it on straight away and all I remember (there’s a photo to back this up) is crying my eyes out because I really didin’t want to wear it.
I don’t know what that meant — I didn’t grow up to be an adult male who enjoys wearing stereotypically female clothes — but I do think I must have hated being made to be something I wasn’t.
Since my earlier posting, there’ve been a lot of pretty strong posts saying that this is all about the mother. I do respect that view. Equally, if the young lad really wants to wear a princess outfit — and you’re very clear that that is his freely chosen preference — then a conversation with the mother seems appropriate.
It won’t turn him gay, any more than being made to wear a cowboy outfit turned me straight.
It feels — here in the UK, at least — that society is moving remarkably fast when it comes to gender and sexuality. Despite being gay, I’ve not generally been particularly open to the idea of gender fluidity, yet I’ve recently found myself questioning why I’m asked my gender when I fill out forms on the internet. “Why do you want to know?” I think to myself. “What difference does it make?” Sometimes it’s relevant, sometimes not.
Childhood should be about fun and fantasy — especially at Disney World. If this young man wants to dress like a princess and you can find a way to make his mother be comfortable with that, then I’m all in favour. Let him be who he wants to be at that moment.
You know, funnily enough, I bought my “ladies” bag right after I’d watched HEA. I was actually genuinely moved by the message. And when I saw that bag, I thought “I really like this — it looks good and it’s exactly what I need to carry for this trip”. The assistant in the shop — and my friend — made the whole thing so much fun and so comfortable.
Of course I’m back carrying my manly rucksack now, but it was fun while it lasted — and a nice memory of many of my trip.