My Son Chooses to Be Alice (in Wonderland)

My Halloween post is up, but not here, at TheAtlantic.com. 

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“My son C.J. is going to be Alice, of Alice In Wonderland, for Halloween. More specifically, he will be Tim Burton’s Alice because, at nearly seven years old, he’s starting to outgrow his infatuation with the leading ladies of Disney.

While Disney represents the sweet innocence and make-believe aspects of early life, my son—even though he’s only in first grade—has found comfort and a sense of camaraderie in the dark, quirky fantasy worlds created by Tim Burton. They are worlds where being different is often celebrated. My son is different. He wants to be celebrated.”

Click here to read the full post.

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PSPride_logo_footer_transNext up on my appearance schedule is Palm Springs Pride.  It’s this weekend.  Who’s going?  I’ll be in the Author’s Village on Sunday, November 3, at 1 p.m., for a meet and greet and to sign books.

It’s my first Palm Springs Pride and only my second pride ever….so stop by and make me feel welcome.  Please.

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About raisingmyrainbow

RaisingMyRainbow.com is a blog about the adventures in raising a fabulous, gender creative son.
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17 Responses to My Son Chooses to Be Alice (in Wonderland)

  1. Bev says:

    Your son is adorable. And I admire that you support him in his choices.

  2. your son is amazing and reading your posts make me smile!!! I can only hope he will keep his amazing outlook, and the kids he grows up with accept him just as he is, wonderful!!

  3. such a good example of a good parent !! keep up the good work and i admire your strength

  4. I absolutely love reading your blog. I found your blog after researching information about the topic of boys and dolls, as I too have a son (he’s 4 years old) who loves to dress up and play with Monster High, Disney Princess and Barbies.

    Although our family and friends are more than supportive of our son’s choice of play, we still struggle with the negative attention received while in public. We have been fortunate to not experience more than laughs and judgmental stares.

    I too write a blog (mostly crafts) and have discussed on a few occasions our son’s gender non-conformity. As time passes, we understand and learn so much more about our handsome princess (as I like to call him). I also thank you and your blog for learning so much more about gender non-conformity. It has helped me to approach this experience with strength and understanding.

  5. Mark says:

    I could read all these comments and still be as overly dumbstruck by ALL the arguments presented. Personally, Prefer a much more logical take on it all, both sides. so here it goes:

    1) I’m a follower of Lori’s blog, I’ll state this at the start, and even if she IS making this all up to make a book buck, then she’s sure picked an odd way to do it. therefore, I can only conclude that she is really messed up, which I don’t believe, or she has been thrust into a situation that she didn’t ever see coming, and is logically, and humanely working through it The only way she knows how. Money didn’t stop Jim Baker, Jimmy Swaggert or even Dr. Billy Graham. Money and purity, rather NO money and purity is a falsehood we believe.

    2) I am a therapist, and many of my clients are stressed over gender bending behaviors. The problem is not their desire to act out the other sex, but society’s unbending criticism of their desire to do so. trust me. There are alot of people who just want to do what they want to do, but have been trained early on that “somebody” will make fun of them, and the need to be accepted takes much more precedence over what they want.

    3) children know fully well, by the time maybe at most 3, what they are attracted too, where their affinity, and maybe even sexuality lies. probably not in adult terms but certainly preferences for types of clothing, colors, behaviors etc. They just don’t know how to express it all that well. This is hard for the adult to grasp, because we’ve been taught by the courts that children don’t know anything, but I assure you that that is FAR from the truth.

    4) what we call gender bending today is not what it was called in years past. Fashion dictated what men wore, what women wore, and that fashion came from the royal courts. Men have not always worn trousers and girls only skirts. Think about it. the association with girls and skirts is strictly a masculine perspective to gain sexual, and easy sexual, access to women.

    Pants on the other hand, as we know them today, we’re only designed to protect the thighs of the wearer from chafing from horseback, and designed at approximately the SAME time as the domestication of the horse in quantity. Men generally wore short skirts for freedom of movement in fighting etc, women wore longer garb for modesty. Maybe for the sun too, I don’t know.

    5) Trousers for women were only adopted avant garde in the 1920’s by women, and those who did, perhaps like a skirt for men today, were looked at as deviants. That was not true of course, but was the fashion.

    6) clothing, specifically, was designed for one purpose only. Do NOT forget this fact, Do forget about the bible in this this. It was made to warm the physical body in cold environmental conditions, to make the body cooler in warmer conditions, and overall to provide in some way modesty from full exposure. No wonder Roman soldiers wore skirts!

    It was made to cover the genitals. And perform it’s duty for bodily comfort. Ala- our idea of the ubiquitous cave person wearing unisex jump-tunics.

    7) over time, that clothing became more or less associated with men or women by fashion decree. That of course changed lots of times over the years, and in its present form I would consider it its most rigid when identified with gender. My gosh. witness the lace (very expensive stuff in the 1600’s) worn by men to attract the ladies. Dude, he’s got alot of cash! Kinda like my Ferrari today, the one in my fantasy.

    8) whereas alot of makeup was worn by men in said period, I would posit that this has been more attributed to women. Why? I suspect sexual competition for safety and security at THAT time. Men are perhaps arguably more visual. So it stands to reason, the prettier I become, then the better chance I have of snagging such lacy dude. So makeup becomes more of a lady thing to outdo the other ladies. Naturally they are of course beauties. But a little rouge here and there, a curl in the hair just make a difference. The fellows were doing their fair share of makeup too, but not the same class as the girls. especially for the effort involved.

    9) Now in this culture, men are not to do that. why? I really have no idea, except I’ve been on this planet a long enough time, and I saw TV in its early years. I saw the original Marlboro man and to be honest have modeled my life after him for good and bad. So I do understand the power of media. After all, Rock Hudson could make grown women weep with ecstasy, but then who knew, he was homosexual as all get out, despite what Hollywood WANTED you to believe. Wonder how many husbands were left in the 50’s and 60’s because they weren’t MANLY enough like Rock? LOL!

    10) A woman today has much more freedom to be all girl, AND partly man-like. we like those attributes. We’ve been taught we like those attributes.

    But a male who even dares to tread outside this narrow little box that WE’VE told him he HAS to stay in to be a manly-man, worthy of our attention and respect, is ostracized by both men and women, boys and girls. sorry. I call it what it is. A crock, and a dangerous one at that. But sleep tight small minds, you kept America pure and strong.

    10) Gosh, I think I could write a book on this, and perhaps I will. But bottom line is that the human body, both male and female have been adorned by their owners for a VERY long time. There is NOTHING inherent about anything that is male or female. In fact, most of what we call girly things today were, to be honest, stolen by women for theior own use, but actually designed for the use of men. Only. Nature of th patriachic beast, Nailpolish, clothing, jewelry, makeup. Yep Made by and for men. Royal men to be sure, but men nonetheless. Then taken over by women, which I could care less. BUT. To now ascribe the use of anything female BY a man to be immoral, wrong, depraved, perverted, sick bad evil or crazy is a delirium of a sick society. Remember. Just because I am a well functioning member of a sick and crazy society does NOT mean I am sane.

    To wrap up. Make all the arguments you want. religious, cultural, personal. Whatever. A boy in skirt, a kickass girl ballplayer or welder does NOT gender make. For pete’s sake, is s/he a good person? Does s/he lie and steal? Does s/he make me a better friend?

    We have got such seriously serious problems in this world today. I hardly think a boy or a man in in a-line and pumps, or an empire waist, or Alice in wonderland ala Tim Burton, or a girl who wants to emulate a roman warrior even worthy of our concern. For heaven’s sake, let people like what they like. They don’t harm you. why do you care? really. Or is your life and grasp on sanity so fragile that you set yourself up as the Pontius Pilate of today. If so, maybe you really need to to look at that a bit closer.

    BTW Hate, absolutely hate this new WordPress format!

    • Mark says:

      This post of mine was originally posted over at the Atlantic site, so does not mean the comments here. For whatever reason I simply cannot figure out how to post there. Oh well.

  6. Tori says:

    Girl, your story is my story!!! This year my little rainbow was Dorothy from The WIzard Of Oz, even though I really thought it was going to be Belle or Sofia The First!! We have a wardrobe of all the Disney Princess dresses, wigs & shoes, so I really thought that he was going to either choose to be Belle from Beauty & the Beast since just two weeks ago we were at the Disney store buying that dress as a reward for good grades & conduct during his first quarter of Kindergarten. Personally, I think he was just smart enough to realize that by asking to be Dorothy he would be able to attain a fabulous new dress to add to our growing dress up collection (which now takes up a third of my walk in closet)!
    Hugs to you & your family for helping families like mine!! .

  7. I can’t comment over there – the comments are too painful for me. It makes me realize how insular my little blog is. I have to admit, I was both surprised and somewhat relieved when my son declared that he wanted us all to dress up like characters out of a haunted house and that he’d be a vampire. I think plenty of our friends and the folks at school were a bit surprised, too!

    Having read your book and following your blog, it’s beautiful to watch your journey and your family’s growth. Thank you for sharing (despite the trolls!) – I can only hope that the trail we are blazing will make it even easier on the next generation!

  8. Becca says:

    This is probably an old article that many have seen before, but I liked it and thought this was the perfect place to share it. Enjoy! http://offbeatfamilies.com/2010/11/my-son-is-gay

    PS Lori – longtime reader and first time commenter – no words can express how much I love your blog and how amazingly wonderful I think you are. Kudos, and thank you for everything you do.

  9. Megan says:

    Same path, same journey. It is like you are telling my story. Halloween…this year Rarity (my little pony). Also age 6/1st grade. I sure hope at some point our families we will cross paths. xoxo

  10. Marla says:

    I think CJ will love this….My daughter is a Yale student and this video was made by her co-students at Yale. Thank you CJ for brining awareness, understanding, and compassion to many that would otherwise be ignorant. Love you CJ ! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lx2em–hzNY&feature=youtu.be

  11. Alison says:

    My 4 year old daughter (who prefers “boy” stuff, DC shoes, and anything blue) dressed as Superman. When well-meaning folks said “Oh, cute, supergirl”, she promptly corrected them. “I’m SuperMAN. See my muscles?” There were quite a few people that thought it was amazing that we let her dress that. The only problem: it’s way more acceptable for girls to be tomboys. She can wear boy clothes, boy swimsuits, boy shoes. She can play with dinosaurs and trucks.

    My other 4 year old daughter (yes, twins) dressed as a Disney princess. She loves sparkles, pink, dolls, and stylish shoes. I couldn’t help but think “what if she was a boy and dressed like Tiana?” Would the general public think it was amazing that we let our son wear that costume? After all, they admired us for “allowing” our other daughter to be Superman.

    I applaud you for celebrating your son’s unique self. Out of 6 kids, I have 3 stereotypical boys, 1 boy that loved nail polish, barbies, and care bears when younger (but at 13 has gradually conformed; he now expresses himself by wearing fancy costumes whenever he can get away with it), and the 2 daughters I described above. Keep doing what you’re doing!

  12. Your article should come with a tissue alert.
    Stunning.
    Why I love reading your blog: you inspire me to take more risks – in my writing, in the way I connect with my husband, my now grown children, my clients, myself.

    Here’s to a world where we do not have to hide.

  13. Reblogged this on JerBear's Queer World News, Views & More From The City Different – Santa Fe, NM and commented:
    One of my favorite blogs with a Halloween post…

  14. And we have your back on the comments over there 🙂

    Hugs

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