At first glance, Halloween would seem to be a great opportunity for kids to dress up however they want, without raising any eyebrows. For families adjusting to life with gender nonconforming children, the relief of Halloween must be a no-brainer, right?
Sometimes not. I’d like to share with you a story from Lori Duron’s blog about her family’s experiences at Halloween. Lori is the author of the book Raising My Rainbow and the popular blog of the same name that tells of her family’s adventures raising what she calls a “gender-creative” son. C.J. likes girl stuff, but not always. C.J., as Lori puts it, “floats on the gender-variation spectrum from super-macho-masculine on the left all the way to super-girly-feminine on the right. He’s not all pink and not all blue. He’s a muddled mess—a rainbow creation.”
Sometimes, when we read or hear stories from parents, husbands, or wives willing to share their experiences with their gender nonconforming child, or their spouse who hid their sexual orientation behind a marriage, we may wonder would we be so calm and fair-minded if we were in their shoes? We forget that their adjustment likely didn’t happen overnight, we just haven’t been privy to the whole process. Because it’s only when people reach a point of peace and acceptance that they are able to tell their stories, and that’s a blessing to the rest of us.
This is one of those stories, and it’s a good reminder to be kind with ourselves and our fellow travelers in life. Rash judgements serve no one. Some things just take time.
My Son Chooses to Be Alice in Wonderland”
by Lori Duron
originally published in The Atlantic, October 31, 2013