The relentless tide of sex stereotypes

Another day, another article about a child who is being taught that she is the opposite sex because she likes the wrong things. May 18th’s victim of gender roles is Shanice/Shane, who is a girl who likes “boys’ things,” and is therefore being transitioned to a boy. The 1950s-style sexism in this article is enough to make me vomit. I swear, somebody somewhere is being paid to churn out these articles daily and they’re required to include as many sex stereotypes as possible. It’s all part of the public relations campaign for traditional gender roles and expensive surgeries.

From the Daily Mail:

“Shane was just six-years-old when he first told his mother that he hated his long hair and girly dresses. From an even younger age, mother-of-two Leanne, 31, noticed he would never play with toys designed for girls and preferred the likes of dinosaurs and Lego. As he grew older he shunned dresses and his mid-length locks, and even begged his mother to let him wear a suit instead of a bridesmaids dress to his sister’s wedding. He finally broke down in tears two years ago explaining that he hated his life because he was a girl on the outside but a boy inside. Now 12 and he goes by the name Shane and goes to school in male clothing.”

So she doesn’t like long hair and dresses, big deal! Let her cut her hair short and wear pants. That doesn’t mean she’s a boy. For heaven’s sake, millions of women and girls walk around wearing pants every single day. Are all of us men? And lots of women have short hair—even heterosexual women sometimes cut their hair short! What are “toys designed for girls”? Like, seriously, are we admitting out loud now that girls should only play with dolls and tea sets? Are we that open about our sexism? I was a normal girl when I was a kid (meaning no gender dysphoria) and I played with Legos. That’s because Legos are fun. Remember this Lego ad from the 1970s, created before the religion of gender roles was forced down our throats?


This little girl from the 1970s wore pants and played Lego, and nobody took her to a gender identity clinic, because it’s normal for girls to wear pants and play with Lego! If you ask me, the gendered marketing of toys is a capitalist plot to get parents to buy more stuff. If there are separate toys for girls and boys, then parents need to buy two of everything instead of just one. I will blame absolutely anything on capitalism, but honestly, tell me I’m wrong on that. If any kid can play with any toy then capitalists sell fewer products because siblings are sharing toys.

“All of his classmates and teachers have been hugely supportive of his change and the youngster has never felt better.”

I don’t think anyone is being supportive of this girl if they’re telling her she’s really a boy. The supportive person in this situation would explain to her that girls can do anything they want, including wear pants, build stuff, and wear a suit to a wedding. They would explain to her that it’s sexist to tell girls that they can’t do something just because they’re girls. They would teach her that sexism is wrong. Instead, they are locking her into a jail of compulsory gender roles and telling her that she has to fit into one box or the other, and if she can’t fit into the role that was assigned to her based on her anatomy, then she will need to modify her body so that she can perform the other role. This is child abuse.

“Leanne has now redecorated the room Shane shares with his sister, replacing the pink walls with comic book-themed décor. She said: ‘Shane used to have a pink room before but he hated it, so now we’ve just finished covering it in Marvel wallpaper and he has lots dinosaurs and boy toys in there. Even before becoming Shane he hated the colour pink because he felt it was too girly and used to say it felt like he was walking into a Barbie house.”

Are you fucking serious?? That’s what you think little girls are? Little people who like pink and Barbies? Little girls are young females of the human species, and they can have all sorts of different favourite colours and favourite toys. They put up comic book and dinosaur decor in her room, and now she’s a boy?? What.The.Fuck.

“The brave schoolboy is currently receiving counselling and will be referred to Children and Adult Mental Health Services later this year where he will be able to discuss future plans. Leanne said: ‘A lot people thought Shane would grow out of wanting to be a boy, but he’s been the same since he was six.”

Oh, great. She’s in gender identity therapy, where they teach kids that they can have any biological sex they want (which isn’t true) and where they reinforce gender roles so that young people think they have to become the opposite sex in order to express their personalities. This is outrageous. Are there no sane and responsible adults left in the world?

When this girl told her mother she wanted to cut her hair, her mother should have said, “Sure, sweetie” and allowed her the hair cut. When she wanted to wear a suit to a wedding, the mother should have said, “You will look dashing! Let’s get you a suit.” When she said she thought she was really a boy, her mother should have said, “Nonsense, you are a girl. Girls can like any sorts of things, and that includes all the things that you like.”

Here is a kick-ass video of Janelle Monae performing in a suit on the American children’s show Sesame Street. It will make you feel better after reading this horrible article. Janelle Monae is not a boy, and neither is this kid.

A lot of girls like this who identify with the sex stereotypes assigned to boys turn out to be lesbians. There is a suspicious comment in this article when they mention the one classmate who was rude to her.

“The only problem we had was when one child called Shane a ‘he-she’, but he got into trouble straight away and was given lessons on homophobia. Since then it’s been brilliant.”

Why did they use the word homophobia here? Isn’t it transphobia, since they believe this kid is trans? It’s almost like they’re admitting something inadvertently through the word homophobia, a word which doesn’t fit since nowhere in this article has sexual orientation been mentioned. I suspect an awareness that the likelihood is strong that this girl will turn out to be a lesbian.

Telling lesbians that they are really men is homophobia. Lesbians are women.

And for gawd’s sake, people, this is 2016. WOMEN WEAR PANTS.


42 thoughts on “The relentless tide of sex stereotypes

  1. The people doing this are sick fucks.

    While this is all deep-seated crazy sex-role shite, it might help if people didn’t think they needed to decorate their kids rooms so that they look like friggin toy stores. When I was a kid I didn’t have a theme to my bedroom. I had a wall color. It was pale green. It was super ugly, I had been allowed to choose it myself when we moved and I was 4. My brother who was two years older chose robins egg blue. Clever bastard! But then he’d been to school.

    The trans grip on people’s brains will loosen, including because mass media will start reporting on it’s fetish origins and lack of scientific basis. And this sort of behaviour will be understood as a disturbed overcommitment to sexist stereotypes. Maybe more people will be like the Let Toys Be Toys people in the UK, and start talking up NOT pushing sex stereotypes on their kids.

    Liked by 3 people

      • Mine were white and covered in pictures I drew or cut out of old calendars or whatever. Dinosaurs, castles, a poster from National Geographic with stuff about mesoamerican cultures, and a ratty map I’d rescued when my school was going to throw it away just because it was 30 years out of date.

        I had also memorized both the NG book on dinosaurs and the one about mammals (I still know an unreasonable amount about this sort of thing.)

        Kids are interested in EVERYTHING until they are told not to be. Kids draw, paint, and sculpt. Kids learn all the dinosaur names. I used to be that insufferable kid who would explain why it’s not a brontosaurus.

        And that doesn’t make me a boy. It makes me a woman who likes science and history and art.

        Liked by 3 people

    • “The trans grip on people’s brains will loosen, including because mass media will start reporting on it’s fetish origins and lack of scientific basis. And this sort of behaviour will be understood as a disturbed overcommitment to sexist stereotypes.”

      If only!

      No, mass media will not do this because they can’t stand the heat from the agenda-driven. Also, mass media is owned by just 5 men / groups of men — and they are all conservatives who are themselves very committed to sexist stereotypes.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Purple Sage. I’ve never commented before but this has pushed me over the edge. One huge obvious clue to me is in the photos in the article. Dressed in her girl gear photo her hair is all styled and she’s wearing a frigging tiara. This is so obviously about sex role stereotypes I can’t even stand it! As you said, this is child abuse. Thank you for this site and your work, I really enjoy it.

    Liked by 5 people

  3. yes! this shit makes me so angry, I swear to god — and everyone has drunk the koolaid, seems to me. It is so obvious that gender is a toxic soup of stereotypes and misshapen expectations yet these deluded parents and teachers are leaping into it, holding their children’s heads under instead of dragging them out of it and draining the fucking swamp.
    Did that metaphor make sense? I blame capitalism, as you do, and patriarchy and imperialism — the dominant ideologies — keep the power concentrated in the hands of the powerful — medicine is in there too, fucking doctors playing god — a woman showed me an intake form for a health care clinic for WOMEN that asked the client to check their GENDER — options were: Male, Female, Trans, (and subsets of trans) M-F, F-M —

    Lord, take me now. (I’m an atheist. that’s desperation)

    awright. thanks for writing this. I’m gonna go set my hair on fire now…

    Liked by 4 people

    • That was a GREAT metaphor! The swamp and the holding heads under. I can never think of stuff like that. And I especially like the phrase “misshapen expectations”.👌🏼 Especially good for something where there’s cosmetic surgery that often goes wrong.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. I am so glad to see, at least, that both women and young girls can wear tuxedos to Sesame Street and not be escorted home by the police.

    I really wonder, sometimes, if that kind of thing goes through parent’s minds when they see little Jenny putting on her brother’s suit jacket. “But that high schooler was just kicked out of her prom for wearing a suit…. I don’t want that to happen to my Jenny.” The social pressure is just so enormous. And it seems like the trans promises match that negativity with such gusto. “Just do this and Jenny – no, it’s James now – will be fine.”

    But nobody is fine. Nobody but Janelle in her tux. We need more Janelles.

    Heh, I just watched an episode of Call the Midwife, and though I so appreciate Patsy and Deliah’s sweet lesbian relationship, they went to what was presumably a lesbian dance club this past episode and I didn’t see one butch or GNC woman in the room. Disheartening.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. This all comes down to the parents. When I was in fourth grade, I came home and announced to my mom that I was never wearing a dress again. She didn’t argue with me and she understood why I didn’t want to wear them. She never once pressured me to “dress up” and defended my choice to my school on several occasions. When I told her I wanted my hair shorter, she took me to a barber because the idiot at the woman’s salon would only give me a Dorothy Hammel cut. My mom listened to my toy preferences when I told her I didn’t want dolls and she got me Matchbox cars and Tonka trucks. (And yes, I loved Legos…still do!) She made sure my relatives didn’t send me crap I didn’t want. Never once did she imply I was a boy or damaged in some way. My mom was born in 1931, so she knew how hard it was to defy gender roles. She refused to dress me in pink when I was a baby. My mom didn’t get any praise or fawning in social media. In fact, I’m sure she put up with a lot of crap from my father, her mother and the neighbors for her little tomboy. Trans like to think they are so progressive, but in fact they are dragging us backwards.

    Liked by 7 people

    • YankeeDragon, I love this story! Yes. The way your mother did it is the way to do it. Let’s make it into a handbook and create our own crazy activist movement and force it down the throats of the parents with the little “trans” kids. Just a fantasy. 💫🦄☄

      I also remember the Dorothy Hamill cut!!! A.k.a. The Wedge. 😂😂😂

      Liked by 2 people

      • My mom was far from perfect, but I am so grateful that she let me be myself. She also made sure I learned not to be concerned about what others thought about me. Sometimes, I still have to remind myself of that when people stare, whisper and point. I think kids coming out as “trans” is just another attempt to be unique, but the more that do it, the less it will be special. Parents need to let kids know that it’s much more worthwhile to stand apart from the herd. I’m automatically suspect of anything that’s “popular”.

        That Hammil cut was the WORST ever. Shudder 😨! I cried when I got home. Mom let me stay home from school the next day so I could get it fixed.

        Liked by 3 people

  6. That Lego ad is so great. It’s kind of a play on a girl serving a cake or a platter of food—that’s what it looks like to me—and the expression on her face is like “Here’s your cake, ha ha assholes.”

    Liked by 3 people

  7. I’m more and more grateful to my parents for raising me and my little brother as people, not a collection of stereotypes. My entire life, I’ve hated sexism and stereotypes, and couldn’t understand why so many of my peers didn’t question them. I never liked most dolls (apart from porcelain collectibles), never had a Barbie, preferred “boy” or gender-neutral toys like marbles and cars. As an adult, I still collect marbles, and treasure the original set of marbles in my collection. Another big influence on me was that my mother kept her birth surname (I refuse to use the sexist, dated, inaccurate term “maiden name”), and so did my aunts. It’s like nails on a chalkboard when I see or hear a woman referred to as Mrs. Husband’s Full Name.

    My dearest, oldest friend always wore pants and was as tomboyish as I was, and no one packed either of us off to a gender clinic. My friend’s son loves painting his nails and using nail stickers, has a lot of female friends, and likes shiny, sparkly stuff. For his fourth birthday, I got him a card from the “girl” section, with a pink glittery unicorn, and he absolutely loved it. My friend isn’t assuming anything about his identity, though she’ll be totally cool with it if he ever comes to her and her husband to say he’s gay. She’d never force him to pretend to be a girl, and as he’s gotten a little older, he’s picked up more male friends.

    My great-grandpap Ben (the only great-grandpap I have a memory of) used to say I was built like a football player and had a boy’s body wasted on a girl. I’m not sure he would’ve continued that opinion had he lived longer than my seventh year, though when he did express his views, my mother never saw that a reason to “transition” me into a boy. It was just an old man from another generation who probably didn’t have the best brain-mouth filter.

    I notice Shane/Shanice had pierced ears in the close-up photo in the article. I’ve seen other “transboys” who had pierced ears in their pictures from babyhood and early childhood, before “transitioning.” That’s a huge sign the parents are forcing sex roles on their kids. As much as I love my multiple-pierced ears, I’d never pierce the ears of any potential child of mine unless s/he were old enough to ask for it, wanted it on more than a passing whim, and understood proper aftercare and such. When I see pierced ears on girls who can’t even talk yet, I assume the parents want everyone to immediately know that’s a girl and not a boy.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Carrie-Anne, I love this! Yes Mrs. Husband’s Full Name makes me vomit.

      Maybe when all this gender nuttiness is over the sparkly pink unicorn mode will just be for ALL kids under five. And everyone over five hate them like poison. 😊

      The pierced ear thing is a brilliant, creepy observation. Interesting how there’s no talk anywhere I’ve seen anyway about how to make sure that kids are not being forced into transition. That used to be talked about when abortion first became legal. If the psychologists and doctors wanting to do this were legit they would have something like a Rigid Genderist Parent Inventory for the psychologist to fill out on each parent. Question 5A) Did you have your sons ears pierced before he ever claimed to be a girl?

      Liked by 4 people

    • Fuck no sexist wedding traditions! I went to a wedding very recently (hence why I am writing this out of St. Lucia) and it took all my willpower not to either enter a rage or burst into tears at all the sexist traditions that my so-called feminist friend adopted for her wedding. I love her to pieces, she came a long way, but when a friend of mine says she’s an “equalist” (but not a man-hating feminist) and then goes on to participate in traditions that are anti-feminist, the disconnect unhinges me. It unhinges me even more when they get butthurt when you point out that disconnect.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Oh my. Well I guess if I was a little kid now, they’d try to make me a boy, too, because as a kid I envied my female cousin who wore jeans all the time and was good at sports while I was clutzy (nearsighted to the extreme) and my mom put me in Polly Flinders dresses. As soon as I had a choice about what to wear, it was jeans and sweaters and comfortable shoes most of the time; I just wanted to play with Tonka trucks and read about history. I couldn’t relate to Barbie and love dark colors (hello, forest green and eggplant and black!) and was about 35 before I learned how to apply makeup. In fact, to this day I hate carrying a purse or wearing dresses (except on rare occasions when I get this bizarre urge to “girl it up” for a day) yet I am decidedly female, straight, and have no desire to change. Nor will you get me to cut my hair short (tried it, hated it).

    Thank God my parents weren’t hung up on which toys were for boys or girls. And the PF dresses? My mom just thought they were pretty on me. But she doesn’t care that I’m all about jeans and keens now.

    Liked by 5 people

    • I hear you. Child Me would probably confuse the hell out of the sex stereotypers now. I liked dresses and trousers and Mum made me both, in all sorts of colours (brown! Pink! Purple! Red! Navy! Orange!) and I had toy animals, toy trucks inherited from my brother, and a Sindy doll. Didn’t like her, I just had to get one to get my hands on the blue satin ballgown Mum had made for my sister’s doll. Sister wouldn’t let me have it till then. 😛

      Liked by 4 people

  9. Ah..I am working at a big department store now and I am so disgusted by the girls toy section. It is all pink and lavendar princess crap, or Hollywood fakey jewelry Barbie shit. Legos catering to vanity, friends, dress up, airhead crap. Boys stuff is all violent superheros, primary colors, glorification of War. NOTHING is unisex. Colors catering and boys are primary and dark. Colors catering to women far more expansive but to girls incredibly limited. Pink is an oppressive color I sometimes wish itbwould be eliminated altogether. Who the fuck wants to coat the world with Pepto Bismol, but thats what you see dripping in the girly section.

    At VERY YOUNG AGES kids are taught what toys are allowed and which arent…according to their sex. No WONDER they rebel when they dont want to be force fed crap. I rejected dolls at 7, dresses at 10, and ever getting married to a man or having babies at 12…this was in the 60s/early 70s…I LOVE that little girl dressed tomboy holding proudly her primary color Lego creation with her red pigtails
    Nowadays it’d be a castle or limo or city scene…with pastels and pinks and Star Wars spaceships for her or Stormtrooper or Darth Vader outfits.

    I HATED being a girl BECAUSE IT LIMITED ME IN THE THINGS I WANTED TO DO. No I did not want a penis, I wanted equal status and resisted any form of femininization!!!

    Liked by 5 people

    • I wouldn’t want any of those girl toys either. They keep getting sillier all the time. I used to love unisex toys where you could build stuff. I did play with Barbies when I was kid, but I also played road hockey. I liked a bit of everything.

      Liked by 3 people

  10. And now they are making Tomboy a dirty word..cuz they wanna make all the Tomboys into gender boys….females who look like boys…but having their femaleness disguised and cloaked and erased. Cuz raising a true Amazon nonfeminine girl who questions EVERYTHING and might come out a Lesbian is way too dangerous.

    I liked dinosaurs too..I had a little copper colored dinosaur for years, and a stuffed green snake I loved. Just dont EVER get me a doll!!

    Liked by 4 people

  11. Pingback: The relentless tide of sex stereotypes – Critiquing Transgender Doctrine & Gender Identity Politics

  12. Unfortunately, many of your fellow “gender critical” radical feminists are completely hypocritical about the rejection of gender stereotypes. I actually found this article via a post which gleefully denounced people assigned male at birth for wearing skirts and dresses.


  13. Most of my gender enforcement came at puberty, although my mother certainly did her best to make me her “little lady” pretty much since birth. Ironically, my father was the one who totally supported me for who I was, whether I felt like being feminine or not. I’m probably too young to notice the increased gender stratification in children’s marketing, but I have noticed over the years that clothes for girls have become increasingly pornified (as have women’s clothes, of course) and clothes even for young boys emphasize a highly macho image. I used to work at a children’s clothes outlet, and I have heard older customers get very offended at the boys’ clothing section being way too teen/young adult like in enforcing a tough image. We;re talking muscle shirts, pit bulls and chains, etc. Classic overalls were the perfect clothes for both boys and girls-all styles, all colors, all materials-and coincidentally, you can’t find them anymore…except for baby boys. I have all but resorted to making my own clothes.

    Speaking of sex stereotypes, Purple Sage, is there any chance you would be willing to do an “open thread” of sorts? I have some burning questions/rants about butch/femme that I would love to discuss but can’t find the appropriate place to do it. I know you focus a lot of lesbian history and I think you and others might appreciate the discussion.


  14. I. Love. Your. Blog. Thank you for writing all this, so I don’t have to. I can spend my time sharing your posts far and wide. Such as printing them to share with my local NOW chapter, Commission on the Status of Women, local electeds, CA N.O.W., and National N.O.W. And on Facebook. Thank you. I hope everyone who reads your work is doing the same.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I want to thank you for your posts. Sometimes it feels like I’m the only sane one, surrounded by many “progressive” friends, who have called me hateful things before, just because I question their transgender religion. Additionally, as a bisexual female, who is very much not “feminine” and at many times despises the fact that she is born female – mostly due to the many many disadvantages and complications that come with it and who is suffering from tokophobia, it feels horrible to be told to have to undergo drastic hormonal and surgical procedures instead of getting the help I need if I ever want to get better. So, thank you again for your work. It helps to know there are people out there with your opinions.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I just tuned into the blagosphere and caught this. What the fuck!? I was totally into dinosaurs and legos, I’m still into dinosaurs, and I am still a straight woman. I never understood how pre-historic extinct animals got gendered.

    Liked by 1 person

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