(June 29) - A Swedish couple's decision to keep their toddler's gender a secret is stirring debate, especially now that the parents are expecting a second child.
"Pop" is 2 ½ years old, but so far only those who change the child's diapers know whether the youngster is a boy or a girl, TheLocal.se
, an English-language site for Swedish news, said last week.
Back in March, the parents gave an interview to the Svenska Dagbladet newspaper, saying they decided not to reveal their child's sex because they believe gender is a social construction.
"We want Pop to grow up more freely and avoid being forced into a specific gender mold from the outset," said the child’s mother, "Nora." (The paper used fake names for the entire family to protect their privacy.)
"It's cruel to bring a child into the world with a blue or pink stamp on their forehead," the mother said.
The parents, both 24 years old, said they never use personal pronouns when referring to the child. They just say "Pop."
The tot wears everything from dresses to pants, and Pop is usually the one who decides what to wear on any given morning. Pop's hairstyle is also changed on a regular basis, so it doesn’t provide any clues.
Swedish gender equality expert Kristina Henkel told The Local that the experiment could make Pop a stronger person, since he or she won’t be subject to gender stereotypes.
Posted in: News
by Puchiko on July 1, 2009
@ 9:46 AM
Tags: Experiment, Gender, Psychology
I'd be a lot more comfortable with this if the parents wouldn't publicise this so much, it seems like they're making a political point. Whether this is good or bad for the child is yet to show, and I don't see letting the kid make its own choices as wrong, but I dislike the parents medialising it.
Hmmm... interesting. Well, the kid is going to find out what gender he/she is at some point anyway, and could possibly then assume some kind of gender role to "fit in". If he/she wants.
It would be cool actually if there was a pronoun people can use that isn't gender specific. He/she is too long to type or say, I really want something better. XD
I agree with their idea. Gender is a social construct, people are just people. How they behave should be entirely up to them. It's good that they're making it public because it might get some people thinking. It's not like their real names were used. I just hope the kid has a choice about attending school as well, 'cause I can foresee a lot of teasing happening to the kid if nobody knows what gender it is. Haha, I said "it". XD
Soul, there already is a gender neutral pro-noun. The politically correct have invented s/he, which has quickly morphed to s/h/it.
Well, i think its obvious myself (i might be wrong but it seems like this fits the bill)
They won't say, gender ambuguity, etc
Gender neutral pronouns are established. Ze is used in place of he or she and hir is in place of her or him.