> My daughter wears track pants and T-shirts. She has shaggy short hair (the look she requested from the hairdresser was “Luke Skywalker in Episode IV”). Most, but not all, of her friends are boys. She is sporty and strong, incredibly sweet, and a girl.

> And yet she is asked by the pediatrician, by her teachers, by people who have known her for many years, if she feels like, or wants to be called, or wants to be, a boy.

> In many ways, this is wonderful: It shows a much-needed sensitivity to gender nonconformity and transgender issues. It is considerate of adults to ask her — in the beginning.

> But when they continue to question her gender identity — and are skeptical of her response — the message they send is that a girl cannot look and act like her and still be a girl.

> She is not gender nonconforming. She is gender role nonconforming. She does not fit into the mold that we adults — who have increasingly eschewed millenniums-old gender roles ourselves, as women work outside the home and men participate in the domestic sphere — still impose upon our children. [...]

> I want trans kids to feel free and safe enough to be who they are. I also want adults to have a fluid enough idea of gender roles that a 7-year-old girl can dress like “a boy” and not be asked — by people who know her, not strangers — whether she is one. [...]

> The kids get it. But the grown-ups do not. While celebrating the diversity of sexual and gender identities, we also need to celebrate tomboys and other girls who fall outside the narrow confines of gender roles. Don’t tell them that they’re not girls.
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