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DS very angry he can't wear "girls clothes"

(35 Posts)
Shrekst Sun 14-Oct-18 13:28:37

Hi I'm posting here so there isn't a lot of hatred and arguing. Please be respectful, this is a really difficult time.

DS has always been allowed whatever h wants. He has princess dresses to dress up with at home, he likes short hair so has it like that and he wears all the pink in the world. Not w problem at all. I don't try and pretend to him it's girls stuff. He's just a boy who likes those things, not a boy who likes girls stuff.

Anyway, he is extremely angry when he cannot wear a school summer dress, girl school shoes, leotard and skirt at dance, swimming costume/bikini, he's even wanted to try a bra type thing.

This is what concerns me, I've told him some of those clothes are designed in such ways for a girls body (seriously what else can I say!?). I've said you don't need a bra do you? And he gets so angry. Hysterically crying. He's not good at vocalising how he feels.

He started destroying his school uniform the other day, sobbing he can't wear a skirt.

I honestly don't know what to do. I've always been very much if I raise him to believe he can be a boy and have these things, he'll never need to think he's a girl.

I'm at such a loss. Does this sound like a transgender child to you? He's 10 by the way.

Biologicalreality Sun 14-Oct-18 13:32:38

Sympathy. I have a DS who was very into dresses at about 6-8. Now he is 10 he doesn’t want to quite so much, but he does get very angry about other stuff. Perhaps focus on how to make him less angry, rather than what he is angry about?

Babdoc Sun 14-Oct-18 13:39:47

As Captain Kirk said to an adolescent alien on Star Trek:
“There are a million things in the universe you can have, and a million things you can’t have. It’s no fun facing that, but that’s the way it is”.

Has your son always had everything he wants? Maybe it’s time to learn that the universe, (including school uniform rules), doesn’t revolve around him. You could explain that we all have to go along with rules and laws that we don’t like, but he can still dress up at home. He needs to know this important truth, or he will grow up with a spoiled, pampered male sense of entitlement.

ADastardlyThing Sun 14-Oct-18 13:40:51

His reaction sounds quite extreme, does he know girls wear bras because they have developing breasts? Something he won't ever have as he is a boy so has no need for a bra?

I mention this gently, but a friend of mine has just had a diagnosis of autism for her DS. One of the first 'hints' was he too wasn't good about vocalising his feelings and got quite destructive smashing toys up etc. Now they have strategies and good support in place he's a different boy. Do be on your guard, some doctors, schools etc will absolutely set him on the transgender path simply because of the pink, dresses etc angry

Shrekst Sun 14-Oct-18 13:46:11

@Babdoc he doesn't always get what he wants, absolutely not. Clothing choice, yeah, as idc what he wears as long as he's happy. I've tried the rules thing with him and that's when the "but why did I have to come out a boy". He's never hated being a boy before this point.

@ADastardlyThing that's my worry, if I seek professional help as soon as I say he likes pink they go "oh he's definitely transgender" which is obviously not a concern for me (the pink I mean).

I'm concerned how he's beginning to really dislike being male. I've said to him there's lots of things we may not like about ourselves and the way we look but we can't change those things, I wanted to make it never seem like an option and he just starts withdrawing and being really upset and depressed.

IFeelSorryForMillie Sun 14-Oct-18 13:47:28

no he doesn't sound like a transgender child.

he's happy being a boy, but pissed of he can't wear a skirt to school.

have you asked school if he can wear a skirt or summer dress? if he can, will you fore warn him that he will have to be brave in the face of nasty comments? (whilst also reporting to school about any bullying he receives)

TBH though I he was yonger than 10 with the type of behaviour you described. As he sounds like a tantrumming toddler who doesn't like not getting his own way.

Dommina Sun 14-Oct-18 13:48:22

Would the school be open to him wearing a dress? Or a skirt?

I world certainly keep showing him that you can wear all this stuff and not have to be a girl. Also be prepared for him to encounter teasing, although teachers are a lot more clued up on gender issues nowadays. I would have a chat with the school and teacher.

Outside of that, is he allowed to wear dresses/skirts outside of school? As in out of the house?

I also second making sure he knows that you love and support him, but that he might not get to do all that he wants until he had grown a little.

HamiltonCork Sun 14-Oct-18 13:48:46

Does he have a lot of internet access? Might be worth checking what you tube videos he is watching.

Dommina Sun 14-Oct-18 13:52:18

Please remember as well that therapy does not have to mean that he will start the 'dark path' of transitioning that some will have you believe. If you want that as an option, shop around. Gender criticality is largely coming out in young people as 'non-binary' i.e. Not ascribing to the idea of gender and challenging the need for surgery. It would be useful for him to have someone to talk to.

Evalina Sun 14-Oct-18 13:53:44

It sounds like you're doing all the right things. I think it might be worth telling him that there are lots of girls who would like to wear trousers to school, but that they have to wear skirts as that's the uniform.

Likewise I'm sure there are many air stewardesses who would prefer to wear trousers, but I think they still all wear skirts.

So whilst in an ideal world he could wear what he likes, it's not an ideal world, and he's not the only one frustrated by uniform rules based on whether you're male or female.

Fairenuff Sun 14-Oct-18 13:55:36

I would also check what sorts of things he is watching/reading about on the internet. Has there been a talk in school about children 'choosing' which sex they want to be? Or even a talk about puberty and changing bodies which has frightened him. Lots of children are confused about their bodies at that age.

I would make sure he absolutely has the facts about male and female biology and how it cannot change.

Clothing is just a way to be modest and warm. It's completely different and can change all the time.

RitaFairclough Sun 14-Oct-18 13:55:50

Could you point out how rubbish girls’ clothes are? Dresses and skirts are restrictive and stupid, and girls’ shoes let the rain in. Maybe say he’s better off in boys’ uniform for school but let him wear what he wants outside?

My son also has a thing for girls’ clothes but he says when he wears them, they’re boys’ clothes. He always asks me to put bronzer on his cheeks and he likes nail varnish too. He wants to be The Boy in the Dress for World Book Day. But he is very adamant he is a boy.

IStandWithPosie Sun 14-Oct-18 13:56:44

Has someone said he actually can’t wear those things? I’d just let him tbh.

Di11y Sun 14-Oct-18 14:19:36

I'm pretty sure school should be allowing him to wear a dress if he wants.

Fairenuff Sun 14-Oct-18 14:30:46

I would not ask the school if he can wear a dress. He is only 10. This might be a decision that he regrets but will never be able to live down. Also, the other children might start asking him if he's a girl, etc. It will complicate things for him.

Just say that it's not an option for him to wear dresses to school. If would not let him get away with destroying his uniform either. That behaviour is not acceptable.

MrsKCastle Sun 14-Oct-18 14:40:41

I would allow him to wear a dress/skirt to school, after speaking to them first.
Same with dance, swimming etc.

I would prepare him first though, by talking about how some people believe that only girls should wear skirts/dresses, so some people (both children and their parents) might not understand. Lots of discussion of the possible consequences and how he could deal with them e.g. If people say 'you're a girl' how could you respond? And I would talk to him about social conventions vs rules. Boys wearing dresses may not meet with approval from society, but it doesn't harm anyone and actually it's an outdated convention that we should be fighting against.

Hyppolyta Sun 14-Oct-18 14:46:37

Another vote for speak to the school and see if he can wear the uniform he wants.

However, 10year old girls dont usually wear bras, Id question where this is coming from as the things he wants arent what other children his age are using.

Lynne1Cat Sun 14-Oct-18 14:50:08

I wouldn't say he's transgender or anything like that. This sounds like a boy who has been allowed to wear girls' clothes whenever he likes - which isn't always helpful to a child. He needs to understand that there are rules in life that we all have to follow - one of them being that he must dress as his gender for school and other outdoor occasions.

You wouldn't expect him, for instance, to be allowed to wear a tutu when the boys play football? Or a princess outfit when he plays cricket?

I think you've made a rod for your own back in allowing him to choose his own clothes.

Thund4rcat Sun 14-Oct-18 14:50:36

When I was about 7 I hated wearing skirts so my Mum got the school to let me wear trousers. I was the only girl to do so. I didn't particularly get picked on for this (although can imagine it would be a lot more likely for a boy in a skirt) and nobody ever considered I was trans, including me. If he is aware of the risk of bullying and thinks it is worth it, I think you should let him wear the skirt.

donquixotedelamancha Sun 14-Oct-18 15:07:02

Why can't he wear a skirt to school?

I wouldn't do that lightly, and he needs to be ready for some stupid comments, but if he really wants to......

steppemum Sun 14-Oct-18 15:24:50

However, 10year old girls dont usually wear bras

dd2 is 10, in year 6 and pretty much every girl wears a crop top or teen bra.

I am going to go against the trend here. He has said, loud and clear, Why did I have to come out as a boy?
I think there is a case here for looking for support.
I would be very wary about where that support came from, and would not want to push down any transgender line at this stage, but he is well beyond the 'tomboy' or 'effeminate boy' stage.

I wonder if a couple of things might help.
1. How many girls actually wear dresses and skirts? In our school, by age 10, less than half. So looking at what the girls actually wear, and maybe getting girl's trousers instead of boys trousers, may be a compromise.
2. Looking at pictures of adults who are men but choose to dress differently, Grayson Perry and Eddie Izzard spring to mind, and be clear that these are men, but that they have chosen to be none traditional men. It is OK for boys to not always be traditional.
From that you can talk about context, so some places have rules about what we wear, and not everyone likes them, many uniforms are uncomfortable, or not what you would choose, uniforms at work or school are made to do a job. Who we are outside of work /school is our choice.

Stuckforthefourthtime Sun 14-Oct-18 15:36:56

@steppemum sounds very sensible.

Why can't he wear a dress? It's unfair, really that girls can wear trousers but boys can't wear skirts. As a child my cousin only wore boys clothes for a couple of years, they didn't let her at school and it was hugely upsetting for frankly no purpose - what harm would it have done? Fwiw she's now a gender-conforming mother of two.

It looks like this post has already been spotted by the large anti-trans group on Mumsnet. I do sympathise with some of their concerns, but please don't let the fairly gender rigid views of a small but vocal group make you push him hard to stop wearing dresses (just as I'd be concerned if you were pushing hard for him to start hormone treatment).

WickedLazy Sun 14-Oct-18 15:49:46

I don't think he's transgender, but I do think it's crap the kid can't just wear a pinafore or skirt and blouse, and a bow, because it would cause such a stir. It's fashion, historically men wore kilts, tunics, robes etc and baby boys dresses. I wanted trousers for school but we weren't allowed, I'm glad that's changed now at least. The likes of David Bowie, Brian Molko etc rocked the androgynous look as teens/adults, but got a lot flack for it first. It's easy to say be revolutionary, but easier said than done. This will be much easier when he's a teen and finds like minded friends. I was a goth, and we had a few boys in skirts and big boots, full make up etc. One of the guys is engaged now and has a baby on the way and seems happy? He still dresses alternative sometimes, in a way I don't have the energy for now (hugs cardi to self). "I've told him some of those clothes are designed in such ways for a girls body", Good response, he'll always be flat chested, without falsies for "the look", if he's still interested in lingerie in 10 years, that's something he needs to explore without his mum blush. I know a lot of mums who wouldn't let dd's his age wear bikinis', as they aren't practical, the top rides up a lot etc, could you tell him he can think about showing of his chest, breaking fashion rules etc more when he's older, now school needs to be more about working and playing?

steppemum Sun 14-Oct-18 15:53:02

Can I just say, that my dd is the female version of this. She has only worn boys clothes since she was about 8. She is now 13, and recently came out as gay.
Her lowest point was aged about 11/12 and she really wanted boys boxers. I had to explain that they just were not the right shape.
She has never done the - I want to be a boy thing, but she has been very uncomfortable in girls' clothes.
But it is so much easier being a girl, she could just wear trousers.

Since she has come out as gay, she has actually relaxed a lot, and while she certainly isn't about to wear a dress, her T-shirts /trousers are less aggressively masculine now. She is more comfortable with who she is overall.

Littlechocola Sun 14-Oct-18 15:58:07

Why can’t he?

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