Some parents no longer tell their kids what sex they are.
It is part of a growing trend.
The trend is raise their kids outside the traditional gender norms.
These kids are called a theyby.
The whole thing is mind-boggling.
One parent described it this way:
“A theyby is, I think, different things to different people. For us, it means raising our kids with gender-neutral pronouns — so, ‘they,’ ‘them,’ ‘their,’ rather than assigning ‘he,’ ‘she,’ ‘him,’ ‘her’ from birth based on their anatomy.”
But what makes this “gender-open” style of parenting stand out, and even controversial in some circles, is that the parents do not reveal the sex of their children to anyone. Even the children, who are aware of their own body parts and how they may differ from others, are not taught to associate those body parts with being a boy or girl. If no one knows a child’s sex, these parents theorize, the child can’t be pigeonholed into gender stereotypes.
It was a Toronto couple that got the ball rolling.
In 2011 they said they were raiding their child without a gender designation.
And today there even is a Brooklyn couple that talks about raising their two–year old, Zoomer, as a theyby.
Some developmental experts see gender-open parenting as a noble goal, but they also wonder how it will hold up once kids enter a gendered world that can be hostile to those who don’t fit clearly into categories. Gender-nonconforming children are more likely to be bullied.
“Once your child meets the outer world, which may be day care, or preschool, or grandparents — it’s pretty much impossible to maintain a gender-free state,” said Lise Eliot, professor of neuroscience at the Chicago Medical School.
Parents like the Sharpe’s understand these realities — but they’re determined to shield their children from them for as long as possible.