02 December 2007

The Swish in His Hips

Our little one is a wee bit swishy. In the best possible way.

It comes out when he dances or plays imaginary games with his sister. When we engaged all of the kids at a family wedding earlier this fall in a game of charades, he was the best supermodel of the bunch. He could work a runway better than a top ranked model, but less model and more queen.

At dinner parties, we like to speculate on the outcome of his sexual orientation. He has this dash of gay, but is oh-so-not-so-gay at the same time. We can't make him. And, so we wait and watch for him to make himself.

Keeping with the ambigousness of children's sexual orientations, we talk about all relationships in hypotheticals with him - "When you bring home a girlfriend or boyfriend..." or "What kind of things do you think makes a good girlfriend or boyfriend..." He sometimes talks about cute girls at school and other times he talks about his future with a girlfriend or boyfriend.

We've tried to make it clear for both kids that it doesn't matter to us whether or not they end up gay or straight. For a while there, Bella was feeling a tortured by the fact that she likes boys.

All of this came forth in a very interesting conversation on the drive home from a marathon candy shopping trip in preparation to the holiday building of a gingerbread village.

Piping up from the backseat in a most conflicted and endearing voice, Bubaloo asked me if I would promise not to ever embarrass him in front of a girlfriend. After clarifying whether he meant "intentionally embarrass" or "embarrass him by my mere existence and breathing in the same room," I discovered that he doesn't yet have a girlfriend but lots of prospects as there are a plethora of cute girls at his school.

As with all relationship conversations, we encourage our kids to explore what would make a good partner.

After reiterating his top priority, the cuteness of the girl in question of course, he shared his second need. He wants a girlfriend who won't make fun of him because he has two moms.

I nearly slammed on the brakes to turn around and face him to gauge the seriousness of the comment. Instead, I just looked in the rear view mirror and saw that he was dead serious.

Bubaloo has been experiencing some teasing in the past few weeks and is feeling incredibly self-conscious about his family. He loves his family in the comfort of his home, and shifts uncomfortably in the playground with his peers.

After affirming that respect is an important part of any relationship, I asked him what else would make a good girlfriend.

The next important value came someone who is nice, followed by someone who would do his homework. He was pulling my leg with this last one. I then asked him to think about how it might be important to have a girlfriend who would like similar things or like things that they could do together. In the end, he decided that this wasn't too important to him.

In recapping the list of the four important attributes of a girlfriend or boyfriend, Bubaloo stopped on number two again.

"I could have a girlfriend or boyfriend," he said deep in thought. "The good thing about a boyfriend is that he wouldn't care if I have two moms."

"Um, yes, that's right Sweetie," I said. "I don't think your boyfriend would be too concerned about you having two moms. But, it's also important that any girlfriend you have not care about you having two moms, either."


Ottawa Gardener said...

Another great post. My best girlfriend is married to a woman and they have a young boy who hasn't yet felt the sting of people's intolerance. I think they'd enjoying reading this post.

Not only that but it speaks wisely to what we all need to think of in a partner.

Happy Holidays!!

meanie said...

my daughter has a swish-y in her class and we all absolutely love him. i have many gay friends, a family member is gay, and my daughters think nothing of it. perhaps she and your son can hook up - she'd never make fun :)