Your queer toddler knows all about pronouns, but how about gender expression?

by Second Wave Dinosaur

About a year ago, we told you about the importance of pronoun etiquette for preschoolers, as taught by the geniuses at Queer Kid Stuff. QKS fans will be happy to know that Lindsay and her self-described genderqueer teddy bear are still at it on Youtube, busily indoctrinating preschoolers in the intricate and very important topics of identity, pronouns, and (to kick off 2018) gender expression.

Update January 14: Lindsay must have got some feedback on the video. She wants to make sure all Second Wave Dinosaurs are well-educated about the meaning of dress-up:

Season 3 of Queer Kid Stuff  just launched two days ago, and in the first episode, Teddy  learns that gender expression (not to be confused with gender identity) is “just like dress-up!” And you can’t tell what someone’s pronouns or their identity is from their gender expression! But still, it’s really important that preschoolers be able to parse the difference between all these concepts.

Lindsay helpfully teaches us there are three categories of gender expression:

  • Masculine (seems to be about short hair, maybe a beard,  but no lipstick),
  • Feminine (involves lipstick; the example given is a “femme presenting woman” who “never takes a picture without my lipstick” and likes “lots and lots of velvet”), and
  • Androgynous (may or may not involve lipstick).

Got that? Well, forget it, because everyone of course gets to define for themselves what their gender expression means, and every pre-verbal child should know all about it, no matter how you, me, or “they” express!!

But…but…as Teddy says, this is so…complicated.

Teddy: Lindsay, am I expressing my gender right now? I don’t know what my expression is!

Now if it were me, Second Wave Dinosaur that I am, I’d say, yeah, Teddy, nobody cares about your dang “gender expression,” just get outside and have some fun playing on the slides and swing-set and the mud, and don’t trouble your little head-‘o-fluff with all this gender malarkey. But Lindsay is far, far wiser than some Second Wave dinosaur like me.

Teddy is androgynous

Lindsay: You are totally expressing your gender, Teddy! Hm. To me, you look like you’re more androgynous. Does that seem right to you?

Teddy: Yeah. I like that. I think I’m starting to get it…but…it’s kind of hard to understand.

But we need Teddy to understand, don’t we? Teddy must choose and then understand “their” gender identity and expression so they can impose it on everyone else–as well as understand everyone else’s identity and expression (which, Lindsay helpfully tells us, don’t necessarily match). Got it?

Lindsay: That’s because there’s not one definition for how someone can be masculine, feminine, or androgynous. Every person’s gender expression is unique to them! So it’s fun to experiment with how you look and dress so you can find out what works and feels best to you!

Teddy: Like playing dressup?

Lindsay: Exactly like playing dressup!

Second Wave Dinosaur (me, sotto voce): So then, great! Now can we go outside and play trucks or dolls in the mud??? Or…dressup?

But nope, it ain’t recess time yet.

Lindsay: Another thing that’s really important to know is that you can’t always tell someone’s pronouns or their gender identity just from their gender expression.

Teddy pronouns can't tellSecond Wave Dinosaur (me): OMFG (or since we’re watching a toddler show, oh my gosh!)

Teddy: Yeah! You can’t tell someone’s pronouns from what they look like.

Lindsay: So even if someone is feminine, they might not use she pronouns.

Teddy: Yeah! That makes sense!

Second Wave Dinosaur (me, sotto voce): Huh, that stuffed bear grasps this crap way better than I do.

Teddy: Talking about gender is my favorite thing!

Luckily for Teddy and “their” preschool viewers, there’s lots more to come. Come back every other Wednesday, kids! Oh, and don’t forget to donate to our Patreon page, “supportive” moms and dads who are forcing this delightful propaganda on your kids [check the comments on the video to see the damage…and before they get deleted, a few remarks from the sane among us].

Don’t worry if you don’t have sufficiently deep pockets to donate to the QKS Patreon. At least one LGBT organization is funding this crucial educational program:

For now, you can watch the whole episode right here. Better than just playing boring cis dressup, for sure!

 

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