On Raising a Boy

The 'me too' movement was in full swing when I found out the baby I was carrying was a boy. I was thrilled. And yet I immediately began to view the emphasis on female much differently.

And then a few days ago that feeling returned - I saw a little girl wearing a shirt - The Future is Female, it read. And my stomach began to ache.

I am a feminist. I was raised by feminists, as both my mom and dad advocated for and supported women and girls with a deep passion. I'm proud that the accomplishments I've made have been because of those feminists before me. I know I'm able to be the best parent I can be and continue my career in large part because of feminism. And I am grateful.

But it is different now. Now that I hold a little  boy in my arms. The future is not solely female. For his sake and for mine, it cannot be. The future MUST be human. We must step beyond one gender currying favor over another. The future must be re-made. We can no longer subscribe to this outdated mode. We must re-define the norm to suit the young children seeking respect and tolerance throughout the world.

Each day I ask the Universe to allow me to raise a man who values all women and men with equity. That he will do everything in his power to support another's quest to be their own best self. That he may be curious enough to inquire gently about others.

And then I snuggle him close, kiss his forehead and tell him he will be a great human.

Alicia JohnsonComment