Author: Richard R. Becker

The Art of Being Gender Ambidextrous

  There was a bit of confusion when the girls on my daughter’s 8U softball team tried to separate themselves into “tomboys”and “girly-girls.” My daughter didn’t know which group to pick. “Dad, what am I?” she beamed, expecting a definitive answer. “It depends on the day,” I said. “Pick whatever group you want.” “Okay,”she called back, “I’ll pick tomboys to make it even.” Six and six is how the girls divided themselves, with each group taking one side of the picnic table while they ate pizza. The split was an innocent enough diversion between games but it also struck me as indicative of our society. Feminine or feminist? Masculine or mama’s boy? It’s not as easy for someone like my daughter, who learned to catch in a sundress. It’s not as easy for someone like my son, who would rather sew the hole in his jersey than ask his mom to do it for him. My wife Kim and I raised both of our children to be gender ambidextrous, tossing out any expectations in favor …