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03 January 2011

Comments

Jared

Wow. I admire them for sharing this story with the world!

Thadman

What an amazing family. The love just pours off the screen. I'm so impressed by the support they show their youngest son.

Tom Bardwell

Amazing!

GeeGee

This is sort of crazy to me. This child does not developmentally have the capacity to determine holistically gender identity at such a young age. Unless it was environmentally forced upon him by his mother. I have no issues with transgenderism, but a 5 year old child! Please, give me a break. Smells like a sham to me...

BN

GeeGee, you sound just as ignorant as straight black church people. Did you even watch the piece? You couldn't have, because you would have heard the parents were originally opposed to their son wearing dresses and they later changed their minds.

And just because the boy is wearing a dress at 5yo does not mean he is transgender or will be trans.

You should be applauding parents that support their children's expression. What if the dad beat the little boy to death, what would you say then? Give me a break, indeed.

ger

GeeGee, sometimes a boy just want to be pretty. Even at 5 years old.

Aamir Swag

A true example of what love should be. I fear that society will take his innocent spirit and turn it into something ugly. they will tell him that he is gay and wants to be a girl or worse...when all he is searching for is happiness. I applaud his parents and will keep them all in my prayers.

TheRevKev

I think that this mother's capacity to simply want her son to know that he has her love is just powerful. I do have a few moments of pause with her "princess boy" being ONLY because I pause with the dress-upness of his clothing as costume and don't think it's healthy to have any child have that kind of authority to determine what they want to wear everyday, boy or girl. But again, her love for him and his family's love is the greater example of love.

soulbrotha

Rev, what is so unhealthy about allowing a little kid to dress how he/she wants? Do you presume that there are no boundaries at all? I never got the impression that he dresses like that 24/7. This mother has talked to doctors and teachers to make sure that she is doing right by her child, so I am not sure why there should be a need for concern.

Keith

Kudos for his parents for demonstrating unconditional love for their son. An extraordinary family indeed....

Isis

I think its wonderful that she allows him to explore this way. Its healthy and there is nothing wrong with it. However, I would NEVER NEVER NEVER put my child on TV at that age. He is not old enough to be out there like that. He's gonna have a hard time in Middle/High school. Kids are cruel and these videos will pop up in his future. I just hope that they have him prepared for that.

fin

as a transgendered woman the scene of this child in the petticoats just tore at my heart. when i was younger than this child I was doing the same thing. dancing to american bandstand twirling in my sisters petticoats only to be spanked. only the first of many instances of my identity being torn away from me. this is a child, i dont know if this child is a boy or girl or something else, nor do any of you nor does this childs mother. it is a young sweet child that doesnt need to be exploited. while i applaud the childs family for trying I would just beg for this childs anonymity. this baby will have plenty to deal with growing up without being pushed into the national spotlight

True Words

Great book and great message but again my child would not be on TV; if he "outgrows" this will he ever live it down as a teenager and/or young adult.

Just My Opinion

This child does not seem happy. He's 5 and just because it strokes the emotional hurts of adults who have been damaged bu hatred does not mean it's ok for him to be exploited this way. Some of the same people saying he should be allowed to wear whatever he wants frown and make derogatory remarks about things such as sagging pants. Hypocracy at its best.

Stone

I think this is a great story about acceptance and helping parents become aware of their own anxieties about gender socialization and gender role performance. I agree with Fin, though. Protect the child. You are putting him in harm's way by parading him on national television. Mereith asking to see the boy twirl not once, but twice, was exploitaive.

Herndon Davis

Although I am highly impressed with both the love and tolerance of his mother, I still feel the direction that this is going is not wise at all.

Exactly how do you teach a 5 year old child that outside his tightly controlled bubble that the world's reaction is not going to be as loving towards him???

Truth is you can't he has to experience it personally. But by being so public about his life, his mother is setting him up for a potential heartbreaking and unrecoverable fall.

I hope and pray he isn't dead by 14 either by his own hands or at the hands of others. Too much publicity and permission in such a hateful acting world is not good.

There has to be a balance taught. Yes white LGBT advocates are cheering them on now, but they will not be around when he's left to find his place in the AA community with intolerance at every turn combined with racism.

His instinct is not to fight or to defend himself but instead just to be as his mother has created a haven for him under the glaring spotlight. If we lived in an ideal world of limitless love and tolerance then this works wonderfully.

Again I pray for him, his family and his life in this world. Please join me in this effort.

soulbrotha

Oh good grief. People are already foretelling doom and destruction for the little boy. For those of you who are wringing their hands over this:

-I've only seen two interviews. What "glaring spotlight" is he under? And if he does more, so what? As long as the parents are being responsible (and by all indications they are) then what is the problem?

-The mother, the father, the brother, his teachers and his classmates seem pretty protective of him. So I don't think he is going to have any problems for a while if at all. People make it sound like the mother is exploiting him which I don't see at all. Again she has sought advice from all areas and she seems very levelheaded. Let's not start chewing our nails just yet.

-If the whole point of this is to give him the confidence to be HIMSELF and love HIMSELF, then I would think that other kid's cruelty (which would be there if he wore pants) will have little effect on him. As a matter of fact, he will probably have more strength of will than the "prince boys." He even SAID that he just doesn't befriend the cruel kids. And I'm sure if it was really getting to him, he would say so and/or stop wearing the dresses.

-Instead of looking at this so negatively, how 'bout this: maybe when he gets older and kids try to tease him about these interviews and the book, he will be so above it all that he will be able to teach and inspire THEM through his personal freedom and intelligence.

And if in the back of your mind you think he is somehow going to be weak or more vulnerable or somehow his instinct is not to fight because he wears a pink dress, isn't that being as narrow-minded (and foolhardy) as the bullies? Most parents teach their kids not to fight, but it's a big assumption to think that his parents will not teach him to protect himself in a threatening situation.

-And finally, when he DOES have to face racism and intolerance in this cruel, cruel world, he will deal with it just like you, me and everyone else who is "different," pink dress or no pink dress.

Jim

@ Herndon Davis:

First of all, it seems pretty clear to me that Dyson’s parents realize that their son will need to survive outside of a “tightly controlled bubble,” especially if you listened to the longer, Seattle-filmed video. They don’t strike me as stupid or naive. I don’t know how the mother identifies herself ethnically, but the father surely considers himself to be black, and he probably knows something about the need to protect himself.

Second, I suspect that the Kilodavises are pretty affluent folks, and that affluence will protect Dyson for a while. He will go to private schools where, if he is not treated with respect, his parents can take their tuition money elsewhere. Dyson may not have to put with as much harshness as those of us from working class backgrounds had to put up with. Also, the family lives in Seattle, not Mobile, and I bet they don’t attend Ken Hutcherson’s church, either.

But third, and most important, it has been my experience that the strongest gay people are those who grow up with parents who loved and supported them early on just as they were. These gay people have a strength that I cannot imagine having for myself, and it is a strength that enables them to stand up to a great deal of abuse later in life, in a way that I will never be able to.

I, for one, would gladly risk my child’s being a little over-protected in the beginning in exchange for his having that foundation of strength without which his life will always be a struggle.

ATL FINEST

AMAZING? HOW ABOUT SOME AMAZING GRACE!

Ooh chile, Rod and some of you gay boys need to sat down. Sat down! Trying to turn little boys into little girls! A mess a pure d mess!

Being gay is one thing but tutus at 5 years old ... a mess honey a mess!

ATL FINEST

'Yes white LGBT advocates are cheering them on now, but they will not be around ..'

Oooh Miss Herndon you need to sat down too chile ... sat down!

Talking about 'white LGBT advocates' and knowing you never sip black coffee ... only the white cream! Trust!

Yall are a mess up n here a pure d mess!

ButterflyGirl

the only person who is a mess in here is you @ATL FINEST

Kevin Perez

"Again I pray for him, his family and his life in this world. Please join me in this effort."

I know what you can do with your prayers and your precious Holy Book.....Still cease to amaze me the mentality of some gay men of color or who are ethnic minorities. Some of the crap sounds a lot of our right-wring hacks would say!

Seriously, can there ever be a discussion that doesn't involve someone saying "You'll/they'll be in my prayers". It comes as not only cheesy, but phony and patronizing. Some comments here are right. The fact that his family supports him is sufficient enough. Most LGBT, especially those of color, have NO support what so ever.

Someone once told me as long as one person, just one person, loves you unconditionally, than usually that's all that matters. Is true all the time? No. But in this day and age, LGBT are lucky enough to have a roof over their heads.

single dad

Hi there I am one of many single fathers and I find your site very interesting. I hope I have much time each day to drop by and check your site for recent post. By the way thank you for sharing this.

Derrick from Philly

Soulbrotha, Jim, Kevin and those who've commented on having the love and support of family are right.

If you have one parent's love you'll be able to face evil motha' f.ckas outside your home. If you have both parents' love you'll be fierce in any potential bullying situation. If you have the whole family's love you'll be unstoppable.

"Well, what about the rash of child suicides we had last year--children who were emotionally tortured because they were thought to gay?" one might ask.

I wouldn't blame the mothers that we saw suffering with their child's suicide--the mothers whose pain we witnessed last year. In those cases even with that parent's love there may be other circumstances which make the child vulnerable. The mother may not be in a solid position to protect her gay/trans or just plain sensitive child. The mother in that situation needs support herself.

But little Dyson obviously has all the love and support he needs from parents who are not only strong but well-educated.

Soulbrotha, your comment wasn't only articulate but inspiring. THanks.

ger

Soulbrotha spoke the truth.

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