Wanna get a little weepy at work, in a good way? Slog tipper Ryan directed me to this excellent Atlantic essay written by the father of a son who likes "girl things." The family was featured on the Today show earlier this week, but I like this piece because a father supporting his son is not a narrative we hear often enough, and it highlights how being a stereotypical man doesn't have to mean being a bully to your nonconforming child:
To me, loving a child who is different, a target and seen as vulnerable is my role as a father and decent human being. He’s just as special to me and loved by me as my oldest son, whose most prized possession is a pocketknife, who plays football, likes fart jokes, and is starting to notice girls.
I’m a father. I signed on for the job with no strings attached, no caveats, no conditions. I can name every Disney Princess and her movie of origin. I've painted my sons nails and rushed to remove it when he was afraid that he would get teased for wearing it. I didn't want to remove it, I wanted to follow him around and stare down anybody who even thought about teasing him. I only removed it because he started to have a panic attack. It was his decision and if he wants to edit himself to feel safer, I’ll do it. Every time. No questions asked.