I'm an amazingly lucky mother to my fabulous 5 year old son Cian. We live in Ancaster Ontario, just outside of Hamilton.
Our story recently went viral over a blog post I wrote on Bored Panda found here: http://www.boredpanda.com/my-son-cian-yes-my-son-who-wears-dresses/
But, I'd love to share it with all of you here as well. My son is a part of my life and my photography.
Being a Parent means a lot of different things to many different people. What does being a parent mean to me? It means, putting someone before myself. It means, loving someone more than anything in the entire world. It means, raising a child to become the best version of themselves. To encourage. To respect. To inspire and develop the next generation of our society. Becoming a parent no longer is about US. It’s about THEM.
In 2012 I became a parent. Becoming a parent changes you. Sometimes for the best and for some, for the worst. Having my son changed me for the best. I need to be an example for my son. I want my son to grow up knowing he has a voice. Grow up knowing he can do and be ANYTHING he wants to be in this world. Grow up having the confidence to express himself. Grow up being able to LOVE himself. So, I made sure I did (and still do) these things for my son.
This is my son Cian and he loves to wear dresses.
Cian also loves to wear a cape and play Superhero. He loves Ironman, Paw Patrol, Hiking, playing cars and cutting his hair short to look like other men he sees. My son is a boy. He knows he’s a boy. We are teaching him that girls have a vagina and boys have a penis. ** He has a penis, he is a boy. ** He doesn’t use his penis to be able to wear a dress, nor does he use his penis to operate the dolls and cars he plays with. His gender does not dictate what he should wear or what he should play with because he does not use his gender to operate or use it. My husband and I are raising him without gender stereotypes.
We’ve never taught it to him “This is for girls and this is for boys” and we never will. Why should we? What difference does it ACTUALLY make? I am indifferent if you agree with what I’m encouraging my son to do with expressing himself. I’m aware that it’s unconventional. I don’t expect you to agree. What I DO expect is respect. What I DO expect is not to be treated like I’m abusing my son. What I DO expect is for people to see that my son is HAPPY and realize that that is all that matters at the end of the day. Because I became the parent he needs me to be, he has more confidence in his little finger than most adults will ever have in their entire life. Because I am the parent he needs me to be, he knows he is able to love and express himself without shame. That me and his father will love him without fail. I’m not only the parent he needs me to be, I’m the parent I WANT to be.
This is my son Cian and he is a five-year-old boy.
**(We don’t believe this is always the case ie: trans-gendered. Some days he says he wants to be a girl with a vagina and we simply tell him, “When you’re an adult, you can certainly make the decision to change to that if you wish”. He’s 5. He also wants to be a Mermaid and Ironman. We’re keeping it simple right now lol. We support our child in whoever they are and look forward to seeing how their gender expression manifests as they age. The most important thing to us is the health and happiness of our son.)