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A poem about gender roles I wrote as an egg.

    Like a girl

From the beginning, girls and boys
Are raised in wildly different ways:
We're meant to play with different toys,
We're shamed or praised for equal traits.

Though I've been groomed to be a man,
Deep down, our nature can't be changed.
They hope I'm careless and brave,
                and aggressive and bold,
                and well-spoken and suave,
                and detached, even cold.

But I'm sensitive and frail.
I'm not an alpha male.
Whenever I try it, I hopelessly fail.

Girls have plenty they can wear
Cute or stylish -- it's all there!
A fine dress, and heads are turned;
A cute skirt, their frown's adjourned.
The gray manhood can't compare,
And it frankly isn't fair...

I can't think of a plan
For what's bound to unfurl.
They're expecting a man,
Yet I think like a girl.

Note: I've written this poem before realizing I'm a trans woman. I have since learned there's nothing wrong with manhood -- the problem was that I'm not a man, myself.

-- Lady Scarecrow

  • Thank for sharing, Lady Scarecrow. I like your poem a lot. It makes me reflect on society.

    The gender roles (or rules) in our society are absurd. You go into a store: accessories socially approved for males are on one side, accessories socially approved for females are on the other side.

    What year is it? Are we incapable of nuance?

    As I see it, the enforcement of gender roles/rules is just another means of social control, like racial terminology ('Caucasian', 'African-American'), like caste systems, like transfer of intergenerational wealth.

    As a gender-expansive person, I find it very oppressive. When I walk the streets, I get the sense that even many cishets aren't served well by it.

    Who's more obsessed with gender, people who don't identify with their assigned gender at birth or people who require everyone to identify with their assigned gender at birth?

    I'm male. I'd love to walk around with painted fingernails. But some people would be more comfortable with me walking around with a gun.

    I'm still figuring things out. Presently my strategies to live in this unhealthy world are non-disclosure and, per Voltaire's wisdom, cultivating my own garden

    • Thank you. When I wrote this poem, I did it out of frustration because everyone was asking me to be something I wasn't. Much like you, I was still figuring things out. Nowadays I have a much clearer view -- not only of who I am, but also of gender as a whole. I absolutely agree with you, gender roles are oppressive and absurd. I believe they should be abolished. Gender identity, on the other hand, is innate to us all, even if most people (i.e. cis people) don't even realize they have one. But cis or trans, AMAB people should be allowed to wear dresses and paint their nails if they want to. Navigating this needlessly cruel and restrictive system is hard to us all.

      Anyways, good luck to you, and stay safe.