For folks who don't know, the LRU is a compilation of items from the past week that may be of interest to VPers and is intended to broaden the kinds of conversations we have here.
To submit articles for next week's round-up, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have additional articles you'd like folks to know about this week, feel free to comment directly to this post.
As a reminder, in lieu of trigger warnings, I use keywords describing the themes of the piece. Please skim these before deciding to read the excerpt or click through for the full article. Outside sources are not safe spaces, and mainstream sources' comments should almost always be avoided. The links I highlight don't necessarily reflect VP's views, or even my own, for that matter.
This week's round-up includes: explaining genitals and gender to children; employers, birth control, and the Affordable Care Act; gender-exclusive children's books; and deciding whether to parent.
- Thanks for the tip! by M. A. Melby at The Transadvocate (Keywords: sex, anatomy, children, parenting, LGBTQIA issues)
What tying “penis” to boys and “vagina” to girls does is make genitalia part of what defines a “boy” and a “girl” for the child. Children are in the cognitive stage where they trust authority to define what things are, what is right and wrong, and what the fundamental models of the universe are. Those early models and definitions, if reinforced, become robust and are very difficult to reassess even into adulthood.
- My Employer Shamed Me for Using Birth Control by Jessica R. at the ACLU Blog (Keywords: Birth control, Affordable Care Act, health care, employers)
The Affordable Care Act makes effective birth control more affordable for millions of women by requiring employer-based health plans to include no-cost coverage for contraceptives. On March 25, the Supreme Court will hear arguments from companies that want to violate this law. Here is a story from one of the many women whose boss has tried to deny her birth control.
- Gender-specific books demean all our children. So the Independent on Sunday will no longer review anything marketed to exclude either sex by Katy Guest at the Independent (Keywords: Gender, sex, children, books)
There are also those who argue that children are set upon their boyish and girly courses from conception, and that no amount of book-reading is going to change them. In fact, there is no credible evidence that boys and girls are born with innately different enthusiasms, and plenty of evidence that their tastes are acquired through socialisation.
- Birthing Sofia: On Whether to Mother by Diahann Reyes at Stories from the Belly (Keywords: pregnancy, parenting, desires, pressures, aging)
Back then, I wasn’t interested in motherhood anyways, so I was happy to take her advice. But by my thirties, the time period for when I thought my biological alarm clock was set to go off, nothing happened: no urges to start a family, no daydreaming about what it would be like to have a child—absolutely nada—although I did go through the motions.
As always feel free to share your thoughts on any of these articles, along with whatever you've been reading or writing this week!