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Response to Lost Boys.

Male detransitioners and toxic masculinity.

This article republished with kind courtesy of @STILLTish (twitter handle). The original post can be found at stilltish.substack.com. It was a response to a series called The Lost Boys written by @TullipR (twitter handle) and his original posts can be found at tullipr.substack.com. We suggest giving them both a follow.


I am inspired to write this in response to a gay, male detransitioner who penned a piece on the role narratives about toxic masculinity played in his rejection of his sex. My own, gay son is following the same path. There are some commonalities in their backgrounds.

Some of we parents of gay boys intuited this from a young age. Many of the signs are cliches which some gay men may find irksome. For my own one I got a clue when the neighbourhood boys were having their regular dispute about whether to play football or cricket. My seven year old enthusiastically suggested “let’s do neither and put on a show”! His idea was not favourably received 😂 by the neighbourhood boys.

Later his favourite film was the little mermaid; the name adopted by the controversial charity who proselytise the idea of “trans kids”. He also had a theatrical bent which led to him joining, for a brief time, a youth theatre. He is a lover of old movies and Judy Garland. At same time he was hyper active, a serial escapee from his cot from around 9 months old. He would escape his cot but could not surmount the baby prison gates so we would often find him curled up with his sheet, like a little refugee behind bars. Later he overcame this last barrier and would turn up to claim his place in the parental bed and I never had the heart to evict him.




Flight Risk!

Eventually he graduated to supermarket escapee. A momentary lapse in surveillance would necessitate a tannoy announcement and a frantic search. He was particularly enamoured of the forbidden areas and more than once he had to be retrieved from the staff /storage areas. On a trip to Canada, I finally resorted to toddler reins, only to be told these are considered child abuse over in Tranada Land. (Oh, the irony from the country that promotes double mastectomies for teens). I was much frowned upon by the Canadian mums.


At primary school he played only with girls and loved to bake. He spent hours preparing for his school “master chef” (with his Dad who is the better cook) which his team won. His love of baking persists to this day. It was not long before the bullying began. The school did not know how to deal with it. They seemed to think calling him “gay” was not an issue because we had reclaimed the word. However, it was certainly used as a perjorative term by his tormentors. Finally one charmer graduated to faggot ; this provoked a backlash from my son and we were called to the school to discuss. We went to the school way more times than my son knows but it continued all the way through Primary and onto Secondary School. Sadly, I think he stopped telling us.


Secondary school saw him isolated from the boys and drifting between female friendship groups. During his time mixing with his teen girl friendship groups he became increasingly aware of male violence and sexual assault against females. In School! All the while his own bullying continued and he was comprehensively rejected by his male peers. His tragedy is being both attracted to, and repelled, by his own sex class.

At the same time he was exposed to claims he benefited from “male privilege” which, in his specific circumstances, would have generated, at best, bewilderment. Sadly, for him, this resulted in a desire to distance himself from the caste of males who were his bullies. I believe this was a significant driver behind his claiming refugee status from the male sex class. An over-identification with the female sex class which was driven by empathy and not simply crude appropriation of a female identity.


It would, however, be wrong to describe him as effeminate, rather he is variant in the way he expresses his masculinity. His interests are unusual, for males, but they not for gay men. He was rebellious and non-conforming and he remains a forceful presence, at least on the home front. He displays a fair share of male entitlement and has certainly not identified into a fair share of “womanly” chores! 😂


{Before I continue, a word of caution. I am confident this is an honest assessment of the factors driving my son to seek refuge in a “female identity” and to sterilise himself. . However, I am his mum, so I am bound to seek the best of explanations and any skeptical thoughts you are having right now are perfectly understandable.}


A new men’s rights movement is needed


I do think we need a men’s movement that seeks to address male propensity to sexual violence but also liberates men from expectations driven by unhealthy, sexist, stereotypes. It could address male on male violence and elevated suicide rates. I think it’s a tragedy that some males are driven to make irreversible changes, to their bodies, because of this Gender Identity ideology. I am not about to police the language of male detransitioners who feel narratives about “toxic masculinity” drove them down a harmful path. I am glad they are setting up networks so these young men can support each other and unpick what propelled them. But, and there is a very big but…


Women exist.

At the same time women should not have to soften their language around the levels of male violence against women and girls. Sometimes the language is necessarily direct, even harsh. Boys, like my son, are embarking on a path driven by the most woman-hating ideology of my lifetime. Fighting for our most basic rights is now an international emergency. We don’t have the time, or space, to consider whether our narratives, about male violence, are couched in acceptable terms. It is an unpalatable truth that when you choose to claim to be women you forget we are already here. Colonising our identity as a solution to your difficulties does show a disregard for the impact on the sex you claim to be. By now it cannot have escaped your notice that male rapists are being housed with female prisoners, men are taking sporting medals, autogynephilic men are parading their fetish in the media and women are expected to suck it up.


Parental Responsibility.

I am mum to my one but women are not a universal mother caste! I am heartbroken that our gay boys are engaging in the worst form of self-harm. At the same time I am angry that no thought has been given to what this means for the female sex class. As a parent it is my responsibility to tell my son these, unpalatable, truths. ❤️ means not having to say you are sorry for speaking the truth.



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