Raising My Rainbow: Adventures in Raising a Fabulous, Gender Creative Son by Lori Duron Download (read online) free eBook .pdf.epub.kindle

Raising My Rainbow: Adventures in Raising a Fabulous, Gender Creative Son

Raising My Rainbow is Lori Duron’s frank, heartfelt, and brutally funny account of her and her family’s adventures of distress and happiness raising a gender-creative son. Whereas her older son, Chase, is a Lego-loving, sports-playing boy’s boy, her younger son, C.J., would much rather twirl around in a pink sparkly tutu, with a Disney Princess in each hand while singing L
Trish

Dec 04, 2015

rated it
really liked it

I have always been curious about how folks discover and then adapt to some kind of specialness in their children—and admit to a real fascination with a child such as Duron’s CJ. At age 2-1/2, CJ exhibits such delight in Duron’s boxed 25th-anniversary Barbie that she opens it and…it was the toy he’d always wanted.

Duron’s first-born son, Chase, was all boy. CJ, her second-born son, had a strong affinity for girls, and girl things. Duron and her husband were surprised and not entirely thrilled at f

Duron’s first-born son, Chase, was all boy. CJ, her second-born son, had a strong affinity for girls, and girl things. Duron and her husband were surprised and not entirely thrilled at first, and tried to steer CJ’s inclinations a little, thinking ahead to all the issues her son might encounter in the neighborhood and in the years ahead. But CJ would have none of it. It seems he was fully aware of what he liked “right out of the box,” as it were. He liked dresses, earrings, makeup and high heels rather than Sponge Bob, soccer, and the manly arts. His mother learned to call this “gender nonconforming.”

Duron spent some time struggling with the notion, searching online, talking with specialists, and offering CJ more common options for sports and clothes, and gradually comes to accept that her child is something very special indeed. The year CJ begins pre-kindergarten, she starts writing a blog to address the online information deficit for her experience as a mother of a gender nonconforming child. Through that avenue she makes friends, exchanges information and resources, and eventually becomes a spokesperson for gender-questing individuals. She also receives a lot of hate mail saying she was a bad mother, but fortunately she felt confident that wasn’t true. She was discovering real time that her son was unique. CJ’s proclivities are bred in the bone, and didn’t appear to have anything to do with nurture.

This is a fascinating story, mostly because CJ is one hot ticket. I don’t know how much Duron jazzed up CJ’s language as she reports what he says, but he has real personality in speech, and in choosing styles, colors, and “drape” in his clothing, even as a bitty child. CJ’s brother Chase takes some heat as the result of having a brother with what others perceive as gender confusion, but Duron herself intervenes when it begins to impact Chase’s school work and social interactions.

Duron narrates the audiobook of this title, produced by Audible. In an interview at the end of her reading, Duron tells us that she felt she wanted to read the produced book herself to give the needed emphases. She knows her sons will read it one day and wanted to make it sound the way she heard it in her head—accepting and ferociously protective of them. She did well.

Duron admits to being anxious and confused herself, so if occasionally she was a little rough on folks that seemed surprised about or mentioned CJ’s clothes or attitudes, we can probably cut her a break. Encountering a gender creative child for the first time might be a little surprising for some folks, and they may need a little time to process it cognitively. I have never encountered a child like her CJ. From the sounds of things, he is one easy fellow to like. She might be able to lose some of her attitude now: a quietly instructive voice on Duron’s part might be more helpful. I wouldn’t want to give up Duron’s very careful yet casual and joyous way of celebrating her son’s differences, though. I guess I can take a little attitude if we continue to hear more of CJ’s specialness.

Duron’s book was enlightening on a number of levels, not the least being the suggestion that her son’s gender fluidity may be genetic. In addition, one learns a great deal about legal protections already instituted for gender nonconforming children, hopefully ensuring that they needn’t be bullied in schools or communities. This means lots of folks have been through Duron’s experience before, though she did not find personal narratives online and felt she had to write her own. Her blog got so much attention that she was approached about writing a book, film projects, among other things. She is still posting: check it out.

The story of this family is really pretty special, in no small part to Duron’s own personality. Everyone would get something out of Duron’s experience: even if you don’t have a child who is gender questing, many parents have children who wish they could play with girl toys or boy toys at some time or another. The clothes might be another matter. I was surprised to hear Duron lived in Orange County, CA. Am I stereotyping if I say I would have thought creative folks around Los Angeles would have inoculated the population against surprise about dressing up? Ah, well. We can‘t all be as fabulous as CJ. What a guy!

…more

Mallory Kellogg

Aug 07, 2013

rated it
really liked it

Was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

From the moment I read this book’s title and saw those awesome pink laces, I had to read it. I wanted to know her story. And I was not disappointed. This book was terrific-tabulous! I can’t say enough good about it.

So this woman has a son named C.J. who is “gender nonconforming”, which simply means he’s a boy that likes girl things and rejects boy things. He loves the Disney Princesses, especially Rapunzel. His favorite color is

From the moment I read this book’s title and saw those awesome pink laces, I had to read it. I wanted to know her story. And I was not disappointed. This book was terrific-tabulous! I can’t say enough good about it.

So this woman has a son named C.J. who is “gender nonconforming”, which simply means he’s a boy that likes girl things and rejects boy things. He loves the Disney Princesses, especially Rapunzel. His favorite color is pink, and he plays with Barbies. What do I think about that? FAB-U-LOUS!!!

At first, his mother and father worry about the stigma it will bring, and it did bother me that they were so hung up on him being gay. But everyone is different, and they did grow out of it. They love their little boy no matter what. It was so sad to read about all the friends they lost because of their openness about C.J.’s gender creativeness, but they also learned who their real friends were.

I related to that boy more than I care to admit. I was, mostly, raised by my gunsmith father. I wore camo, went hunting and helped sight rifles. I was always made fun of for being a tomboy, but it’s what I loved being. That didn’t make me wrong. It made me different. Unique. I love being unique. To this day, I am still the unique tomboy.

Oh, hey! Check out little me! Aw! I was cute at one time. LOL

Anyway, C.J.’s brother breaks my heart because he loves his little brother so much, and he catches Hell for it. He is the subject of bullying, teasing and rejection. I wish the world would learn to just love and accept everyone, not try to destroy what’s different.

This book touched my heart. I cried a little, laughed a lot, and felt myself hurt for the entire family. I found the mother, at times, a little passive in her decisions. And she worried way more than is healthy. But in the end, she always did what was best for her son. She got him Princess parties, dance classes and pretty dresses to wear. She threw herself into loving and accepting her little girly boy. Even the macho dad supported everything his son wanted to do, right down to wearing heels and clip-on earrings. I loved this book. I loved this family.

I think so many people could learn from this story. People need to stop being ugly and start being supportive. Toys are toys. Kids are kids. Stop trying to make kids conform to what you think they should be. Just let them be kids!

And here I thought I’d never find a reason to use this gif:

I stand corrected.
…more