Parents spark outrage after refusing to reveal their toddler's gender

Publish Date
Tuesday, 17 April 2018, 11:24AM

A couple in the US has made the decision to not tell people the gender of their two-year-old child, as part of an effort to bring them up in a gender-neutral environment.

Kyl and Brent Myer are part of the Gender Creative Parenting movement and instead of referring to their toddler Zoomer as a girl or a boy, the child is referred to as a "theyby".

The couple uses the pronouns of 'they', 'them' and 'their' when talking about Zoomer and no one outside of their immediate family knows the toddler's sex.

Hi! We’ve made quite a few new friends since Alex Morris’ #THEYBY article came out in @NYmag and @TheCut this week. We want to introduce ourselves to you and welcome you into our world! I’m Kyl, Zoomer’s mom, Brent is Zoomer’s dad, and Zoomer is our incredible little toddler. Brent and I practice gender creative parenting. We didn’t assign a gender to Zoomer, we don’t disclose their sex to people who don’t need to know, and we use gender-neutral pronouns for Zoomer (they/them/their). We actively work to provide Zoomer with an environment that celebrates their individuality. We expose them to all kinds of toys, clothes, colors and activities and we encourage their interests and self-expression. Parenting this way has certainly reduced Zoomer’s experiences with gendered micro-aggressions and stereotypes. Additionally, we actively strive to teach Zoomer about diversity, inclusion, equality, autonomy, and social justice. We are able to do this with an amazing network of supportive and loving family members, friends, and caretakers. We are very proud and confident about our decision to raise Zoomer this way and we felt a responsibility to be a resource for people who are interested in learning more about gender creative parenting. As you’ll see, there is virtually NO negativity on our account. We are proud of the community we have cultivated here and we intentionally created a space that is accessible, respectful, kind and fun. We’re happy you’re here. Check out our website and my TEDx talk (google “Kyl Myers TED talk”). We hope you find what you’re looking for. Feel free to DM us with your questions. And if you feel so inclined, we’d love to know more about you! ⭐️ What’s your name, where are you from, and what brought you here? ⭐️ 💕 - The Courtney-Myers Family

A post shared by raising zoomer (@raisingzoomer) on

In her blog Raising Zoomer, Kyl said: "The sex does not tell us anything about the child's personality, temperament, favourite colour, dietary preferences, sense of humour, attitudes toward climate change, or any of their other unique traits.

"Just like the fact they have two arms doesn't tell us anything else about them, except they have two arms."

Instead, they are letting Zoomer choose their gender, which Kyl expects will likely happen by the time they are three or four.

But their decision has been met with major criticism online.

A post shared by raising zoomer (@raisingzoomer) on

"Better start saving for a good shrink now, your kid is going to need it soon. Seriously you should be charged with child endangerment," wrote one social media user.

Another said: "Poor kid will be so confused and resentful when he/she grows up."

A third simply wrote: "I see a lot of therapy in Zoomer's future."

"That poor kid will end up with a whole slew of mental issues and all because the loving parents are so much more in love with their dogmatic ideas than their child," said another.

• This is what you should name your baby based on their star sign...
Mum sparks outrage after admitting she still takes baths with her 10 and 11-year-old sons

However, others supported the parents' decision.

"Omg there's so much hate on here. They are amazing parents and I think their child is very lucky," said one supportive follower.

"I love everything about this. Zoomer is so lucky to have you," added another.

What are your thoughts?