The Only Reason to Not Be a Woman (and to Not Get Pregnant)

9 Apr

Part of the survey we administer to 4th through 7th graders involves asking the student about their gender identity.  There is a boys form and a girls form.  On the boys form, there is a question that essentially asks, “Would you prefer to grow up to be a woman?” (Edit: The girls are asked, “Would you prefer to grow up to be a man?”)

Most of the time, the kids squint at it, then move on.  One boy looked up at me.  “No boy wants to be a woman.  Know why?”

“…Why?” I asked him after a moment’s hesitation.

“Because then you’ll get pregnant and your back will hurt.”

Edit 2: I wrote a disclaimer for this and any similar future posts.  To summarize, this is a “That kid is so silly for thinking that’s the worst thing about pregnancy” post.  It is not making fun of anything else.

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7 Responses to “The Only Reason to Not Be a Woman (and to Not Get Pregnant)”

  1. lowsaltfoods April 9, 2011 at 6:51 pm #

    More interestingly, why aren’t the girls asked whether they would like to grow up to be a man? Perhaps it’s because all guys instinctively know the truth – that girls have a wider choice of fashion, can do so many things with their hair and make-up and generally look a damn sight better. What have guys got that women would want?

    • Ashley April 9, 2011 at 6:54 pm #

      No, the girls are asked if they would like to grow up to be a man as well. The only reason I mentioned the boys form is because it was relevant to the story. The girls don’t usually mind the question (or are not as offended as the boys are). Guys have power. It’s insulting to be “feminized” in our culture, so the boys are often freaked out/caught unaware by the question and actually talk to us about it.

  2. Renée A. Schuls-Jacobson May 4, 2011 at 4:49 pm #

    Fascinating that the question is even allowed.

    Hilarious answer.

    More importantly, can you teach me to pack so much punch into so few words. I seem to go on and on and on… 😉

    • Ashley May 4, 2011 at 4:57 pm #

      With younger children, the questions are often more vague, like “When you grow up, do you want to have a family?”, which would imply heterosexuality. Of course, it’s not perfect and a “No” answer could simply mean that the kid’s parents had just gone through a divorce, not that they are gay or bi or what-have-you. The older kids, however, are old enough to handle these sorts of questions without a whole lot of confusion.

      Occasionally, they ask why someone would answer that they want to grow up to be the other sex, but that’s about the only response we get. Usually they ignore it.

      Honestly, from talking to professors at other universities, the most controversial question we ask the kid is: “Is classmate X mean to classmate Y?” Some review boards would balk at that question because it may encourage some kids to be aggressive towards the “mean” classmate.

      Now, you were complimenting me on my brevity? 😉 I thank you very much for your compliments. I don’t know what advice I could offer, because I usually do go on and on, as you see. But for this story, I didn’t feel that a lot of description was necessary (until someone got the wrong idea from my post), so it was just the facts. I don’t know how else to describe the process other than that.

      Thank you again though!

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Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. The Only Reason to Not Be a Woman (and to Not Get Pregnant) (via Why, Zee?) « Not a PhD Thesis - April 9, 2011

    […] Part of the survey we administer to 4th through 7th graders involves asking the student about their gender identity.  There is a boys form and a girls form.  On the boys form, there is a question that essentially asks, "Would you prefer to grow up to be a woman?" Most of the time, the kids squint at it, then move on.  One boy looked up at me.  "No boy wants to be a woman.  Know why?" "…Why?" I asked him after a moment's hesitation. "Because the … Read More […]

  2. Before Anyone Else Misunderstands « Why, Zee? - April 12, 2011

    […] wanted to write a disclaimer to the story I told about testing, before anyone else misunderstands my […]

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