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Study shows fluidity can boost child's self-esteem.

Byline: DR GLENN MASON Psychologist and head of LGBT Sanctuary

There's a lot of debate around whether bringing up your child to be gender neutral is the right thing to do.

A lot of research in this area has come back saying it's good that we're not boxing children off into stereotypical male/female roles.

Some research even says that bringing a child up in this way can improve their selfesteem and their ability to express themselves.

Gender fluidity is all about trying to create an environment of acceptability, one where you can be who you want to be.

As a young boy you might have remembered playing with dolls and being told: "Girls play with dolls".

Is there anything wrong with boys playing with dolls? Absolutely not.

CREATIVE It's letting that child be creative and connect to whatever type of play they wish to connect with.

Just because someone is raised in a gender neutral environment it doesn't necessarily mean it's going to lead to issues around their gender identity.

It is much more complex than that - there are many environmental and genetic factors.

As for the possible downsides, any type of difference could allow bullying to creep in.

But it's lovely when a school is involved because it can open up communication around acceptance.

That too can open up wider conversations around the likes of sexuality and of same-sex parenting.

Above all, the most important thing is to make sure a child knows they're loved, and that they're brought up in a compassionate and loving environment.

There are so many more issues than gender neutrality in a family home which make sure a child has a good upbringing.

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Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Aug 13, 2017
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