When I was eight years old, my imagination was a bigger part of my experience than the “real world” we all share.
It was fed by things in the “real world”—at school, on TV, in books, by friends and family. As a result, I loved Star Wars, gun games and dinosaurs.
Frequently told off by my parents and teachers, the dinosaur roars must have been tiring, but living more in my imagination than the “real world”, it was on the whole worth being reprimanded for.
At eight years old, I was a dinosaur, because they were fed into my imagination; it was a word and concept stimulating enough to identify with. Certainly enough to curl my little T-Rex arms up and scream so the whole playground could hear.
At eight years old, my younger sister was a dog. I remember seeing her walking into assembly, tongue out, paws akimbo, pacing around in a little circle before sitting down on the floor.
Now eight years old, my niece told my Mum that she is a lesbian.
Fortunately, Mum is a wise, haggard and beautiful old bag, who duly explained that you can love your friend without being a lesbian. Mum explained that her mother wasn’t interested in boys until she was a teenager, that she had her own best friends – but that didn’t make her a lesbian. “When you’re a teenager and your hormones kick in, you might be chasing the boys around!”
Again, fortunately, my niece is bright and has a well-fed imagination – she is a fairy, and quite often a mermaid.
Is it necessary to feed terms of a fundamentally sexual nature to the impressionable imaginations of seven and eight year old children?
A gay couple regularly babysat me from when I was a baby until I was a dinosaur. I don’t once remember thinking it weird that they were together; they were just people; I was just a dinosaur. Spending public money and time at school to direct my impressions of them would have been unnecessary. I don’t think I was lacking a lesson at that tender age, teaching me about the birds and the bees and the LGBTs.
I’m all for adults being straight, for being gay, lesbian, being whatever the hell they want to be; many of my friends and countless of my acquaintances sit outside the typical bandwidth of relationships – and I don’t care.
But children of seven and eight years old? I do care that they remain children.
And by children I mean dinosaurs, dogs, and fairies.
5 thoughts on “Dogs, Dinosaurs and Lesbians”
Made me chuckle mate, and fair point. hope you’re good!
I agree just let children be children for as long as they can too soon they become adults with all the worries that come with it
Great post. Need to reach the balance of not over feeding children with information that as you quite rightly point out you more often than not come across in day-to-day life. I feel that the LGBT community is maybe more trying to defend and counter balance all the homophobia etc out there and get their input in there first. Just need to get rid of all the idiots that spout misinformation and discriminate I guess.