gender confusion

My 4 1/2 year old boy is drawn to female characters more so than male characters in his movies and character toys. For example, if he watches Disney's Tarzan movie, he pretends he's "Jane" for days rather than "Tarzan", etc. He also seems to choose girls to play with rather than boys.

This has been pretty consistent behavior for the past 2 years or so. Is this something we should be concerned about or something somewhat common that he will grow out of?

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Mar 04, 2011
Gender Confusion
by: Laura Ramirez

I wouldn't be alarmed at this point that your son is suffering from some sort of gender confusion. It is common for little boys to identify more with their mommies and females in general when they are young because mothers are usually the primary caregivers.

On the other hand, do a take a look at the male figures in your child's life to determine if there has been any mistreatment (perceived or real) that might explain why your son tends to identify more with female than male-related characters.

Whatever you do, don't call your son out or make him feel bad for his preferences at this point. Give him time and space to develop at his own pace.

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