These days, flouting gender conventions extends even to baby naming: first names that were once unambiguously masculine are now given to girls. The shift, however, almost never goes the other way. That’s because girls gain status by moving into “boy” space, while boys are tainted by the slightest whiff of femininity. “There’s a lot more privilege to being a man in our society,” says Diane Ehrensaft, a psychologist at the University of California, San Francisco, who supports allowing children to be what she calls gender creative. “When a boy wants to act like a girl, it subconsciously shakes our foundation, because why would someone want to be the lesser gender?” Boys are up to seven times as likely as girls to be referred to gender clinics for psychological evaluations. Sometimes the boys’ violation is as mild as wanting a Barbie for Christmas. By comparison, most girls referred to gender clinics are far more extreme in their atypicality: they want boy names, boy pronouns and, sometimes, boy bodies.
Relationships are so much harder these days. Conversations became texting. Arguments became phone calls. Feelings became subliminal messages online. Sex became way too easy. The word “love” gets overused and taken out of context. Insecurities have become our way of thinking. Getting jealous is just a bad habit. All trust is lost. Cheating is now an accident. Oops! Being hurt became natural. Now running away is the only feasible option.