We live in a world where shows such as “Ru Paul’s Drag Race” rule the airwaves. Behemoths like Target are eliminating gender-restrictive language from their kids’ section, and celebrities are helping to push the envelope when it comes to defining what it means to dress like a “man” or a “woman.” So, doesn’t the term “cross-dress” seem a bit...outdated?
Decked out in hot pink Louis Vuitton jumpsuits, YouTube star and makeup mogul, Jeffree Star, proudly defines himself as androgynous—pushing gender norms and following in the footsteps of iconic performers Prince and David Bowie.
And as the conversation deepens in regards to gender and how we should dress, it’s clear that there’s an awakening for Millennials and Gen Z. For these generations who grew up in the internet era, there are no rules. What we wear is merely an expression of ourselves, nothing more, nothing less.
As therapists, we have to help more conservative couples who may still view gender as a binary construct. In our changing world, the glossary of terms we use in relation to gender and sex seems to grow every day—making it challenging for people who are still trying to catch on.
For many young people today, there is no such thing as cross-dressing, it’s just dressing. That’s it. How do we help to break down barriers so that our conservative patients and clients can help understand the world around them from this point of view?
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