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Our socialisation

The effects of socialisation are hard to measure.

When I was very young I saw myself as neither male nor female and I did what came naturally to me. This included dressing in my mother’s shoes and clothes.
I have sometimes wondered how much the effects of being socialised as male have played in my adopting a male role and doing what is expected of me for my gender.

Had I been raised in a gender neutral environment might I have adopted a more androgynous or even feminine demeanour?

I cannot answer that.

I do feel that once we are cemented into customs we become less malleable and eventually our behaviour becomes more habitual. We have not learned how to behave as women in public.

I spent many years repressing feminine traits that I naturally possessed for fear of ridicule. Now when out as Joanna I freely express those tendencies but it took me a long time to allow myself the dignity to exhibit the required comportment, voice and mannerisms that would allow me to blend in as a woman in public.

Even if I am fine with viewing myself as a gender variant male, I am sometimes fascinated with figuring out how much of our gender behaviour is driven by nurture and how much by nature.


  1. Nature vs. nurture. The debate goes back and covers all forms of behavior. Perhaps all things are a blend of the two.

  2. I believe it is a blend of the two as well. it would be interesting to know which predominates and has the biggest influence.


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