Gender identity can be defined as how individuals identify themselves based on masculinity and femininity or other applicable features. It is more than just knowing one’s sex, it means more as it is an internal thing and not necessarily visible. The correspondence of people’s perception of gender does not always tally as there are complications of what people feel about themselves as they grow and mature in society.
People have different perceptions of who they are as regarding their sexuality and some of them do not correlate with the assigned sex at birth. Every society has a set of gender categories that can serve as the basis of the formation of a person’s social identity even as it relates to other members of society.
As young people grow, they are faced with essential decisions to make, such as those relating to relationships, sexuality and sexual behaviour. The choice they make can influence their health and well-being for the rest of their lives. Young people have the right to lead healthful lives and the society has the responsibility to prepare formative years by offering them with a comprehensive sexual health education that gives them the tools they need to make wholesome decisions even as they grow into adolescence.
Why gender identity should be incorporated in every sex education scheme
This concept brings us the idea of the crucially and vitality of the discourse of gender identity being incorporated into the school’s sex education curriculum. However, the true teaching of gender identity depends on the societal beliefs and what the parents and teachers want the children to believe. On a wider scale, the world sees gender as an umbrella that covers personalities and behavioral patterns ranging from Gender conforming beliefs to Gender non-conforming beliefs. The scope of this article is broadened to reflect the gender preference of people from around the world.
As a child matures, they naturally feel like they belong to a sect that entirely looks like them but some children, however, feel that once they start behaving like their counterparts, they automatically pass to be associated with them. For example, a girl can be forced to nurture the idea that once she trims her hair and plays football then she’s got the automatic licence to brag as a boy. This is the case with many kids out there as this has led some kids that grew up with this mentality to do things very injurious to their physical and mental health thereby displeasing the norms that guide the conduct of the society they find themselves in. These occurrences can, however, be put to check by properly educating the children on gender roles and gender identity.
Some western communities, however, support other forms of gender identities ranging from the straight identity to the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer) umbrella. This form of gender identity has been from time immemorial as the customs of some societies permit it. The proper education of children from a very tender age will go a long way in creating an early awareness and leave them with enough room to choose what gender identity they want to practice and also give them an idea of the implications that proceed.
Importance of children learning gender identity
- It gives them a better understanding of who they are
- It helps them maintain a certain level of consistency
- It creates a proper mental awareness and increases the trust children have for their teachers.
- It prepares the children for the future and at the same time equips them with the knowledge needed to combat any gender discrimination they may be faced with in the future.
- It cures the children of certain levels of vulnerability by showing them what the real portrait of the society is.