The Princess Boy’s Father

By , January 7, 2011 2:08 am

Would you allow your 5-year-old son to wear dresses?

On Monday morning’s “Today Show” (full disclosure: I worked there several years ago), co-host Meredith Viera interviewed Cheryl Kilodavis and her son Dyson. Five-year-old Dyson likes to wear dresses. Cheryl wrote a book called “My Princess Boy” which is as much about the public’s acceptance of boys who dress like girls as it is about her own acceptance of it.

Kilodavis seems very supportive and loving towards her son, but I wanted to hear more from Dyson’s father. Dean Kilodavis had a brief soundbite in a taped segment before live interview. He said, “It’s not contagious, he’s just like any other kid. He plays checkers, he plays in the trees. He just likes to do it in a dress. Big deal.”

It’s great that the whole family supports Dyson, but was it easy for him to arrive at that conclusion? Viera read part of a letter Cheryl Kilodavis wrote to family and friends about Dyson wearing dresses. “I had independent values, deep cultural and religious perceptions of how my sons as males should look and behave. This became a journey in self-awareness and re-evaluation of stereotypes and perceptions of what I thought I believed.”

Because spouses often share “cultural and religious perceptions,” what was Dean’s initial reaction? Did he have to re-evaluate some of his stereotypes and perceptions?

Did this father ever feel uncomfortable seeing his son wearing dresses?

Yes, the story is about this mother and son. And maybe this princess boy’s father never had a problem with it. Maybe time ran out and the question couldn’t be asked, but it’s one I would have liked to see answered.

See the full interview here.

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