We all need time with members of our own sex. It begins early in families when the women and girls gather in one room and the men and boys move off to another spot. These warm and supportive gatherings help us see what being an adult really looks like. We feel their support for us.These connections can be strong and warm and fun – spanning generations. Young boys and girls get a deep sense of how the world works. The senior group helps – or at least tries to help. But, for those children who don’t conform to the norm, these gatherings can be fraught with anxiety. How much and how long should I play along with what the group wants? What will happen to me if I break with their expectations?

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