Not at all, Jim. I appreciate learning more about aspects of the world that I’m not as familiar with. Thanks for your contribution to this conversation (and others — they are always welcome). There are times when women talk about men in a romantic/sexual context and refer to them as boys. “I met this cute boy last night….” so maybe what you are describing is similar to that. It certainly is illustrative though that your straight friend assumed that you meant a literal child.

And, no-one says, “Hey, go ask that boy behind the desk if he’s got a deposit slip” if you are at the bank, where you might still hear that in reference to a woman. It seems like the real divide is when you start talking about authority or power or competence.

My purpose is less about being the “word police” because there may be times when it’s just friendly or informal, but more to bring awareness to the fact that unconsciously using that term, even if there is no harmful intent, may very well be perpetuating disempowering beliefs.

Thanks for your thoughts.

Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

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