Demi Lovato has branded gender reveal parties as “transphobic” in a new Instagram post. The “Still Have Me” singer took to the social media app on Thursday, February 25 to say that they believe celebrating a child for being a “boy” or a “girl” is inherently discriminatory as it implies that if you identify as anything other, then it’s “not natural or organic.”
- Lovato made the post to educate people. “Transphobia is not just about prejudice against individual trans people, it’s also a way of thinking that understands non-trans people as more natural/organic and erases everyone else,” they wrote after sharing a post from nonbinary author and activist ALOK. “These ideas, like the gender binary, fuel mistreatment of all people, but especially trans and gender non-conforming people. Gender reveals are based on the illusion that genitals = gender and that there are only two options ‘boy or girl.'”
- There’s a difference between sex and gender. As Lovato continued, the reproductive organs you’re born with do not always reflect your gender identity, which is why labels like boy and girl can be exclusive to those who don’t fit within either. “This definition erases the fact that there are boys with vaginas and girls with penises and that there are people who are neither boys nor girls. The idea that sex is based on genitalia is inconsistent with science,” they continued.
- So why are gender reveals so problematic? After all, there should be room for all kinds identities and celebrating those who identify as boy or girl, which seems a large part of the general population, isn’t necessarily saying being anything else is wrong, right? Lovato explains: “Gender reveals require not just the invalidation of transness, but the impossibility of transness. The assumption is that the baby is cis. Cisness is positioned as the default and everyone else is understood as derivative of it.” They added: “People are taught to experience themselves and one another as ideas of how they should be, not the reality of what they are and what is… the irony is that trans and gender non-conforming people are accused of advancing a gender ideology, when in fact we are trying to escape it.”
- Not everyone agreed with their sentiment. Many of Lovato’s followers disagreed with the idea that gender reveals are discriminatory, with some insisting they’d gone too far and that not everything is offensive or an attack on minority groups. However, Lovato feels strongly about this topic and they’re not afraid to speak out on it.