Being a parent in the age of the internet is a mixed bag. On one hand, you can find a community to go to for questions on everything from the best stroller to what to do if your kid is obsessed with shoving GoGurt up their nose. On the other hand, for every single thing you do, there’s a parade of judgmental a-holes ready to parent-shame you. And it’s even worse if you’re a celebrity.
Consider Charlize Theron, single mom to a child who loves Frozen so much that dressing like Elsa during outings is a recurring joy. Why would anybody have an issue with that? Well, because Theron’s kid is a boy. And apparently boys aren’t allowed to like princesses, much less play princess dress-up because masculinity is so fragile.
Twitter was quick to react. And while Theron’s loving her son—and the way he chooses to express himself—was met with some predictable hate, she also had her share of ardent defenders.
@OptionsCorey @CharlizeAfricaIt's a shame that your masculinity is so fragile that a dress can break it.— Andy (@OhEloy) August 25, 2016
@CharlizeAfrica I meant to say as a girl. It's very heartbreaking and I will pray for ur child. In the name of Jesus I rebuke you. Stop it.— The Boss (@dalastn) August 23, 2016
Charlize Theron's son wanted to dress up as Elsa. Great parenting. Your kid can do what they like, its not gonna "make them gay"— Greeney (@JamesGreeney) August 25, 2016
The tweets regarding Charlize Theron's son dressing up as Elsa from frozen are disgusting, small minded and verging on homo/transphobic.— LEON/CÉ (@LXONR) August 24, 2016
Charlize Theron's adoptive son wanted to wear a dress and Frozen ponytail and she let him and let me tell you I am all for that— Keleesi (@Kelsylockett) August 23, 2016
Is @CharlizeAfrica crazy?? What kind of parent does this to a child?? Why would you adopt this young black boy and then degrade him??— Lesboja78 (@lesboja1978) August 24, 2016
How dare Charlize Theron let her son dress how he wants to dress! How dare she not enforce gender roles that cause ppl to hate themselves!— ロレン The Tactician (@sixmyths) August 25, 2016
Here's a thought: maybe Charlize Theron's son WANTED to wear the dress? Crazy, I know. Letting him have his own identity and all.— ロレン The Tactician (@sixmyths) August 25, 2016
As a kid I wore boys clothes &would be boy characters for school theme days. no1 hated my parents, was just a Tomboy https://t.co/HQUiokyC1E— cara bundy (@bundy_bop) August 26, 2016
(Note: some of the most offensive tweets included unedited photos of Jackson. But we’re not about publishing photos of children without the consent of their parents.)
Theron has not responded to
critics bigots. And she doesn’t need to. Letting her child live his truth is all she needs to worry about here. Besides, Adele’s got her back.
Kristy Puchko can’t even sometimes.