Beck Laxton, 46, and partner Kieran Cooper, 44, decided not to reveal baby Sasha’s gender in the hope it would let its ‘real’ personality shine through.
They referred to it as 'the infant' and only allowed their child to play with ‘gender-neutral toys’ in their television-free home.
During the first five years of his life, Sasha has alternated between girls’ and boys’ outfits, leaving friends, playmates and relatives guessing.
But Beck and Kieran have finally revealed his masculinity to the world after it became harder to conceal when Sasha started primary school.
Yesterday Beck, a web editor, said: 'I wanted to avoid all that stereotyping.
'Stereotypes seem fundamentally stupid. Why would you want to slot people into boxes?
'It’s like horoscopes: what could be stupider than thinking there are 12 types of personality that depend on when you were born? It’s so idiotic.
'Gender affects what children wear and what they can play with, and that shapes the king of person they become.
'I start to get cross with it if it skews their potential. It’s not just a harmless bit of silliness, like horoscopes, it’s actually harmful.
'My mother’s very sporty and my dad was very emotional. We’d watch The Wizard of Oz and always start crying, whereas my mum would think we were really soppy.
'So it’s always seemed obvious to me that stereotypes didn’t fit the people I knew.'
Beck and Kieran, from Sawston, Cambs.[England], were so desperate not to prejudice Sasha’s life with gender they didn’t ask midwives his sex until 30 minutes after he was born.
Only a handful of immediate family members were told of the baby’s gender.
Over the last five years the couple have become skilled at evading the gender question at the school gates and walking down the street.
They have simply referred to her little boy as 'the infant'.
Sasha said: 'In the mother and baby group I was the last person to introduce myself and I said "I’m Beck, and this is Sasha".
'And of course somebody said straight away: "So is it a boy or a girl?" I said "I’m not going to tell you".
'I discovered later that I’d been described as "that loony woman who doesn’t know whether her baby is a boy or a girl."
'And I could never persuade anyone in the group to come round for coffee. They just thought I was mental.
'I don’t think I’d do it if I thought it was going to make him unhappy, but at the moment he’s not really bothered either way. We haven’t had any difficult scenarios yet.
Sasha’s gender was almost revealed when he took to running around their garden naked, but Beck was resolute and encouraged him to play with dolls to hide his masculinity.
Finally the secret got too hard to keep and Beck and Kieran were forced to reveal Sasha’s sex when he started school.
keyboard shortcuts: V vote up article J next comment K previous comment