The gender reveal party

Jessica Abigail Liebelt


As a transgender woman and writer, I find a lot of opportunities to get frustrated. “The Gender Reveal Party” was written out of frustration. I aimed to draw attention to the ways in which practices and rituals of a cisnormative/heteronormative society can be harmful to trans and gender non-conforming people. I wanted to show the absurdity of assigning a gender at birth based on biological signifiers. Cis society makes an assumption that every child has a gender at birth, all because we are born with different genitals. This assumption is now codified in a ritual called the “gender reveal party”, in which the parents of the child tell everyone about the configuration of the child’s genitals. This is usually done by opening a box to reveal coloured balloons or cutting a cake with a specific colour inside. These assumptions follow trans people throughout our whole lives, and feel impossible to escape. 


Gender; Transphobia; Absurdism; Dysphoria; Queer Issues

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