Elena

I didn’t really wear skirts until late high school, and generally only wear makeup to cover up acne. When my older cousin came to visit once, I ended up playing football outside with the guys instead of learning how to straighten my hair. Tomboys have so much more fun, but unfortunately we often receive so much more crap too. 2 of my previous boyfriends, upon finding out about how and why I was bullied as a child, decided that I was actually bisexual and just didn’t know it yet. My most recent ex believes I cheated on him with an old girl friend of mine. In high school, my first boyfriend brought about peer remarks like “Oh? You’re with —-? But, I thought you were… I mean… I just didn’t know.”  I guess I did fit the stereotype back then, if there is such a thing. Mostly jeans, theatre nerd, soccer player… It doesn’t really help that I’m better with tools and home repair than most guys I know. Within some Christian circles, this makes people assume that I’m anti-family, anti-men, and am acting against Scripture. I was once shunned by several men and their families on a mission trip for helping to carry debris. But enough rambling. There is a point to this: You see, most of the assumptions people make about my sexuality, beliefs, or hobbies based on my decisions to wear (or not wear) a floral dress don’t really bother me much. My childhood bully story has a relatively happy ending.
I transferred schools in second grade. My favorite sport was softball, I loved going camping, never let my mom comb my wild hair, and generally preferred boy friends to girl. Within the first week, the three main bullies in my class labeled me as gay. Any girl found talking to me was labeled my girlfriend, and therefore quickly stopped befriending me. I didn’t actually know what that word meant, and so at first all I cared about was how alone I felt. I didn’t learn till later that my prepubescent sexuality was being determined by my peers based on my hair and ability to throw a softball. I remember being asked if I wished I were a boy. I remember some of the girls refusing to go to the restroom with me. One boy would write “F*** you” in the dirt and point at me. Twice I can remember a group a boys trying to punch me in the face at recess. The one girl I did befriend was with me at the time, and slapped one of the kids. I ran. Finally, after several intervention attempts, my teacher brought the 2 boys most responsible for the hate campaign outside one by one. Then she brought me outside with them, one bully at a time. She told me to yell at them. She told me to tell them what they were saying, why it hurt, what I thought of them, and that I never wanted them to do that again. She told me to yell it as loud as I could, and that it was ok if the other classes heard me. So I did. First it was pretty soft, but eventually I was yelling with everything I had.
The yelling wasn’t really what empowered me though. It was the fact that they stopped bullying me afterwards. I could talk to everyone again. They left me alone. I felt so in charge of myself that what other people thought stopped mattering. Most girls in similar circumstances have had it much worse. People started up the same bullying crap again in middle school (heaven forbid a heterosexual girl not wear ribbons in her hair), only then I found it funny. Yeah, I still have insecurities, and the stuff I mentioned in the first paragraph still stings. But, thankfully, it’s not as bad as I suspect it would’ve been without that experience.

Amber

I’m not sure if this is a tomboy story, or just a weird story.

As a young kid, I practiced aiming my streams of pee on unusual targets. Often after showering, I would throw my towel onto the floor of my room, take aim, and just piss standing over it. Towels were my favorite because they cushioned that sound of peeing from a distance and automatically cleaned up! Despite lacking an elongated urethral canal to grip with, I’ll say I have a pretty good marksmanship. It comes in handy during long road trips along highways with nothing but trees and empty bottles.