On this week's 'Parenting' segment on the Moncrieff show, one listener sought advice about her son's unconventional interests and not fitting in.
Joanna Fortune, psychotherapist specialising in Child & Adult Psychotherapy, joined Moncrieff to answer this and other listeners' questions.
"My son is ten and a quiet, sensitive boy."
"He’s in a small rural school in a mixed year with both third and fifth classes in with his fourth class.
"He works hard in school, but isn’t interested in PE, after school sports, gaming or scouts – and these are the activities most of the other boys care about.
"He’s feeling isolated because he doesn’t want to play with them, but he feels embarrassed if he hangs out with the girls doing art or drama etc."
"He says he feels weird and not like other boys, and I tell him he’s just himself and that’s perfectly fine, but he doesn't believe me."
"I’m not into stereotypes and have always railed against labels, but I’m wondering is he gay?"
"Should I worry at all about this at his age?"
"I wouldn't worry about it at any age."
"No matter how old our children are, we should always hold a space for questioning, space for exploration about all aspects of ourselves and our identity."
"It's really interesting here because he's in a really small school where you've got third, fourth and fifth class in one room."
"There's lots of different age groups so it can be hard for children to find their fit with peers when there's different developmental stuff going on all at once around them."
"There's also quite an overt gendered approach to activities here."
"In truth, they're just activities, and we're the ones - society - that puts a gendered lens on that."
"There is absolutely no reason that sports are boy-oriented or that drama, art is girl-oriented."
"He should be encouraged to lean into what his passion in, what sparks joy for him."
"Get him to think about what he wants to do, rather than who he wants to do it with."
Main image shows a lonely young boy sitting on the sidelines. Picture by: Andrea Thrussell/Alamy