Eternal virgins: why do girls become men in the Balkans
Many eternal virgins claim that since childhood they felt like boys, and decided to become a tobelie on their own. Durjana from Kosovo first played football with the boys, and then went to school with them, because in the 1930s girls did not receive education. Stanka Cerovich started smoking at the age of 5, at 7 she plowed the land with her father and learned to shoot, and when she grew up she spent time in men's companies with a glass of brandy and card games. “Since childhood, it was easy for me in the male role. But the damned fate did not let me be a man, ”she said in an interview. A similar phenomenon occurs in other countries, for example, Afghanistan and Pakistan: there, in families where sons are not born, one of the daughters becomes a boy – however, temporarily. She returns to the female lifestyle at the age of 17–20, when it is time to get married. Such girls are called bacha-posh – “dressed like a boy”.
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