Gender Barriers.


We’re expected to raise our children a certain way.  We are told that girls play with baby dolls and boys play with monster trucks.  Girls wear pink and boys wear blue.  Boys climb trees and girls play dress up.  Boys like bugs and girls like tea parties.  Girls cry and boys don’t.  Boys fight and girls don’t.

Girls are one way.  Boys are another.

I am a girly girl sometimes.  I like sparkly jewelry and get my hair done.  I’m also elbow deep in a car or covered in mud from riding quads.

My 4 year old daughter likes to dress up as a princess and do pretend make up.  She also likes to climb fences and has tried to adopt every spider in our house as her pet.  She introduced herself as tinkerbell today and in the same breath asked to make mud castles.  She loves pink but thinks boys look good in pink too.

Next summer she’ll be learning how to ride a quad.

I mentioned that to a friend of mine, and then watched as she watched my kid streak across the house naked and covered in mud from outside.

“Wow Sarah, you sure have  little boy on your hands.”

I do.  It’s the not statement that bothers me, it’s the way she said it.  There was confusion and a hint of disdain in her tone.

“Doesn’t she have any barbies or anything?”

Well yes, she has baby dolls but the kid likes motorcycles and quads, so why not?


Why do we have to follow some imprint for our children?  I am curious as to why I should be encouraging barbies and make up when she’s more into mud and bugs at the moment?  If she wants to play make-up tomorrow, then sure, but as of right now she is asking to dig a hole and look for worms after school tomorrow.

I’m okay with that.

I’m okay with her developing her own interests.  I’m okay with her in a dress.  I’m okay with her in overalls.  I’m okay with her playing dress-up and I’m okay with her getting stuck in trees.  I’m okay with her no matter what she likes.  Who she likes.  What she wants to be when she grows up.

It’s called acceptance.  Our children need to be encouraged to like what they want.  To persue they’re own interests.  To be their own people.  Regardless of pre-determined gender roles.

Simple as that.


5 thoughts on “Gender Barriers.

  1. JenN-Moo

    Mason’s favorite color was pink for a LOOOONG time. Until some kids at school pointed out it was a girls color. And he had a favorite doll (it was a boy doll, but he loved it!). *shrug* Cooper wanted to be a pink dinosaur for Halloween. He changed his mind. lol

  2. Amanda

    My favorite color was pink, then black, then pink again. I played barbies, my little pony, had treasure trolls. I climbed trees, built forts, played with boys. I was a tomboy for the longest time. It’s good that you encourage and support everything she does :)

  3. My take is just as yours you should accept your child as they are. As to boys being boys and girls being girls, blech! I tried to teach my boys to be sympathetic and to recognize their emotions. My girls I tried to expose them to not being overly emotional to learn how to do things that are boylike and be physically strong. When you get right down to it, I think the girls need to be toughened up so if they don’t have a male in their life they need to call a guy to fix it. Just like you fixing your call. I love that!

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