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What Is Your Take on Gender Roles as a Parent?

Does a chic short haircut make a girl a tomboy and her wearing a polo and sweater amount to cross-dressing? Does a lil guy wearing a tutu define his sexual preference? Most parents pride themselves on giving their children a better life than they had, but when it comes to gender roles is this true? Modern society may seem like it's come a long way — especially in certain progressive geographical areas where being different is celebrated — but are moms and dads truly comfortable with their kids expressing themselves? What's your tolerance with your tots?

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Girl-Jen Girl-Jen 7 years
I'm progressive. I let my little girl wear what she wants (within reason; weather and occasion play into my veto power). If she wants to wear a shirt with a fire truck on it, she can. If she wants to wear a fancy dress, she can do that too. If she wants to get a short haircut, that's fine. She can play with "boy" toys and "girl" toys. She pretends to be a boy or a man all the time, since most of her friends and her favorite characters are male. She also pretends to be a princess and a fairy.
FrankiLee FrankiLee 7 years
I don't push anything on my daughter in that way. She has toys of all kinds -- dollies, trucks, a tool set, a kitchen, etc. and I wouldn't ever limit her to playing with only certain toys or dressing her in certain clothes because they were for "girls." Sure, she does have pink clothes, but she also has blue, green, brown, and yellow clothes. She's already very interested in certain sports (loves kicking a soccer ball, swimming, gymnastics) and if she ends up wanting to be a hockey player then more power to her, and if she ends up being a stay at home mom, then that's great too. Whatever she feels most comfortable and happy doing is what I want for her. I don't believe in certain roles for each gender whatsoever.
runningesq runningesq 7 years
Ha, I knew what you meant ;) we all have those days !
amandachalynn amandachalynn 7 years
lol I am off my rocker today! 'I re read what I write' No wonder you can't understand me!
runningesq runningesq 7 years
Oh, thanks for clarifying Amanda ! Understood !
amandachalynn amandachalynn 7 years
Yeah, I was talking about the media and other commenters accusing them of turning her into a boy. I feel the same way you do, running, so I totally get what you're saying. I re read what I write and I could see how it could be a little confusing.
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
Oh, and I always say when I do have kids (which probably won' t be for a while), I'm going to let them do whatever they want. Obviously, I don't literally mean whatever they want, but I'm definitely going to encourage them to dress how they want to dress and express themselves how they want to express themselves.
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
I don't have any kids yet. (I come on to LilSugar on occasion and tell my sister about things I've read on here and I have an interest in and have studied child development, so that's why I'm here, in case anyone was curious.) Anyway, I was going to say, I don't have any kids yet, but my sister has two stepchildren and a child of her own on the way. And her husband's parents are so bad about pushing traditional gender roles on the kids. Her stepkids are seven and eight and pretty like gender normative things on their own. (For example, the girl loves gymnastics, shoes, and clothes while the boy loves playing basketball and watching football.) That could be as a result of what was forced on them earlier in life; I didn't know them well then, but I'm not sure. However, at this point, that's not what bugs me. What bugs me is the way her inlaws force a subservient role on the girl. They praise the boy so much and tell him how great he is and that he can do anything and they tell the girl that she should join her aunt in cooking for the men while they sit there and watch tv. Argh. It's hard to explain the situation well on here, but it frustrates me so much some times and it frustrates my sister, too. We just hope they aren't like that with her child!
starbucks2 starbucks2 7 years
My nephew used to have an obsession with wearing nailpolish a while ago and all the men in the family were seriously thought this could indicate him being gay! Oh my God, how stupid and ignorant. My mother-in-law told him nail polish was only for girls! How unfair! Really, how is a 3-year old supposed to understand that. It doesn't even make sense. My girl is 6 months old and I dress her in a lot of pink and cute little dresses because I love it that way but if she turns out to be tomboy, fine. I might make her wear a dress for special occasions like weddings but in everyday life, if she loves cars and soccer and wearing 'boys' clothes. Fine with me, I just want her to be happy. And Shiloh looks adorable!
Bettye-Wayne Bettye-Wayne 7 years
I never tell my girl certain toys are for boys or girls only. Her dad's side of the family is super conservative, and a few times she's told me she can't play with boy toys. I always correct her right away when she says this.
runningesq runningesq 7 years
Oh, okay Anon. Too many pronouns and I read one of their "they're" as the parents.
runningesq runningesq 7 years
to finish: who cares? Women tend to think female babies are less active in utero than male babies --- but that's just assigning how they think a boy/ girl should behave. Scienticially, there is no difference between pre birth movement.... and yet, girls' kicks are described as "gentle" and boys' are described as "strong"
runningesq runningesq 7 years
I fail to see how a button up shirt, a sweater, and short haircut equate to "turning their girl into a boy." Where, amanda, did THEY say they were turning Shiloh into a boy? I didn't realize you could do gender reassigment surgery for young children ! And she has older brothers --- perhaps she is just trying to emulate them? It's not unheard of. It really pisses me off when children are - from birth - shoved into neat gender roles. If your son likes barbies or your daughter likes trucks it hardly means he or she will - gasp! - turn out gay. And if s/he does.. well, then okay.
amandachalynn amandachalynn 7 years
I love how this is 100% progressive(at the moment) yet there are many posts on the Jolie-Pitts saying their turning their little girl into a boy. I don't get how that computes. I'm progressive. My son refuses to look at tennis shoes until he can wear a pair of sparkly red ones in the store. I just tell him they're not for running, I never say it's because they're girls shoes.
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