Gender steriotypes. This is a big one for me as i studyied it at uni and frankly i think our culture is just plain odd. You give a girl a baby doll but a boy a truck. Do women not drive, and do boys not grow up to be fathers? Here are a few examples i have found on the internet that have made me cheer.
- A little girl wrote to a toy company and complained that the easy bake oven she wanted to buy her brother had a picture of a girl on it which she thought her brother wouldnt like. The company saw her point and the box now has a picture of a boy and girl playing together. Why is an oven a girl toy when some of the top chefs in the world are men?
- A little boy got his mum to buy him some pink striped shoes and wore them to childcare. She was worried about him being teased about it. The only people who noticed were the other parents who asked why she had let him wear them. the other kids loved them and all wanted to try them on. When he got home he told her that he hadnt picked them because they were pink, he had picked them because they were stripy. Who is the nieve one now, the kids or their parents?
- A man let some kids at his daycare center paint his nails. The little boys told him that thats what girls did. He told them that he liked it. A few minutes later all the boys were joining in.
So folks. From this you can clearly see that its the adults who have a pre concieved idea about what their kids can and cant do based on their gender and are the ones teaching it to their kids. They dont know that pink is a girl color, you told them that. They dont know that boys cant dress up as fairies they just like wearing costumes with glitter. Being pregnant everyone keeps telling me that i cant buy any clothes yet because i dont know if its a boy or a girl. I ask them why? Can girls not wear blue, or jeans? Can a boy not wear a shirt with yellow ducks on it? We are infulencing our children before they are even born! I saw a website that advertised girl and boy bibs, the only difference i could see was that the boy ones had blue trim on them…i mean honestly its a baby why would you only be able to dress girls in pink (which i hate by the way). And they tell me that oh all little girls love pink, yeah, because thats all they have been dressed in it since birth. All the girl characters on tv wear pink in kids programs. Boys are sat down to watch bob the builder which only has one female character, of course boys will like trucks after watching it, you sit a girl down to watch it and she will like trucks too!
Growing up i guess i was a mix. I loved wearing dresses and skirts but i also loved climbing trees and playing at the farm with my brother while my sister sat inside. She often asked me why i wore polo shirts, jeans and sneakers to the farm, i didnt look very nice. Ah maybe because i dont want to get sheep crap on my nice shoes and my dice clothes all ripped. Why would i need to look good for sheep?? She of course always did her hair and put makeup on to go out and would just stay at the farm house all day then complain she was bored. But my point is, even though i was rolling around in the dirt i was still expected to look pritty…yet no one questioned my brother wearing the same thing.
I will be encouraging my children to be who ever they want to be, boy or girl. BD has already said our kids will be playing in the mud (his neices hate dirt). And being as he is a truck driver im sure my kids will have toy trucks from a young age, as they should.