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A little proud

 |  Parenting

I don’t like gender stereotypes and have done virtually everything in my power to ensure that both of my children have access to toys and clothes based on their preferences rather than what society defines as “normal” toys for a boy & girl. I encourage both of my children to be empathetic as well as adventurous and active. However, despite this, Isabel has been massively corrupted by her preschool peers: my daughter is obsessed by everything pink and princess-y. She regularly labels things “for boys” or “for girls” & if something is broken, it’s always a given that daddy would have to fix it for her.

(I get through this by repeating “it’s her choice to like pink” frequently. Twitch twitch.)

However, this morning I felt like I had achieved a teensy goal when, in driving past the River Severn as we do every morning, she commented that if someone fell in the river the firemen and fireladies would come and pull them out.

Fuck yes, equality for women :)

Jem Turner jem@jemjabella.co.uk +44(0)7521056376

6 comments so far

  1. Belinda said:

    Haha, that’s adorable!

    I don’t think it’s a problem if you kids are given the choices of “boys” toys and “girls” toys and decides to pick one over the other. It’s only a problem when parents actively say things like, “oh don’t play with that, that’s for girls” to their boys and vice versa. Those pesky pre-school peers though!

    • Jem said:

      Exactly! And chances are those pre-schoolers lecturing her on “boy’s toys” and “girl’s toys” to the point that she thinks its true, probably only picked it up from their parents. Makes me cross :[

  2. Dee said:

    Whoo hoo for gender equality and gender neutralization! But damn those preschoolers. Grrrr. Can’t there be, like, a school from Preschool-18years where all the parents teach gender neutral ideas? Then all the gender neutral kids can play together and not be corrupted! #wishfulthinking

  3. Clem said:

    It’s hard to keep outside influences from reinforcing gender roles and I don’t think her preference for pink is a failure on any individual’s part. These things really are deeply engrained in society. But as she and Oliver get older I think your influence and mindfulness will become more apparent. I was definitely guilty of the “boy toy/girl toy” thing when I was little, but my parents raised me the same way you’re raising your kids and I’m past that now!

  4. Raisa said:

    When I worked in a preschool, I always encouraged the kids to play with whatever they liked (me loving “boy” things as a kid, I wanted them to have fun as well). I got a lot of flak from the other teachers. They were worried the parents would get offended. Sigh.

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