Momfession #12: Playing with dolls

gender rolesI have always, always said that I would not push my children into gender-specific roles. I’m not as extreme as some parents but I am a firm believer that society places too much emphasis on “male” and “female” and I want my children to make choices based on their likes and not on what they “should” like. For my son’s third birthday we presented him with a costume trunk and I made sure that, in addition to the pirate costumes and superhero costumes, there were fairy wings, a tiara, a wig, necklaces and ballet slippers. At age five, he asked me if he could marry his friend Ethan and I gave him a (perhaps overenthusiastic) YES. “Of course you can marry him,” I said. “You can marry anyone who you truly love.” (I then had to clarify that no, he could not marry his sister, or his dad, or his auntie)

But now that I have a girl, I find that I am struggling with the gender stuff. Most days she would prefer to play with her brother’s superheroes than “bake” in the toy kitchen with mommy (my pretend chocolate chip cookies are getting pretty good, but no amount of mmm-ing and lip smacking will sway her). Last night, I sat and braided her doll’s hair while she smashed cars into one another. I caught myself saying, “Kailyn…don’t you want to play with your dolly? Isn’t her hair pretty?” (to which I received an emphatic “NO”!)

When we found out we were having a girl, I was looking forward to having a buddy that I could do “girl stuff” with (even our cat is a boy…can you blame me for being excited about some more estrogen in the house?). I want her to be her own person and make her own choices, but I am definitely finding that it is a tricky balance to strike, especially since I love dolls, fake cooking and all of that other girly stuff. So, I will continue to do my best at encouraging her to choose what she wants. But don’t judge me if I end up buying a Barbie dream house to park her cars in…

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Author: momfessional

Just an unperfect mom in an unperfect world. What`s YOUR momfession? http://themomfessional.com/

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