Just as I opened my wordpress page this morning, I was greeted by this post from one of the featured wordpress blogs. I perfectly agree with what the author wrote. Beautifully written essay. A couple of months ago, I made a post asking why boys can’t play with dollhouses and mentioned how Josh would want to play with Danielle’s doll house too. What I failed to confess was every time I have my nails done, Danielle and Josh follow suit too! However, Josh’s toenails are not polished pink but colorless. There are also times when Josh plays with Danielle’s dolls and lullabies them to sleep. Just fairly the same amount of time Danielle is smashing Josh’s car on the wall. Which lead me to the conclusion that boys and girls equally play with whatever toys they see (i.e. if they are on play time). Hence, gender roles are learned from us- their parents and later on from their peers once they start to play outside the house and go to school. I know my parents would be confused if they find out that I allow Josh to play equally with Danielle’s toy sets just as I allow Danielle to play with Josh’s too. I would remember that my parents were stricter on gender segregation than I am right now. So, I buy pastel and ‘girl’ colored shirts for Josh and Jojo. While Danielle is a certified pink girl, I won’t mind buying her blue colored get ups.
While people now are more open and embrace women who defy gender roles by taking on men jobs and doing it better than the men themselves, we feel uncomfortable if boys do cross-over roles. Quoting the post from Over the fence:
But what about the reverse? Although stay-at-home dads are frequently likened to saints for their choice to take on a traditionally female role, I don’t see anyone applauding men who choose to be hairdressers, ballet dancers, or nurses as paragons of their gender, pioneers who are stretching the boundaries of gender definitions. Instead, everyone thinks they’re gay.
Don’t you just agree with this?
I want Josh and Danielle to grow up as happy kids doing whatever interests them. This means I want Josh (and Jojo) to also learn how to cook, clean the house, do the laundry, sew and do other gazzillion of things we usually label as ‘for girls only chores.’ I like men who know how to cook, wear pink and don’t display a minute òf abhorrence for wearing a girl color. If I can just raise both of my sons into well adjusted males adults in the future, then I would consider myself a success.