Monday, July 5, 2010

Gender is for fun


As most other people in the US, we celebrated 4th of July yesterday. But since we are Europeans, our celebrations was of the more subdued sort, a simple picnic under a tree in the park, no fireworks in the evening.
I couldn't help but listening in to another group of people that walked by us at one point. It was two daddy's, two mom's, two little girls and one little boy around the ages of 3-5. The dad's decided to go get some coffee while the mom's were gonna hang out with the kids.
- Do you want to come with us? asked one dad the little boy.
He declined.
- Do you wanna be with the boys, or stay with the girls? said the dad again.
- Play, said the little boy.
- No, why don't you come with the boys? insisted the dad.
To which one of the girls said:
- I wanna come, daddy! Please.
- No, you stay here with the girls. You stay here and play.
- But I wanna come. Please, daddy.
- No, stay here with the girls. Are you sure you don't wanna come with the boys instead of staying with the girls? he then asked the boy again.
It seemed to be a hotchpotch of mixed messages, feelings and general back and forth.

I couldn't help wondering why something so simple turned in to something so complicated?
And why on earth did the dad feel he had to gender-specify the whole project??
Boys and girls, staying or going, having fun or not.
No girls allowed here, only there.
The girl was upset, the boy seemed to feel that he was somehow missing out regardless what he chose, not to mention that he probably felt he had somehow disappointed his dad.

Happy 4th of July!
Please don't gender stereotype your kids.

5 comments:

  1. That is a really sad story. As the father of two girls I can't imagine excluding either of my daughters on the basis of her gender. I can't help but wonder what that dfad was thinking.

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  5. Some people are doomed to be stupid parents who bring up stupid kids. Just be glad you aren't in that boat.

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