Thursday, January 20, 2011

To Be Me


Have you ever wanted to wear that outfit or play that sport, but decided against it because it wasn't the norm. Worried what other people would say and what stares you would receive. I believe this has happened to all of us at one point in our lives.

Lately I have seen the topic of gender popping up on the web and in conversations between friends and myself. People asking is it ok for boys to play with baby dolls or to wear pink. It has got me thinking a lot about my own views and ideas of the sexes. I have to be honest that I am a little ashamed of myself that when the topic of boys playing with baby dolls popped up that my first thought was why are boys playing with baby dolls that is a girl thing. After digging deeper and thinking more. I said to myself why is this odd, don't we want boys to learn to nurture just like we want little girls to learn to be a loving mom one day. Then it hit me this is what society has taught us. That girls and boys are suppose to fit into these nice neat boxes and never step outside of our gender box.


One of my favorite bloggers Alex from Late Enough because early sucks wrote a post titled The Yellow Bow today. She wrote about how her daughter N said no to wearing a bow but her son E stepped in wanting to wear the yellow bow and a yellow snow white princess dress to lunch one day. She hesitated at first to say yes. But was brave enough to stand by her and husbands parenting beliefs to allow their children to be who they want to be and not keep them in a gender box.

E wore the yellow princess dress to lunch and got some stares from adults, but the adults dared not to say anything. But a group of middle school girls did do some giggling and probably pointing. E was aware of this and asked if they were making fun of him. Alex made a good point that these girls were just showing what they had been taught by society and maybe by their parents. That boys are not suppose to wear dresses or bows. That these girls to were afraid of being different and wanted to just fit in and conform with society.

Alex was confronted again when E wanted to wear a bow to school. His school is progressive so she thought he would be safe. Well as she is telling his teacher about the incident over the weekend at lunch. E comes running up and is crying that a boy called him a girl. Any mother at this point wants to cry and grab their child up and tell them everything is going to be ok.

E came home happy that day and didn't want to talk much about what happened at school. Then when Alex and her family went to the children's museum he asked his father to pick him out boy clothes from the dress up chest.

It is sad that kids are having to learn life lessons so early about how cruel society can be. That a boy in a dress or wearing a bow is going to be faced with stares and mean comments. But one quote that I loved from Alex's post was


I remind myself to add YET.
Because I believe that it won’t always be this way. Each generation, while perhaps not financially better off, is more open and tolerant than the last.
And in the face of hatred, we learn every year to judge people less by what they wear or who they look like, and more by the person they are trying to be.
But progress is slow. And children are sensitive.
I believe this sums it all up and shows that there is hope for society and that one day everyone will be free to be who they want to be. Without fearing what society and people will say. I too hope that I will change my view and next time I am in a gender conversation that I won't be so quick to say that is a girl thing or a boy thing. 
I highly recommend everyone head over to Late Enough because early sucks and read The Yellow Bow post. Alex is a wonderful writer and this post is a must read. I was in tears as I read the whole post. I hope that I will raise Virginia to be whatever she wants to be either a pretty ballerina, a rough and tough sports player, or a gamer, or all of them together.
You can also head over to Momversation to watch a video on this very same gender topic.

5 comments:

Alex@LateEnough said...

Thank you. For being honest about your own struggles with this and for being so supportive of my post. Both mean so much.

xoxo

Newmomagain said...

Hi Kathy. I found my way to your page from Alex's post today. It was great, wasn't it? So many things to think about as we help our children navigate their way through this world. She does a great job of taking her children's needs into account when making parenting decisions and sounds like you do too. I looked through a few of your prior posts and noticed that you mentioned Cabarrus County. That really jumped out at me as I was born at Cabarrus County Memorial in Kannapolis/Concord. In fact, most of my family was born in that hospital and many of them still live in the area. I was raised in Tampa, Fl, but summers spent in Kannapolis are some of my very best childhood memories. Small world! I look forward to reading your blog.

Absolutely Kathy said...

Hey Newmomagain,
So glad you found your way to my blog. Yeah it is a small world. We have been living in Concord since July of 2010. I love it here so far.

Newmomagain said...

Hi again! I'm still trying to figure out how to get my name and correct website to show when I post. My name is Elizabeth, and my website is newmomagain08.wordpress.com. I'm hoping when I post this that the corrections I made to my Google account will show. BTW - Just noticed another coincidence- my parents have the same birthday too.

Absolutely Kathy said...

Hey Elizabeth maybe we are long lost relatives from a different time, ok that sounded funnier in my head.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

To Be Me



Have you ever wanted to wear that outfit or play that sport, but decided against it because it wasn't the norm. Worried what other people would say and what stares you would receive. I believe this has happened to all of us at one point in our lives.

Lately I have seen the topic of gender popping up on the web and in conversations between friends and myself. People asking is it ok for boys to play with baby dolls or to wear pink. It has got me thinking a lot about my own views and ideas of the sexes. I have to be honest that I am a little ashamed of myself that when the topic of boys playing with baby dolls popped up that my first thought was why are boys playing with baby dolls that is a girl thing. After digging deeper and thinking more. I said to myself why is this odd, don't we want boys to learn to nurture just like we want little girls to learn to be a loving mom one day. Then it hit me this is what society has taught us. That girls and boys are suppose to fit into these nice neat boxes and never step outside of our gender box.


One of my favorite bloggers Alex from Late Enough because early sucks wrote a post titled The Yellow Bow today. She wrote about how her daughter N said no to wearing a bow but her son E stepped in wanting to wear the yellow bow and a yellow snow white princess dress to lunch one day. She hesitated at first to say yes. But was brave enough to stand by her and husbands parenting beliefs to allow their children to be who they want to be and not keep them in a gender box.

E wore the yellow princess dress to lunch and got some stares from adults, but the adults dared not to say anything. But a group of middle school girls did do some giggling and probably pointing. E was aware of this and asked if they were making fun of him. Alex made a good point that these girls were just showing what they had been taught by society and maybe by their parents. That boys are not suppose to wear dresses or bows. That these girls to were afraid of being different and wanted to just fit in and conform with society.

Alex was confronted again when E wanted to wear a bow to school. His school is progressive so she thought he would be safe. Well as she is telling his teacher about the incident over the weekend at lunch. E comes running up and is crying that a boy called him a girl. Any mother at this point wants to cry and grab their child up and tell them everything is going to be ok.

E came home happy that day and didn't want to talk much about what happened at school. Then when Alex and her family went to the children's museum he asked his father to pick him out boy clothes from the dress up chest.

It is sad that kids are having to learn life lessons so early about how cruel society can be. That a boy in a dress or wearing a bow is going to be faced with stares and mean comments. But one quote that I loved from Alex's post was


I remind myself to add YET.
Because I believe that it won’t always be this way. Each generation, while perhaps not financially better off, is more open and tolerant than the last.
And in the face of hatred, we learn every year to judge people less by what they wear or who they look like, and more by the person they are trying to be.
But progress is slow. And children are sensitive.
I believe this sums it all up and shows that there is hope for society and that one day everyone will be free to be who they want to be. Without fearing what society and people will say. I too hope that I will change my view and next time I am in a gender conversation that I won't be so quick to say that is a girl thing or a boy thing. 
I highly recommend everyone head over to Late Enough because early sucks and read The Yellow Bow post. Alex is a wonderful writer and this post is a must read. I was in tears as I read the whole post. I hope that I will raise Virginia to be whatever she wants to be either a pretty ballerina, a rough and tough sports player, or a gamer, or all of them together.
You can also head over to Momversation to watch a video on this very same gender topic.

5 comments on "To Be Me"

Alex@LateEnough on January 20, 2011 at 10:57 AM said...

Thank you. For being honest about your own struggles with this and for being so supportive of my post. Both mean so much.

xoxo

Newmomagain on January 22, 2011 at 9:04 AM said...

Hi Kathy. I found my way to your page from Alex's post today. It was great, wasn't it? So many things to think about as we help our children navigate their way through this world. She does a great job of taking her children's needs into account when making parenting decisions and sounds like you do too. I looked through a few of your prior posts and noticed that you mentioned Cabarrus County. That really jumped out at me as I was born at Cabarrus County Memorial in Kannapolis/Concord. In fact, most of my family was born in that hospital and many of them still live in the area. I was raised in Tampa, Fl, but summers spent in Kannapolis are some of my very best childhood memories. Small world! I look forward to reading your blog.

Absolutely Kathy on January 22, 2011 at 4:40 PM said...

Hey Newmomagain,
So glad you found your way to my blog. Yeah it is a small world. We have been living in Concord since July of 2010. I love it here so far.

Newmomagain on January 22, 2011 at 10:09 PM said...

Hi again! I'm still trying to figure out how to get my name and correct website to show when I post. My name is Elizabeth, and my website is newmomagain08.wordpress.com. I'm hoping when I post this that the corrections I made to my Google account will show. BTW - Just noticed another coincidence- my parents have the same birthday too.

Absolutely Kathy on January 23, 2011 at 1:27 AM said...

Hey Elizabeth maybe we are long lost relatives from a different time, ok that sounded funnier in my head.