The picture for this post was found in Google images.
This is the continuation of the first part that you can read HERE. It’s not about children only but about our whole life in the future.
The division of the sexes is obvious and I won’t talk about differences in our bodies because I think everyone is aware of this. I wanted to focus on other things, like movies, cups, colors, coloring books… Go to any store where you can find baby products. I can tell you right now what you’ll find: aisles for girls – pink with hearts, flowers and princesses all over; aisles for boys – blue with diggers, balls and planes. Both can maybe have some shared colors like grey – very neutral – but when I was looking for a yellow clothing item for my friend’s daughter, I had a real trouble with that because it was hard for me to find something without “handsome man” on it or that wouldn’t be in a set with other things clearly for boys. And yellow is such a natural color that is in our nature!
Target doesn’t separate toys for boy toys and girl toys. Instead, they have just toys. The same with tags and colors in aisles. They’re going to stop using pink for girls, blue for boys and yellow as neutral. They say that this makes sense in case of clothes when it comes to different sizing and fitting, but doesn’t make sense with toys or equipment.
Why is that? Because from the first day after birth people try to persuade girls that they should be delicate, innocent, girly. Boys hear that they should be tough and they shouldn’t cry because it’s unmanly and it’s so important to be a macho. Yesterday I watched a video with a 4-5 year-old boy who was given two vaccinates – one in one arm and second in another one. He was a little afraid but he tried not to show it (you’ll know why in a second). When a nurse put one needle, the boy became uptight. When she put the second needle, there were tears in the boy’s eyes which started to run down his cheeks but the boy really tried not to make any sounds and not to cry out loud. Because his father was by him and was repeating: “don’t cry, be a man! Don’t cry, don’t cry, show what kind of a man you are. Say: I’m a man!” Is a crying 5 year-old boy something that shouldn’t happen? Of course not! But this boy, in this kinds of situations, learn about what his father expects him to be like and if he doesn’t meet those expectations, he can feel that his father doesn’t love him that much anymore, that he’s worse… Even though pain, sadness and crying are very natural emotions and reactions which hurt inside if you don’t express them. Honestly, I’d like to slap this father’s face.
I also read an article that you can read HERE. It’s about a father who built a toy kitchen for his 2 year-old son, then posted pictures of it on the Internet and got a lot of negative comments, like, for example: “you’re turning your son into a gay!” I recommend you to read it.
By the way, I’d like to shout in here that cooking and cleaning haven’t been “women’s work only” for a long time now. And if any of you, gentleman, think differently, then there’s nothing else to say. And no, I’m not a feminist.
I have one more example that seems to be controversial but I honestly don’t understand why. Namely, it’s about a situation when a boy – CHILD – is interested in his mother who is putting some nail polish on her nails or, like I read in one of the comments, when a babysitter is putting nail polish on a 6 year-old boy’s sister’s nails. If a girl asks “can you put some on mine?” she’ll hear something like “sure!” What will a boy hear? Let me guess: “no because it’s not for boys, girls paint their nails, it’s not proper for you!” When he tries to learn why to understand what it all is about, he’ll ask “why?” and then he’ll hear: “…just because“. If anyone wanted to be honest then I suppose they’d have to say something like this: “because I’m afraid that if I let you paint your nails, you’ll become gay/transsexual and also it’s not proper, this is a public norm and I’ll feel embarrassed in front of others because they’ll think that I’m a bad mom/dad.”
I’d like to make things clear – you can’t “become gay” just like this because people are born like this* and painting nails for one time in age of 3, 4, 5 or 6 years won’t make any child want to transfer from a boy to a girl. All of it is much more serious.
Everyone is aware of their sexuality. After 3rh (!) month of life a little baby starts to realize that those two moving things with five little thingies on each are his own arms and hands that he can control. He watches them with a surprise and moves them around and that’s how he starts to learn his own body. Parents touch the baby, wash him, tickle – all of it has an impact on formation of his sexuality and awareness of his own body and the fact that he’s a boy. Do you know that babies after 7 months after birth start to touch their intimate parts using hands and other things and this is completely normal and natural?**
If someone is aware of what I just said then I’ll be extremely surprised if they still think that letting a girl playing with toy cars instead of dolls will make her not being aware of her own gender. SHE WILL BE. If in the future she’ll decide to become a man or you’ll find out she’s a lesbian, won’t have anything to do with toys she played when she was a child.
And the effects of all of it are that later girls on a playground will compete which one’s dress is more shiny and which one has prettier hair. Later on, they’ll compete which one is prettier, thinner, which one has bigger boobs and more boyfriends, which one isn’t a virgin anymore and which one is “weird” because she’s still one. And so on. Guys often are afraid to cry, to show their emotions. They’re afraid that they’ll be judged as a “wimp“, that others will laugh at them. If they cry, they hide and they don’t admit it. A lot of them think that if they wear tight jeans (that they might even like), they wouldn’t be seen as men anymore. And they have to be strong men! And look, this works other way too… Tons of girls put expectations like that on boys. A lot of them say that they don’t want to have a boyfriend who aren’t afraid of showing their emotions because it’s so unmanly. Other ones will think that it’s “cute” when a man cries. What is cute in that? Whereas man will judge women: a lot will say that a girl watching sport games, drinking beer and eating chips is so indelicate… she’s fine to be a buddy but not a partner. Other ones will say that women should wear dresses and high heels because only then they look feminine. I think that unwritten rules and putting them on others are harmful for both sides.
I don’t really like pink and my favorite color is blue. I like tattoos and I have five. I don’t wear skirts or jewelry. I don’t like movies about princesses and I never really liked stories like that either. I had Barbie dolls but I also had cars and plastic soldiers which were used by me and my sister to play a war. My mom didn’t dress me up in pink dresses and she didn’t force me to go to a ballet class. Now I’d prefer to go and see a baseball game than to walk in a shopping mall. Do all of those things mean that I’m not a wholesome woman?
One more example: men who like to wear pink or purple shirt. Or tighter jeans. They take care of themselves and they like to look good – good in their eyes because everyone has their own taste. They feel men and they love women, they have children. And how others see them? As gays!
And all of it comes from believes I talked about above. Most of us were persuaded with all of it from the first day of our lives for a long, long time not only by parents but mainly by media. Especially these days. And so it’s stuck in people’s heads so much that other options don’t even exist for them! They can’t and they don’t want to realize and understand that people are different and not each girl has to like pink and not each boy has to play soccer. They don’t realize how much they form their children’s tastes from the very beginning. Because if a boy has blue and pink clothes, he’ll decide later by himself which color he likes better but if he has blue clothes only, he’ll surely like blue forever. Because a boy in pink isn’t proper! Even when he’s 2. And parents get bullied for that. Man…
Children are children. They explore the world! A little boy can have a phase when he’ll want to wear dresses and paint his nails. And that’s fine, there’s nothing weird in it and it’ll surely change after a few days when he finds something more interesting at the time. Later he won’t even remember that he was wearing dresses at some points. Teaching him or even making him feel embarrassed is the worst thing you could do. The same with girls – they won’t become less girly than they feel if they play with toy cars instead of dolls.
There are man and women. We have different bodies and we function a little differently too. Everything else is well-connected to social norms that were made by companies making movies and all kinds of things because they make money on it! And, I think, it hurts kids who later grow up with the same opinions and then they have their own children. And this circle goes and goes.
And I don’t agree to live the way social norms tell me and to put those things on my kids. They’ll the one to decide what they want to play with and how they want to look, not me.
Talk to you next time!
* Homosexuality – it’s not a disorder, any other sickness or anything like that. People are born being homosexual. A word “gay” isn’t offensive, in my opinion.
** It’s a masturbation normal for children while learning and exploring their bodies. I highly recommend reading about this because it’s very important to know how to (not)react.