I am unique.

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Today Hubbys Mum was meant to be coming over to see the boys.     Once again though at last-minute she decides not to come – I actually suspect she decided before the last-minute but only thought to tell us this morning – by us, I mean she sent a text to Hubby to say something had come up, Hubby is at work, so he had to then rely the message.

Needless to say the boys have been a nightmare as a result.     They have been on the brink of meltdown since mid-morning.     Everything said or done has been wrong and they are just not tolerating each others company.

I tried separating them, but they just agitated independently.

I tried putting them together and telling them if they couldn’t sort it out I wasnt going to interfere, but I wanted them staying next to each other until they could stop bickering.

It worked for a while, as they soon started playing silly beggars.    It was great to hear some giggling.

However, it soon went up a notch and ended up as fisticuffs.

I therefore had to find them things to do that would mean they were occupied.     Have you ever tried making a child do something?     Everything I suggested got greeted with a negative response.    That is until I put on the games machine and the computer.

M is now taking his frustration out on a droid army as he plays Lego Star Wars.

D is taking his frustration out on the computer printer.      He is on the Disney Junior website – http://www.disney.co.uk/disney-junior/index.jsp, playing every game going, and printing certificates at every level he completes.   It is occupying him, and calming him, so I am not complaining – well, not too loudly anyway!

Then he starts asking questions that make me a little sad about the pressures society puts on people to conform.

He started with telling me that one of his girlfriends had told him Jungle Junction was for babies.     I asked him if he enjoyed it, and he said he did.   M piped in that he liked it too.    I then told him if it was something he enjoyed then that was all that matter, and it did not matter if the girl who made the comment didn’t like it.

He then went onto Princess Sofia the first.    He told me he wasnt meant to look at that page or watch that programme.    I asked him why not.    He then tells me all about only girls are allowed to like Princesses and it was wrong for boys to.    I put him straight on that!   I again asked if he enjoyed it, and when he said yes, I told him that was all that mattered.

When he got to Jake and the Neverland Pirates, he asked why there was a girl pirate, as pirates were meant to be boys because they were tough.    I was quite exasperated by this time.

Growing up is hard enough for everybody without society pushing sexual stereotypes on kids.      The boys are not hearing this rubbish from us, but I do notice it when watching adverts for toys on the telly that the boys are exposed to. Since when did a kid care if the plastic toy – I use the term lightly, inside a Kinders egg was a boys toy or a girls toy – and who said girls don’t want cars and boys don’t want animals? Its ridiculous.

It is no surprise kids grow up so quickly when they are being forced to think of each other in ways we never did at that age. To us, we were just a gang of kids who all played together. I doubt any of us thought of our gender roles when still at primary school. It just never came into the equation.

D was quite upset a few weeks back when one of his girlfriends at school was handing out birthday party invitations and he didn’t get one. It turned out it was a girls only because it was a make-up party. Make-up party for 5 and 6 year olds. Now I’m sure they had great fun, but at that age, make-up should be stealing a bit of Lippy out of Mums make-up bag, not learning full on doing your face! My boys often have brightly coloured toenails when they see my nail varnish and ask for it. I won’t put it on their finger nails, not because I am imposing something deeper than, I don’t want them to be bullied anymore than happens already because they are different. Why shouldn’t boys pretty themselves? Oh yes, because society says they shouldn’t!

We as a society complain kids aren’t kids for long enough, but we force them to grow up so fast. I love the fact that M still finds wonder in things that most of his peers have long since out-grown. Just because he is a boy doesn’t mean he has to kick a ball and fight all the time. D on the other hand is far more influenced by other people. He will question if it is acceptable to like something because others don’t or have said something negative about it. I am dreading how full on peer pressure will confuse him ashe grows up.

People are just who they are. Our gender, our skin colour, our beliefs, our country of birth, are all things that go to create amazing individuals, so why do we try so hard to make people fit into a mould that few if any really fit into?

I am trying so hard to let my boys enjoy who they are. I just wish it was more socially acceptable to be an individual and to enjoy the fact we are all unique.

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3 responses »

  1. It’s sad :-( But in the long run, it’s healthier to encourage them to be themselves. As for the children who fit the mould – I think it may look as if they are part of “the in-crowd” but I think it is not a good thing to be teaching children, to fit in with the stereotypes. I’ve known children who were never brought up to express who they really are… and their parents wonder why they have so much trouble with friendships as they grow up. It’s because they have not been taught to value themselves and their differences and individuality. So they can’t value these things in others and they can’t believe that others would value these things in them.

    Great post.

    • What you say is true.
      I think its the old adage of how can you know others until you know yourself.
      My boys were made to be different, so I am not going to make them do anything that firstly I’m not comfortable with, but more importantly doesn’t ring true to the people they are developing into.
      We all have our own path to follow and we need to be true to ourselves on that journey.

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