Should We Celebrate Gender Difference?Danielle
Pink or blue…
Boy or girl…
Anything you can do… I can do better. For the past decades women push for equality starting from birth, but should we also be teaching our daughters to celebrate the difference they have from the little boys they are going to be growing up with?
Last month I was reading an old copy of some parenting magazine I never signed up for but some how ended up getting in the mail for months. They always end up in the bathroom or a random area of the house my husband will sneak off to and read them.
I came across an interesting article about the differences between boys and girls as far as development, and I was surprised by some of the actual findings. Written by a mother who doesn’t push her son towards toys we would associate as boy toys, or influence a healthy shoe habit for her daughter, a lot of it hit home for me. I let my children pick the toys they would like to play with.
And while Addison does have a disgustingly large amount of pink frilly things, she has just as many fire truck blankets, and other gear that may be associated as boy stuff. But the amount of pink stuff doesn’t bother me, because even as a grown woman who identifies as a feminist I enjoy my fair share of pink and sparkly things. And I think my daughter should be able to celebrate being a female and all the beautiful things that come with it, whether it is a nice manicure or a pair of polka dot heels. Of course not anytime soon!
But I never knew that studies actually show starting in the first year of life, there are big differences that some of us as parents would never even realize.
One example is… little boys are more interested in technology, and gadgets. I can certainly say I have seen that in my own little ones in their first years. We always joke that our middle son will be a blogger because his favorite toy just happens to be a laptop.
Another finding from the study was boys are ahead of girls about two months when it comes to figuring out the laws of motion and how things work. I am skeptical about this though because our daughter seems like she is going to be much quicker when it comes to development physically than either of our sons were. Maybe she is an exception?
One last thing about boys… they are far more fearless than girls. Especially once they become mobile. I will get back to you on that one later on this year once Addie takes off. I fear it won’t be long before it happens though! She already wants to run around and chase her brothers!
Now for the highlights on girls…
They are good with their hands… better than boys. Which is kind of surprising since I always thought that men were supposed to be the ones who are good with their hands? Although it does explain how there are so many amazingly talented craft women. Maybe I should start the craft projects with Addison now? She certainly wants to try and use them already!
Girls tend to establish and keep eye contact with you more than boys will in the first year of life. And let me tell you, I can already see that with our little one! She will look at myself, and my husband for hours on end and just oooo and ahhhhhh.
They also talk sooner… I guess the chatty Cathy stereotype may have come from some where, but maybe it is good that women are good at expressing how they feel right?
Addison is already starting to babble, and it is the cutest thing ever. She will sit and hold an entire conversation with you in her own little baby language.
But at the end of the day, we are all going to be good at some things and horrible at others… should we start to teach our children to accept and celebrate who they are, and their gender differences when they are in their first year of life? It only seems reasonable to start the positive reinforcement of who they are from birth!