I was on Facebook when I saw this image:
Very cute kid with what I think is a fashionable taste in shoes, but here lies the issue with me.
He’s five. Only five years old right now and how is he going to feel when he’s ten or twelve or sixteen and has pictures of him wearing pink shoes?
I guess this stems from my own personal problem because when I was young, we were allowed to dress ourselves before I would ever begin to let a child truly pick their own clothes out. Now with Emma, Alice’s daughter, she is three and I always let her pick out her clothes, but I guide her. I’ll let her choose the pants, skirt, or shorts she wants and then I let her point to which shirt she desires, but if it doesn’t match I tell her and she’ll point to another one.
I have a picture, I wish I could share with you, that I hate from when I was about six or seven years of age. There was this horrible outfit I loved to wear and my mom fucking let me. It was a bright yellow shirt with a toucan and I wore shiny neon pink skimps (leggings is what they can be referred to nowadays) and this picture is me posing all sassy like and it’s horrible. I hate that picture.
I’m on the fence with gender nonconformity. Half of me is for it, the other half is a bit more hesitant. Kids constantly are changing, they don’t have a true identity to conform to until they’re of a certain age. What Sam likes now, Sam may hate tomorrow. And that’s cool, but I think the parents should guide their decisions a bit because they only are kids.
Now for Sam, his mother at the store did tell him that the shoes were originally made for a little girl in mind and Sam didn’t care. He’s a ninja and to him ninjas can wear pink if they like. He went to preschool proudly and only got positive remarks from his peers and teachers. And I am grateful for that because the reality is what makes me hesitant about gender nonconformity is the possible bullying and the possible regret of, “MOM! why would you let me wear that???”
I’m not a parent, but it has me questioning as a parent where do you draw the line? How is it decided when they should be able to make their own choices and when you need to step in?
Fill me in all you parents out there. I’m curious to know. And I also want everyone’s thoughts on gender nonconformity. Go!