Tomboys & “Girlie Boys”

Shiloh Pitt...Dresses how she wants....which seems about right for little kids

This week I wrote a piece for Huffington Post DC which is buzzing around in a way that I didn’t anticipate. Hopefully it resonates with people because I wrote it about my own experience so far raising a 3-year-old tomboy. I wonder why we dump our own gender identity issues on kids as young as preschool? We praise little girls for being tom boys and enjoying “boy toys” like dinosaurs and pirates – but we think little boys shouldn’t like Princess dresses or playing with dolls. My conclusion is this: we are praising girls for male like qualities but calling boys weak for being drawn to feminine things. And I’m talking about preschoolers here. Sending a message that toys associated with boys are strong and those associated with girls are weak, at such a young age, is a slippery slope that makes me uncomfortable. As this piece has built some momentum online, it hit me that we have one celebrity who is really bucking the trend in her little daughter – and that is Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt with Shiloh Jolie-Pitt – can you think of a more public kid celebrity who embodies tom boy? And yet we don’t even have a word for little boys who like “girlie” things.  

I hope you’ll read the piece and comment or share! And as always, for more fun, frolic, Moi Loves Moi, and deep thinking….be sure to “Like” the Wired Momma Facebook page!

One Response to Tomboys & “Girlie Boys”
  1. chrissy
    January 11, 2012 | 7:46 pm

    Loved the HuffPost piece, Monica! Also, these posts remind me of the best episode of Toddlers & Tiaras that I saw last week (do not judge!) which featured a 6 year old boy who LOVED doing pageants. He loved the dress up, the dance, the music, the spray tanning…and his mom was like, “this who he is and as his parents, we support him.” Love it.

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