When I first realized I was having a girl – that there was femaleness growing inside of me – I panicked. Girls are tough. I have no doubt that I will also say “boys are tough” somewhere down the line if I am so blessed, but I don’t have a boy – I have a girl. There’s pink. Lots of pink. And while I feel we’ve done a not bad job on keeping the princess shit away from our home (although, dude: Halloween. My bad.), I cannot keep pink from creeping in. And why should I? Would I avoid dressing a boy in blue just because omigawd that’s so gender stereotype?
I’m trying to raise a girl who can do anything – who can change a tire, bake a cake, sing, dance, give a kick ass presentation, write, build, love… No small task. I want her to be comfortable and confident in her skin. As a woman, that means being in touch her version of femininity – whatever that may turn out to be.
Most of her toys are gender-neutral: blocks, Little People, animals. Her only doll is a Kirk plushie from ThinkGeek. Her Christmas presents – from us – are all raucous toy-related: a ball pit, a water mat, trains. K wanted to get legos, but they’re a wee bit small for our girl. I found Mega Blocks – which I think will fit both the big kid’s and the little kid’s desires. Here’s my challenge: pink or primary? There are two options for starter-sets. The girl set is actually a few bucks cheaper than the other. My first thought is to purchase the primary color set. It follows along with how I’ve been purchasing toys – gender-neutral.
What am I telling my daughter by eschewing the pink – that being pink isn’t okay? Am I challenging a gender role because I want her to be raised without its confines? Later, if I have a boy, will it send the wrong message by not encouraging play with all colors – that pink blocks are somehow bad? Ugh, when does gender development really happen? Like many things in this parenting journey, I know I’m over-thinking this. I will continue to dress her in pink when I want, and also in red, blue, green, yellow (but not orange – never orange). Pink is not the enemy. Thinking only pink is where things get dicey. Which one would you buy?