Prior to having children of my own, I had heard all kinds of rumors about what having each gender would be like. Little girls love everything pink and princess. Little boys are wild. Girls are very emotional. Boys are very easy-going. Girls love ballet. Boys turn all objects around the house into swords. The list goes on. I began to think all of this hearsay seemed to be awfully stereotypical. I was sure if I had a little girl she wouldn’t like princesses and our son would be calm and in control.
And then we had children.
Our daughter is now five and our son just two weeks shy of turning three. (WHERE does the time go??) It has completely blown my mind as to how true some of these stereotypes have become. Our little girl was in fact born loving everything pink and sparkly. She has since grown to love purple and princesses too. She jumps for joy at the sight of nail polish and make up. She is as emotional as a perimenopausal woman. And yes, she even was a ballet dancer for a while and she has certainly fit nearly every stereotype of a little girl thus far. Now, as she has become a little older, she prefers to run and throw and kick and so we have moved into ball sports. Blue and green have been added to her favorite colors list and her love of princesses has faded.
Our son has had his own agenda since approximately negative two months of life when he tried to come into this world two months prematurely. We managed to keep him contained for a few extra weeks before he graced us with his presence yet again on HIS schedule. Since his roaring debut, he has continued to keep us on our toes, meeting all of his milestones also on his own schedule. While he appeared to follow the stereotype and be our easy-going child, he has since learned the emotional throw-downs of his sister and has mastered them. From the time he became mobile, he was our curious one, always trying to figure out how things work, how they fit together, and how to get them apart. From very early on, anything with wheels trumped everything else in life. He became a lover of trains, cars, planes, and dump trucks. While we pointed out the trains and cars to our daughter with not so much of even an ohh or an aah, our son immediately took interest. He will point out a crane and a construction site miles off in the distance whereas our daughter wouldn’t notice if a tractor plowed right over us. As he is getting older, magically all objects around the house are quickly becoming swords. And he certainly is our wild child, with two injury visits to the ER in his first two years of life.
We have always been open to anything and very cautious as to not persuade either of their likes to gender-specific activities, but despite all efforts to keep life gender-neutral, it appears both were born with those natural instincts that have created these stereotypes over so many years. We have plenty of friends and family who have children that are quite the opposite of our two, but it has been fascinating to watch each of ours develop their individual interests over the years.
Do your children fit the gender stereotypes? Which differences do you notice most? Be sure to share below!