Monday, August 31, 2009

Is Gender Specific All Bad?

Over the years there's been controversy about the toys we buy for our children. I would say it's come and gone since our kids were little and that's over thirty years ago. The more modern, evolved thinkers mostly didn't want children to be given gender specific toys. The feeling was sometimes that this caused the child to fit in a mold that they might not have fit into otherwise. For example, if you give a little girl barbies and baby dolls, she might miss her true calling to be a truck driver. A little boy who just gets matchbox toys and race tracks might not turn out to be a nurse which could have been what he was truly destined to be. I say poppycock.

After watching children and grandchildren for over thirty years, my feeling is that children gravitate toward what delights, interests, and excites them. And usually, although not always, their choices end up gender specific. However, almost all children stray from their gender specific toys and become interested in other things at least temporarily and this is fine and good.

But all this discussion is just an excuse to include the following pictures which do make me think of gender specific toys and how perfect they are for the gender of the child who received them. I recently wrote about two of my granddaughters who just turned three. One of them, Tessa Mary, received a toy kitchen for her birthday. She got lots of other presents but they were erased from her memory the moment she laid eyes on this most magnificent of all gifts.

And she didn't waste anytime getting busy with her cooking.

And one of the best parts of the whole present was watching her parents' delight in their daughter's happiness with her gender specific toy.

Don't get me wrong. They weren't delighted because she was playing with a gender specific toy. They were delighted because she was so excited and happy. If she'd have been playing with a dump truck, I'm sure they would have had the same big smiles on their faces...pretty sure. Maybe they would have. Hmmmmmm Well, maybe their smiles wouldn't have been quite as big but it would have been fine.

Let's just say she loved her kitchen and everybody was happy!


  1. I think the only time gender specific is bad is when you disallow a child of the opposite gender to enjoy that, too. We got Luke a doll after Tommy was born, and he LOVES it. I know some people would say that boys shouldn't play with dolls, but if he likes it, who cares?
    She looks so cute and excited over her kitchen! I had and loved one as a little girl, and now I don't cook at all. Go figure!

  2. I agree with you totally. Congratulations on Beth's wonderful news!!

  3. Awww, she's soo itto! I can tell you that I did not do Jedi mind tricks on her to love the kitchen- she discovered it in Target all by her little self! However, you know she LOVES her cars almost as much.... :)


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