Is that a girls toy or a boys toy? Isn’t a question I have found myself asking as a parent. It’s a toy, it doesn’t have a gender, it’s for children to play with boy or girl does it matter what colour it is?
This week I went to the shops with my 4 year old she wanted a new puzzle and I was happy to oblige, she picked the puzzle she wanted and I gave her the money to pay and when we got to the checkout the cashier told her ‘oh you can’t buy that puzzle, that’s for boy’s and your a girl’. I could see her little spirit break before my eyes. What had started out as a nice treat hadn’t finished off so well. I told her it wasn’t important that it was blue and had trains on it if that was the puzzle she wanted that was the puzzle she could have. Ultimately she decided not to take it home with her, which got me to thinking why do we have such pre conceived notions about gender having a bearing on what toys our children play with.
When I’m toy shopping I pick what I think my girls will like, I don’t shop for ‘pink’ toys or female toys. Yes we have dolls and tea sets but we also have tractors and toy cars. They enjoy playing with everything equally. If I had boys I wouldn’t treat them any differently either, toys shouldn’t be chosen because of the child’s gender. I over heard a conversation in a toy shop recently which went along the lines of ohh you couldn’t buy a boy a pram, why not do fully grown men not push their children in prams?
If we want our children to grow up in a modern society that respects woman and treats them as equals why are we ingraining stereotypes before they are even out of nappies.
Let toys be toys and who cares if your daughters favourite toy is a tractor or your sons is a pram just let them enjoy it.