Boys ‘Don’t Cry’ And Girls ‘Aren’t Strong,’ But Parents Can Change The Conversation
Raising kids comes with a lot of challenges, but one roadblock that many parents don’t expect is dealing with gendered expectations.
Before children are even born, people begin to make assumptions on who they will be based on their gender. Girls get pink clothes, boys get blue. Girls like princesses, boys like sports. Girls are emotional, boys are strong.
There’s only one problem. These out-of-date ideals are simply not true and are in no way linked to gender. As a result, many parents are fighting back and changing the conversation. Their aim is to raise well-rounded children who become high-functioning adults. They refuse to place their kids in boxes because of what other people prescribe to them when they’re born.
One of these moms is Nikkole Paulun, who recently went viral with a picture of her young son doing chores. She said, “I teach my son to cook and do household chores. Why? Because household work isn’t just for women.”
Because one day, he might be a single man living on his own who will actually know how to do laundry and not eat takeout every night. Because one day, he might want to impress a significant other with a meal cooked by his own hands. Because one day when he has kids and a spouse, he’s going to need to do his fair share around the home.
Because teaching my son how to do these things and be a productive member of society both outside the home and inside starts with me. Because it’s okay to let your child be a child but still teach them lifelong lessons along the way.
My son will never be too “manly” to cook or do chores. He will be the kind of man who can come inside from changing a tire to check on his pot roast. Who can properly sort his laundry and mow the lawn, too. Remember, parents. A man who believes he shouldn’t have to cook or do chores was once a boy who was never taught any better.