Ethan’s been on the verge of needing new shoes for a while, now, and the weekend just gone we finally managed to go and get him measured up to get some. In the week leading up to it, though, I told him that we were going to get some and his first response was ‘I want pink ones, like Amber!’
Ethan loves pink, he always had, given a choice between a new green beaker and a new pink one it’d always be pink and I’ve always given him that choice. I love that he’s at the age, right now, where that messed up stererotype that ‘pink is for girls’ hasn’t touched him yet.
My first thought was ‘yay’, I’ve always loved the pink shoes in Clarks, but soon after that came my second thought ‘but, of course, I can’t’. I wish it wasn’t true, but it is. I’ve always encouraged Ethan to play with toys which many consider ‘girly’ as well as his typical ‘boy’ toys too, I’ve always let him pick the pink option rather than a stereotypically ‘boys’ colour. But the moment he wears pink shoes he’s going to get comments from other kids – ‘Why are you wearing pink shoes?!’ ‘Why’s Ethan got pink shoes?’ and comments from strangers (we already get them about his hair, and he doesn’t understand).
Does it matter what other kids think? Does it matter what strangers think? Of course not, but Ethan’s getting to the age where he’s going to care about those comments (he already gets some nasty remarks from the kids at nursery because he’s still in nappies and because he has a pink drinks bottle).
I just Wish that it wasn’t like that – If kids weren’t brought up to think ‘pink is for girls’ and ‘blue is for boys’, if buggys weren’t a ‘girls toy’ and cars a ‘boys toy’ then there really wouldn’t be this problem. I will Never tell Ethan that he can’t like a colour or that a colour is for a girl not a boy, but other people Will! And I have to protect him from that even though I don’t want to, I want to let him dress top to toe in pink if that’s what he wants!
I do know that there are an increasing number of people who are feeling the same way as me, thankfully, but I know that the majority are stuck with the way they were brought up. Fingers crossed things change, in a more widespread way, we’ll see.
As it happens, we compromised. Pink shoes wouldn’t really have gone with his transformers tees anyway so we got him some sensible coloured daytime shoes and then got him some pink wellies and some pink slippers instead. He didn’t need wellies or slippers but I want my boy to have his pink! He love love loves them, as you can see from the pic above.
I just wish he wouldn’t grow out of this, but you know as well as I do that once he starts hearing the other kids say ‘pink is for girls’ he’ll start spouting it himself – I’ll always tell him that pink is for whoever likes pink, but school yard peers matter much more as they grow up and Mummy saying pink is ok won’t mean a thing if the little’uns in the playground tell him otherwise. Well I’ll cherish him as he is, and even when everything has to be ‘boy colours’ I’ll carry on cherishing him (and who knows, when he grows up and realises other people’s opinions don’t care, maybe he’ll get some pink wellies again!)
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