Saturday, August 6, 2011
The Power of Pink
One of the other mommy blogs that I follow recently posted about how she has conflicted feelings about all the pink toys her daughter has, and in particular, a pink play kitchen. She struggles with the thought of how she might be teaching her daughter that because she is a girl, her role is in the kitchen. Her post was much longer and much better articulated than my above sentences, but that was the general gist.
(Edited to add- it later occurred to me that I should link back to the original blog- oops! here you go- http://goodwifeinthekitchen.blogspot.com/2011/08/on-raising-girl.html)
I typed out a response to her post but thought it might be good here too. If anyone else with a daughter has thoughts on this, I would love to hear them!
I have thoughts like this sometimes too with my daughter, although she's still an infant. I keep telling myself that it's important for her to embrace being a girl, because it will help her embrace being a woman. Being a girl isn't "weak". It isn't "lesser". It's just different. And I think helping my daughter embrace her femininity and learning how to be a woman is important in developing her confidence.
I don't want to send her mixed messages by having her grow up watching me clean and cook and be a homemaker, but then demean my job and my role in our family by insisting she do something else with her life or not letting her play with housekeeping toys. We will raise her to know she can do anything that she wants with her life, and if she chooses to be a homemaker like Mommy then that's great. If she chooses to be a scientist or a lawyer or a college professor, then that's great too. She will have a mix of toys, including "housekeeping" toys. It will be up to her what she wants to play with!
But I refuse to teach her the attitude that my job as a wife, a mother, and a homemaker is something that I was forced to do solely because I am a girl, and I certainly don't want to teach her that I hate my job. I love being a homemaker and a mother, and I know she will grow up watching me in that role. If she wants to play alongside me with her housekeeping toys, then I will consider it a compliment. And I also won't be hurt if she chooses to play with race cars and trucks and play doctor kits. Because, after all, wasn't the whole feminist movement about giving us the choice about what to do with our lives?
Posted by Sarah