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Why are people afraid of 'girly' boys?


pittsburghmummy

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I take DD to dance and noticed that many of the moms of boys express disgust when of their boys want to be the least little bit girly. One mom yesterday was very upset that her son had a purse but it had cars in it so it was okay. He also wants to dance but no way would she let him. He's two so I don't even think he understands gender yet. Does anyone else notice that?

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Guest Anonymous
I take DD to dance and noticed that many of the moms of boys express disgust when of their boys want to be the least little bit girly. One mom yesterday was very upset that her son had a purse but it had cars in it so it was okay. He also wants to dance but no way would she let him. He's two so I don't even think he understands gender yet. Does anyone else notice that?

Some people are homophobic assholes.

**Edited to elaborate:

Some people are invested in the stereotype of gay men behaving in what they perceive to be a feminine way. When a boy likes "girl" things, they have a big problem with it. Not all boys who like those things are gay, but there is still a disdain in many cultures for things that are considered to be women's things. Being a woman = degradation for those who buy into that. I blame the patriarchy.

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I take DD to dance and noticed that many of the moms of boys express disgust when of their boys want to be the least little bit girly. One mom yesterday was very upset that her son had a purse but it had cars in it so it was okay. He also wants to dance but no way would she let him. He's two so I don't even think he understands gender yet. Does anyone else notice that?

If it was the fathers, I'd just make a face and shrug. but coming from mothers... they should know better! Where is the unconditional love that a mother has for their children?

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Guest Anonymous

If it was the fathers, I'd just make a face and shrug. but coming from mothers... they should know better! Where is the unconditional love that a mother has for their children?

What in the actual fuck?

Eh, dudes! They can't possibly know better than to be homophobic! But women have special nurturing thingamabobs in their lady parts, so they're totes responsible for their actions where men are not. This is profoundly insulting to men and women.

I'm starting to wonder if you actually understand what sexism is.

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Completely agree. My daughter is in a toddler music class. The instructor handed out scarves and after playing with them suggests "what else can we do with these". Some kid always suggests putting it around their waist and parents of sons (there's always at least one who does this) will forcibly stop their 2-4 yr old sons from doing this activity.

My son is in dance. We had to look looooong and hard to find a dance class that was welcoming to boys. By welcoming I mean things like didn't require tutu's or girl-oriented outfits. Or have themes like "I'm a pretty princess" or "the princess tutus" (those are real classes btw). Why did we want our son in dance? Because my husband was in dance as a boy and LOVED it.

These things piss me the hell off. I think it has to do with a subtle gender hierarchy. Girls can pretend to be like boys because boys are higher on the totem pole. Girls are all supposed to want to be like boys, right? It's only natural. But a boy wanting to be like a girl throws the social order on its head.

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I added my opinion. based on my own experiences, fathers around me in general still cannot imagine having a gay child. They cannot. They'd sooner see them become a boozing nitwit who has no manners or purpose in life. Mothers seem more acceptive to me. I'm shocked by the first post. If I had a kid i would never be disgusted if they acted girlish(ly). I involved no isms here. I just said what I thought and what I saw so far. Ttttsit. You will police me for no reason? Just to make sure.

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I added my opinion. based on my own experiences, fathers around me in general still cannot imagine having a gay child. They cannot. They'd sooner see them become a boozing nitwit who has no manners or purpose in life. Mothers seem more acceptive to me. I'm shocked by the first post. If I had a kid i would never be disgusted if they acted girlish(ly). I involved no isms here. I just said what I thought and what I saw so far. Ttttsit. You will police me for no reason? Just to make sure.

That makes sense. If men do something then it is fine and dandy. If women do something it's just terrible. I can't see any sexism there. None at all.

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That makes sense. If men do something then it is fine and dandy. If women do something it's just terrible. I can't see any sexism there. None at all.

That 'dandy' thing is actually considered backward and beyond help to me. And awfully 50s... but whatever.

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Guest Anonymous
I added my opinion. based on my own experiences, fathers around me in general still cannot imagine having a gay child. They cannot. They'd sooner see them become a boozing nitwit who has no manners or purpose in life. Mothers seem more acceptive to me. I'm shocked by the first post. If I had a kid i would never be disgusted if they acted girlish(ly). I involved no isms here. I just said what I thought and what I saw so far. Ttttsit. You will police me for no reason? Just to make sure.

Pretty sure I'm not "policing" you. But yeah, if you say something sexist (which your post absolutely was) or defend misogyny then I will absolutely have a problem with it.

Also, you are in general hanging around with some shitty dudes.

**ETA: I kind of hope that you and GGC and shangrila are all the same person. If you're not it's really too depressing to contemplate.

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That 'dandy' thing is actually considered backward and beyond help to me. And awfully 50s... but whatever.

You said:

If it was the fathers, I'd just make a face and shrug. but coming from mothers... they should know better! Where is the unconditional love that a mother has for their children?

I was exaggerating when I said "fine and dandy" but you are still holding the women to a higher standard than the men. But apparently the men are "beyond help". Do you see the irony of saying something like that in a thread about why it is not OK to not let boys act or do things that are traditionally considered for girls?

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Yes, unfortunately. Most men I know are beyond help. All I can do is accommodate myself to their stupidness since i cannot educate them and make up for their mistakes if it happens around me.

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Guest Anonymous
Do you see the irony of saying something like that in a thread about why it is not OK to not let boys act or do things that are traditionally considered for girls?

I seriously doubt that she does. She's pretty much a study in Not Getting It.

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I run the baby story times at my library and sometimes I pass out scarves for the babies to wave around while I play a CD. Once I handed a hot pink scarf to a mother for her baby and she said "he's a boy" and handed it back. I couldn't believe she was concerned with her year-old baby boy playing with a pink scarf!

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Completely agree. My daughter is in a toddler music class. The instructor handed out scarves and after playing with them suggests "what else can we do with these". Some kid always suggests putting it around their waist and parents of sons (there's always at least one who does this) will forcibly stop their 2-4 yr old sons from doing this activity.

My son is in dance. We had to look looooong and hard to find a dance class that was welcoming to boys. By welcoming I mean things like didn't require tutu's or girl-oriented outfits. Or have themes like "I'm a pretty princess" or "the princess tutus" (those are real classes btw). Why did we want our son in dance? Because my husband was in dance as a boy and LOVED it.

These things piss me the hell off. I think it has to do with a subtle gender hierarchy. Girls can pretend to be like boys because boys are higher on the totem pole. Girls are all supposed to want to be like boys, right? It's only natural. But a boy wanting to be like a girl throws the social order on its head.

I SO feel you on this one. I have a four year old son, and last year, when he was three, I put him in a dance class at the community center. It was a hip-hop/jazz/ballet exposure/intro class. He was the only boy. He hasn't really noticed that girls and boys are different and has both girl and boy friends that he plays with equally well. He loved dancing, but told me he felt "lonely" in class. I never stayed to observe a whole class, so I figured it was because he is very shy, as he has friends in the class. On the second to last class, I stayed for their presentation dress rehearsal. The teacher totally singled him out constantly. He couldn't wear the same costume, use the same scarves, do the same dance moves. She kept saying things like "here's Joshy's BOY scarf" "Joshy gets to be a super hero, girls get to be princesses" "Joshy gets to be a bat, girls get to be unicorns." After the class, he said "mom, I wanted to be a unicorn too. I'm scared of bats" I asked him and a couple of the other moms if all the classes had been like that. They had been. I was horrified, and felt so bad that I didn't find out sooner. I didn't take him to the last class because he didn't want to go, and I filed a compliant with the community center.

I don't even know what to do, because he loves to dance, and the only other dance classes nearby are purely ballet, and he loves the jazz & hip hop, which is only taught by the same crappy teacher.

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I feel for you, aubrietta. The class I finally found is run through a local preschool. All students wear black and half of the classes are devoted to modern/tap stuff. Sometimes people just suck.

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I love girly boys:) Especially when it's never conditioned out of them by society. People are probably so disturbed by it because they think their son will end up gay, which is ridiculous because 'girly' boy does not equal gay boy. Also people have this idea of what boys and girls should and shouldn't like and anything that challenges that scares them. But as you can see from young boys who want to try 'girly' things, this strict adherence to gender norms is pretty learned.

Another reason, some people are stupid. I've discussed this a bit with a few of my friends (none of whom have kids yet, we're pretty young), they've all said they'd love sons who like pink sparkly and other 'girly' things, just as much as they'd love sons who didn't. So I have hope for the future.

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This reminds me of a time when my husband and I were in Books-a-million and a 4-year-old son said to his father, "Look Daddy! This is cute!" And the father said very quickly and sharply, "Men DO NOT say cute! Let's go!" My husband and I looked at eachother and burst out laughing! It was too ridiculous. :roll:

The men in my life say cute all the time, and they are still manly. They even hold my purses for me, use my lipgloss as chapstick sometimes, and love Celine Dion and Cher. Big whoop.

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If the gayest of gayness is actually (gasp) marrying another gay person, then the gayest men I know are two burly shaggy guys who wear plaid shirts and gimme caps. They look like extras on The Red Green Show. They have been married so long they have started to resemble each other.

Buuuuut if gay = unmanly, and feminine = unmanly, then obv. gay = feminine and femininity produces Teh Ghey.

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I tried to put my toddler boys into a baby dance and also a tumble class but both of them were geared for girls only and wouldn't accept my sons. I tried to argue that most 2-3 year olds didn't care and my wouldn't care they were the only boys but they wouldn't hear of it. The only classes I could get them into were private centers that would cost me an arm and a leg and as a very young mother I didn't have that kind of money to spare. So in other words at the local community center where I could enroll my sons for a small price wouldn't take them as dance was a girl's activity and where they would take them would have cost 75 dollars each for each class. :evil:

My boys loved doing sports but they also loved art, dancing, baking and a whole host of other things that wasn't considered manly. I was able to find places like 4-H and Y clubs that helped fullfill their desires and sometimes mine would be the only boys in the group. If one of the other mothers tried to say something about how cake decorating or the like wasn't very manly then she would get an ear full of how whatever activity is still dominated by men and don't you dare tell my sons they couldn't do something because they were boys and not girls. If I had tried that with their daughters they would cry foul but had no problems doing the same thing to my sons. Thankfully those people were not the majority.

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I love girly boys:) Especially when it's never conditioned out of them by society.

I find girly boys adorable and men who aren't afraid to been seen looking feminine = sexy. I once saw a guy with his daugher- wearing a tiara, a tutu over his jeans, waving a magic wand, and acting like a princess because that's what made his daughter happy. I'm attracted only to women 80% of the time but I so wanted to jump that guy.

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I find girly boys adorable and men who aren't afraid to been seen looking feminine = sexy. I once saw a guy with his daugher- wearing a tiara, a tutu over his jeans, waving a magic wand, and acting like a princess because that's what made his daughter happy. I'm attracted only to women 80% of the time but I so wanted to jump that guy.

Where is he and is he single? :whistle:

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I think that it all comes down to the deep seated Patriarchy. All things female are considered inferior, subservient, weaker, less desirable, less successful, etcetera. If a girl has a fondness for these things it is natural to her lesser nature and encouraged. If a boy is interested in things considered to be feminine, it is seen as somehow lowering his status or lessening himself.

The thing that resonates for me about Free Jinger is that when we snark on the extreme Patriarchy of Fundamentalism, it helps me to see that we carry much of the same burden in mainstream society. It helps me stay clear on the fact that the roots run deep and that it will take more generations of commitment to stop the oppresion of females. Ultimately, freeing women from oppression will free the males as well. It is fear that keeps man and women trapped in unnecesary defined roles.

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Where is he and is he single? :whistle:

Sadly, I assume he's taken because I saw the little girl's mom playing with them (they were the neighbors of a friend of mine playing in their front yard)

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I think that it all comes down to the deep seated Patriarchy. All things female are considered inferior, subservient, weaker, less desirable, less successful, etcetera. If a girl has a fondness for these things it is natural to her lesser nature and encouraged. If a boy is interested in things considered to be feminine, it is seen as somehow lowering his status or lessening himself.

I was told something similar to this in a class that studied fundamentalism. Male homosexuals are so opposed by fundamentalists because they 'bring guys down to the level of girls.' This apparently threatens the 'higher status of males' everywhere.

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Sadly, I assume he's taken because I saw the little girl's mom playing with them (they were the neighbors of a friend of mine playing in their front yard)

Damn. I personally don't know a woman alive who wouldn't want a man like that. I once saw my own husband wear a foofy hat for a little girl at a friend's party and I thought he was the sexiest man alive* in that pink monstrosity of lace, ribbons and feathers. I'm a total sucker for men who are suckers for kids. :D

*I still do even if he doesn't wear tea hats all the time.

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