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Children+Gender:

 1 Fish 1, Tue, 24th May '11 8:13:05 AM from Lovecraft Country
2 Fish
Based on people's differing opinions on the genderless child thread.

How would you raise your children to conform(or not) to expected gender roles?

How would you react if they didn't conform to their expected role?
Indeed.
 2 annebeeche, Tue, 24th May '11 8:21:37 AM from by the long tidal river
watching down on us
I have a rather androgynous way of looking at the world, and I was raised in a very much androgynous fashion, so my way of raising kids would also be, naturally, androgynous. To me there are no "girl" toys and "boy" toys, and I'd just get my kids t-shirts and jeans (the same kinds of clothes I usually wear) until they expressed interest in wearing other clothes.

"Here's some toys [nascars, legos, k-nex, barbies, plushies] I personally enjoyed playing with as a little kid, and some other toys I saw in the store that looked like a lot of fun. Here's how you access wikipedia on the computer so you can learn about whatever you want, and some stories and movies that I loved reading and watching as a kid."

I honestly could not give a flying fuck about gender roles, they're not important to me at all and have never played a significant part in my life or how I think. I'm more concerned about raising assertive, confident children who will resolve their problems with their minds, be unafraid to be whatever they want to be, and freely seek knowledge and skill in whatever they're interested in. Which is kind of how my parents raised me anyway.

For the record, I am an ordinary straight woman. I don't consider my manners and interests (or any manners and interests, for that matter) to be masculine or feminine.

edited 24th May '11 8:29:52 AM by annebeeche

Banned entirely for telling FE that he was being rude and not contributing to the discussion. I shall watch down from the goon heavens.
 3 Game Chainsaw, Tue, 24th May '11 8:57:14 AM from sunshine and rainbows!
The Shadows Devour You.
I wouldn't press anything on to them at all. I'd teach all my kids what is useful to know. If that means encouraging boys to learn dance and girls to play football, all the better to confront a few biases in the first place. Equally, I wouldn't go around dressing my boys in dresses, because that in itself is pressing a fight onto the child based on your own ideology, something I am sworn against. Ideology includes gender roles. Above all, I'd want to present the largest number of options to the kid, and then let them pick their own battles. After that, come what may.

edited 24th May '11 8:57:49 AM by GameChainsaw

 4 De Marquis, Tue, 24th May '11 9:48:13 AM from Hell, USA Relationship Status: Buried in snow, waiting for spring
Who Am I?
I'm raising two young children, a 5 year old boy and a 3 year old girl. I haven't deliberately tried to teach them anything about gender roles. Actually, I've tried to avoid pushing them in one direction or another, neither encouraging gender-specific behaviors nor suppressing them. So if my son wanted to play with dolls that was fine. If my daughter wants to play army, it's all good. Of course I cant (nor have I tried) to isolate them from outside influences. They get exposure to American cultural norms through TV, school, books, etc. Finally, of course, they have me and their mother as role models. We both work full time, and I wouldn't describe either one of us as socially conservative, really quite the opposite.

Of course, I ended up with a boy's boy, and girl who likes to play with Barbie dolls and pink ponies. Watching them grow, I really think their desire to be a certain type of person comes from within the child. My daughter does like to copy her brother, and has some tom-boyish tendencies. I've decided that whatever seems most comfortable for them is what they should be. I wouldn't know what other policy to follow anyway.
“Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.”
 5 Blue Ninja 0, Tue, 24th May '11 9:51:06 AM from The Middle of Nowhere Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Plotting my Escape
I have two boys. They dress in any color except pink* and play with mostly "boy" toys - cars, trains, Legos, cheap action figures from Happy Meals, etc. They do have a couple of dolls that were my wife's when she was little, and they play with those too. They also try to 'help' when mommy is taking apart computers or daddy is sewing. [lol]

I'm not much worried about gender roles for my kids, honestly. Most gender-role crap is retarded. Just as long as they're not wearing pink anything. cool
The mark of a place joining the civilised section of the Internet is when it starts banning people being assholes in their space-Silas W
 6 Jeysie, Tue, 24th May '11 10:38:49 AM from Western Massachusetts
Diva of Virtual Death
I would just buy them whatever clothes and toys I thought were cool while they were a kid, and then let them play with/wear whatever they wanted when they got older. And also let them do whatever activities they felt like doing that wouldn't get them killed.

I'd see no reason to even care whether they conform to gender roles or not, or to go out of my way to ensure either result. Just let them develop however they develop.
Apparently I am adorable, but my GF is my #1 Groupie. (Avatar by Dreki-K)
 7 Bobby G, Tue, 24th May '11 10:54:51 AM from the Silvery Tay
vigilantly taxonomish
I would refer to them as boys if they were male and girls if they were female. I would not pay any attention to the target gender of the toys they liked, I'd just let them play with whatever toys they preferred. I'd encourage both boys and girls to play actively, but I wouldn't pressure them to play sports if they didn't want to.

I'd probably want to regulate their TV at first until they were a bit older, but I'd let them watch any programmes directed at boys, girls and unisex audiences so long as I thought they were suitable.

Clothes-wise, again, I'd let them choose, but I'd probably try to gently dissuade boys from going out dressed in overtly "girly" clothing, not for any ideological reason but just so that they wouldn't get bullied for it.

edited 24th May '11 10:55:12 AM by BobbyG

 8 Hungry Joe, Tue, 24th May '11 10:55:15 AM from Under the Tree
Gristknife
I'd angle a bit towards one side or the other depending on the gender of the child, but first and foremost they'd be a nerd.

Although I think I'd defer to my wife on a lot of things.
Charlie Tunoku is a lover and a fighter.
I'd probably raise them without much attention paid to their sexes, though I certainly wouldn't isolate them from outside information on cultural expectation of each gender. When they'd be old enough to be able to understand, I'd explain to them the cultural expectations of each gender, the more complex aspects of gender roles and gender identity, and so on, and let them decide what they think is appropriate for them.
 
 10 del diablo, Tue, 24th May '11 12:58:24 PM from Somewher in mid Norway
Den harde nordmann
It would matter what I would attempt to raise my kids as.
However, what would matter more is what society wants those kids to think, and I have no idea on how I am going to properly get my kids to understand society is wrong. Even if I can get them to understand that, they will likely not be able to comprehend it before age of 14-15 and by that time the damage has been done quite a bit.

I guess I want my children to realize that humans are indirectly evil, that they are free to do whatever, and what is does not have to be. I guess I do not even want them to get into gender roles, unless it is flipped.
A guy called dvorak is tired. Tired of humanity not wanting to change to improve itself. Quite the sad tale.
 11 Aondeug, Tue, 24th May '11 1:00:06 PM from  Our Dreams
Oh My
I'd give the little fuckers the childhood I had meaning NO restrictions of what toys, clothes, and so on that they are allowed to play with, wear, and so on. If Paul wants to wear a dress Paul can wear that dress. If Susan wants to play with her giant robot action figures before going out to play fight then so be it. Bitch can do this. Go for it you little fucks. BE THE YOU YOU WANT TO BE. So long as you aren't grievously harming things emotionally or physically or some such thing. I'll let them pick whatever gender they want to. If Paul wants to be Paula then Paul can be Paula. Now if Paula continues to want to be Paula in the future ok. If not ok. Whatever. Default I'll probably consider the male a boy and the female a girl because on average that's what most people fall into.

This will of course this could likely result in a child just as monstrously weird as I was or one who was just as unwilling to simply bow to every restriction they were given just because they were told to...Which sounds like it would be annoying while raising them. So long as they aren't bigots or assholes I guess I would be fine though.

As for whether or not this kid could fit in with society...I managed it just fine and my family life was the opposite of strict on any belief system...It was more "PICK WHAT YOU WANT TO BE OMG :D". Again so long as I wasn't murdering squirrels or compulsively lying to everyone.

edited 24th May '11 1:03:03 PM by Aondeug

If someone wants to accuse us of eating coconut shells, then that's their business. We know what we're doing. - Achaan Chah
 12 pvtnum 11, Tue, 24th May '11 1:09:34 PM from Kerbin low orbit Relationship Status: We finish each other's sandwiches
linkup
This is a girl. She is playing Army, and wanted my help in dressing her up as a soldier.

She also likes wearing the fiberglass helmet liner for an M1 steelpot helmet.

Prefectly normal.
Happiness is zero-gee with a sinus cold.
Nihilist Hippie
[up]How cute! tongue
"Had Mother Nature been a real parent, she would have been in jail for child abuse and murder." -Nick Bostrom
 14 Aondeug, Tue, 24th May '11 1:23:14 PM from  Our Dreams
Oh My
I wish I had toys like that...Oh well. I had wooden swords that I used to beat the fuck out of the neighbor boy with. Good times.
If someone wants to accuse us of eating coconut shells, then that's their business. We know what we're doing. - Achaan Chah
 15 annebeeche, Tue, 24th May '11 1:58:18 PM from by the long tidal river
watching down on us
[up][up][up] This makes me so ridiculously happy.

And I agree—that is perfectly normal.
Banned entirely for telling FE that he was being rude and not contributing to the discussion. I shall watch down from the goon heavens.
 16 pvtnum 11, Tue, 24th May '11 2:03:49 PM from Kerbin low orbit Relationship Status: We finish each other's sandwiches
linkup
Oh gads, my house is sooooo messy in the first link. My cute little entropy machine is often busy spreading chaos and disorder wherever she goes.
Happiness is zero-gee with a sinus cold.
 17 annebeeche, Tue, 24th May '11 2:08:12 PM from by the long tidal river
watching down on us
Hee hee. :3

That expression of hers in the first picture is so serious. I can see her being an army hero sometime in the future. :D
Banned entirely for telling FE that he was being rude and not contributing to the discussion. I shall watch down from the goon heavens.
I think that gender identity shouldn't be central to the upbringing of a child, although I'd probably give my children 'traditionally' girlish/boyish clothes and, possibly, toys. If they wanted different toys I wouldn't have any problems with it, although if they didn't identify with their gender (I'm not sure if children really have problems like that) I wouldn't know what to do. I'd probably consult psychologist. I think that raising 'genderless' children is a stupid idea and while I'm not going to shove 'gender roles' or sth like that down anyone's throat I think there is nothing wrong with showing children 'normal' examples. Children perceive world in a different way and trying to explain them complexities of sex and gender - you show the most simple way first and get into serious talks when they can understand them
"Take your (...) hippy dream world, I'll take reality and earning my happiness with my own efforts" - Barkey
I would essentially ignore my children's sex outright. I'd probably buy them toys I like before they'd get old enough to choose for themselves, which would end up being mostly geeky stuff. But I would totally be okay with them asking for toys across their gender.

Oh, and I definitely wouldn't color their stuff based on what parts they have down there; that's just silly. Really, penis vs. vagina doesn't matter at all until you potty train 'em, and doesn't matter much until they reach puberty.
I'm convinced that our modern day analogues to ancient scholars are comedians. -0dd1
 20 Jeysie, Tue, 24th May '11 2:30:13 PM from Western Massachusetts
Diva of Virtual Death
[up] The color-coding thing is annoying. I hate the color pink and prefer pastel blues and lavenders when I do want something "girly", but almost all girly stuff is some shade of pink or pinkish-purple. Meh.
Apparently I am adorable, but my GF is my #1 Groupie. (Avatar by Dreki-K)
 21 wuggles, Tue, 24th May '11 2:31:12 PM from Miami, FL Relationship Status: [TOP SECRET]
I'd probably just do what my mom did, lean towards what gender they were, but still let them have whatever toys, clothes etc. they want. As another poster said, as long as I didn't ask my mom if I could have a new machete for Christmas, it was all good.

 22 Aondeug, Tue, 24th May '11 2:33:43 PM from  Our Dreams
Oh My
Oh the color thing. I'll dress the fuckers in whatever colors I like before they can pick themselves. If this so happens to result in people guessing my child's sex wrong oh well.

^I would totally have wanted one of those as a kid...BUT SADLY. SADLY.

;_;

edited 24th May '11 2:34:16 PM by Aondeug

If someone wants to accuse us of eating coconut shells, then that's their business. We know what we're doing. - Achaan Chah
Heading for tomorrow
I'm of two minds. I wouldn't want to imprison a child inside a mental/emotional prison, and our current gender roles are extremely confining and psychologically unhealthy, but I also would want to ensure the child's safety because these gender norms are very strictly enforced by society and Kids Are Cruel.
Out of Context Theater: Mike K

"'Bloody Pussies' cracked me up"
 24 annebeeche, Tue, 24th May '11 4:55:48 PM from by the long tidal river
watching down on us
Kids are cruel regardless of whether or not the victim fits gender roles. If they cannot make fun of you for behaving the opposite gender, they'll find some other part of you to make fun of.

edited 24th May '11 4:56:22 PM by annebeeche

Banned entirely for telling FE that he was being rude and not contributing to the discussion. I shall watch down from the goon heavens.
Heading for tomorrow
With gender roles they go above and beyond the call of asshole duty and often threaten the very lives of nonconformists. It goes way, way beyond ordinary bullying.
Out of Context Theater: Mike K

"'Bloody Pussies' cracked me up"
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Total posts: 25
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