Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Isn't it all just "Parenting"?

I must spend to much time on the internet, yes that must be it. I've been coming across a bunch of articles about "gender neutral parenting."  I'm a bit confused as to what it actually entails. This one here at everydayfeminism.com is designed to display some of the myths surrounding the lifestyle.  Where as this one here on CNN just seems to go with the feminist idea of gender neutral. There are active petitions to prevent companies from gender stereotyping toys. Like the Toys R Us in the UK.

Now, this maybe how I was raised-perhaps having my brothers so close in age prevented a strict gender divide among us-but isn't this all boiling down to letting your children take joy in toys and activities? Male or Female alike? My youngest brother who is now very LARGE, and much bigger than me would run around in frilly pink jammies drowning GI Joe toys then ramming my Barbie RV into a war zone. My parents didn't really care-he wasn't screaming or killing cats. It was pink jammies, and a Barbie RV. My other brother had a thing for pink toenails.  I remember playing a combat game with the boys of the neighbourhood shortly after Jurassic Park came out-we had to kill the dinosaurs. We played it for weeks-it led into a intricate system of snow forts and fallen branches.

Isn't it ALL parenting? We were safe and happy, we solved problems together. Some required an emotional thought, while other problems needed strategy, and for sight. Things I wouldn't have learned playing kitchen alone, or my brothers kicking ass on the dino playing field. I wouldn't know what it was like to have a base ball to the face-and the wouldn't know what it was like to have Barbie smacked across their heads.

Any one who has spent any time with my children will see a diverse set of interests. My 16 month old son is currently obsessed with tiaras, and sparkly hats. My middle daughter loves cars and dinosaurs, my oldest is one of the only girls in her taekwondo class. None of this mean they'll be transgendered or gay-it means they're learning to be happy and open minded.

My goal as a parent is this-raise my children to be well rounded open minded adults who don't live in my basement. I don't care if its as a man, woman, or WITH a man or woman. Just a kind heart, and a giving soul. Strength to stand up for what they believe in, and the smarts to back up their mouths. 

So I think from now on, all attachment, gender neutral, crunchy, traditional, upside down or crooked parenting should be referred to as "parenting". That's it. Straight forward, and to the point. Because if your grown children are good, kind, generous, strong in their own way. Then you know what? You did it right. So good for you! Keep going, you're doing great!

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