A Rudimentary Debunking of Gender Stereotypes

Around Easter I think I witnessed something that completely destroyed whatever misconceptions might still exist about the archaic ‘man strong, woman weak’ attitude. My sister Jordan has two young children, Alexander and Alice. Alex is a typical five-year-old boy: he likes superheroes and action figures, and is often wilfully disobedient just because he thinks it’s funny. Alice is a typical three-year-old girl: she loves crafts and sparkles, she has occasional but epic tantrums, and when she grows up she wants to be a mermaid unicorn.

Enter the comparison…

At dinner, Jordan told us that during naptime at Alice’s pre-school, there was a girl sleeping next to Alice whose eye suddenly popped out. Alice saw, so she got up, went to the teacher, and told her what happened. It turns out that the napping child had a glass eye, which Alice had no way of knowing, but she didn’t cry or scream or anything. I said, ‘Okay, I am officially proud that she’s my niece.’

As for Alex, a week later his Easter basket fell on the carpet and three eggs tumbled out. Our dog, Beau, went sniffing after them and I said we couldn’t let Beau eat the eggs. Alex was sitting right next to where the eggs fell, and instead of reaching down to pick them up, he just sat there and started wailing.


One thought on “A Rudimentary Debunking of Gender Stereotypes

  1. I’ve ended up with a daughter who loves climbing and dressing up, and whose favourite movies include Tangled, Wreck-It Ralph, and Cars. We have a lot of rigid conceptions about gender that aren’t terribly helpful or accurate, if not outright damaging.


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