Friend's son wears dresses. - Mothering Forums

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Old 12-18-2009, 10:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi! I'm curious about opinions out there.

My best friend lets her son wear dresses in public. I live in a conservative little town and everyone gets really uncomfortable with a 3 yr. old boy wearing a dress. My BF is clueless with the discomfort her son causes.

What would you do? Is this even a concern?
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Old 12-18-2009, 10:51 PM
 
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It's no one else's concern. Maybe the boy is just going through a phase, maybe he's actually a girl in a boy's body. Either way, he should be able wear that's comfortable for him without worrying about what people think.
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Old 12-18-2009, 10:58 PM
 
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No concern for me. Clothing is a battle I don't choose to enter. My son pretty much wears what he wants. I might cringe when he insists on wearing plaid with stripes or shiver when he wants to wear short sleeve tees in the middle of a cold new england winter but so not worth the power struggle.

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Old 12-18-2009, 11:07 PM
 
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It is no big deal at all. Probably means nothing, with the regard to the child's orientation, too. I think it's WONDERFUL that your friend lets her son choose what he wears (I'm assuming it's his choice, not hers, right?) . I bow down at her feet for being so loving and accepting!!!! I think it's a fabulous lesson for the town, too. If you can support her in your town, by saying a little something whenever someone expresses their discomfort, I'm sure it would help. Stuff like this can spread around quickly. If you were to say, "Yeah, isn't it cute that he does that? I just love him. He's such a unique kid.", purposefully misinterpreting what the uncomfortable villagers are saying, chances are your comment will be spread, too, and people will agree with you.
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Old 12-18-2009, 11:10 PM
 
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Why should she care if other people are uncomfortable?
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Old 12-18-2009, 11:44 PM
 
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We all do things that make other people uncomfortable, why should we have to reevaluate what we're doing because of that?

I doubt anyone in town gets uncomfortable because a 3 year old girl wears pants.

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Old 12-18-2009, 11:45 PM
 
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I think it's fantastic that she allows her son to express himself without getting concerned about what others might think. My guess is that that little boy has and will continue to have a great relationship with his mom.
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Old 12-18-2009, 11:47 PM
 
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Is she clueless or she just doesn't care?

If he wants to wear a dress, I think it is great that she doesn't try to stop him. Good for her!
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Old 12-18-2009, 11:49 PM
 
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My nearly 4 year old son recently wore a hot pink tutu in the grocery store. So what? He's a kid. Like a PP said, for one thing, so not worth the power struggle, and for another...who cares?

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Old 12-18-2009, 11:51 PM
 
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I don't think it is a big deal.

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Old 12-18-2009, 11:53 PM
 
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Why does it make other people uncomfortable? They're problem..... I've let my son wear pj's out, and mismatched clothes, because he chose them....if we had dresses around and he chose to wear one, or asked for one at the store, I'd let him, absolutely.

(I did draw the line at letting him wear Mommy's underwear around his neck when leaving home though).

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Old 12-18-2009, 11:54 PM
 
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Originally Posted by bandgeek View Post
It's no one else's concern. Maybe the boy is just going through a phase, maybe he's actually a girl in a boy's body. Either way, he should be able wear that's comfortable for him without worrying about what people think.
This. I don't think it should be of concern to people in your town.

Are you sure she is clueless? Because she might be choosing to ignore irrational, ridiculous judgments (passed on a 3 year old to boot!) and close-mindedness, and let her son feel free to express himself and dress how he wants.

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Old 12-18-2009, 11:57 PM
 
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What could possible be the problem with that?
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Old 12-18-2009, 11:58 PM
 
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Why should she care if other people are uncomfortable?

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Old 12-18-2009, 11:59 PM
 
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Time for the town to grow up.

Men in many cultures have worn dresses or skirts. They're fun! Good for her.

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Old 12-19-2009, 12:00 AM
 
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I think it depends.

If she is putting her DS's comfort before random town folks comfort, then great for her . When her DS realizes that it is causing issues, he will decide whether he thins it's worth it. On the bright side, at least they can tell he's a boy, for some reason people keep thinking my short haired child in boy clothes is a girl .

However, if she is dressing her unaware 3yo cross gender specifically to make her own statement, then I would say something. It's really not fair to set your child up for teasing over something so trivial as gender appropriate clothing.

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Old 12-19-2009, 02:03 AM
 
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I agree with the PP - if it's the boy's choice, then fine! If it's mom's choice (which I find hard to believe) then it's a bit different.

I'm pretty conservative about a lot of stuff but I have no problems with, if you'll excuse the expression, "girly" boys. Especially if they're toddlers. My son is pretty sensitive, wants to wear dresses (even though we have yet to get him one, but he wishes he could fit into DD's dresses - probably next summer we'll get him one of his own to wear) and says he's a "pretty princess" a lot. He also likes nail polish and lip gloss. He also loves fairies and butterflies - his room is covered in them. He likes dolls, cooking, baking, and gardening. He likes to "help" me embroider and has tea parties.

He also wrestles, he adores trucks and trains and cars, adores playing in the mud and dirt, thinks fire trucks and garbage trucks are the coolest thing in the world, likes sword fighting (not too fond of that one myself!) and tells me he's going to be a pirate and a musketeer. (That is, when he isn't going to be an elephant or princess.) And DD does these things right along with him.

Gender, schmender. They do whatever seems like fun at the time and they like to look pretty in whatever way it seems to them at the moment. Sometimes pretty is about nail polish and tiaras and sometimes it's about fire truck boots. Whatever!

(ETA: We also have long and loud conversations, usually in very quiet public places, about the certain body parts boys and girls have, and how big they are, and which ones daddies and mommies have. Etc. So he's certainly aware of biological differences. FWIW.)

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Old 12-19-2009, 02:12 AM
 
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I don't understand why this is an issue. He's three.
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Old 12-19-2009, 02:18 AM
 
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Old 12-19-2009, 02:19 AM
 
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Until either WW1 or WW2 (too tired to recall which right now) boys were commonly dressed in dressed until the age of 5 - and pink was one of the colors they wore. I don't see an issue here.
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Old 12-19-2009, 02:25 AM
 
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I think it's cute. I have seen many a three year old in some wild stuff. A previous neighbor had a girl that would either wear underwear or pants, never both. So, she was frequently in just underwear. 3 is the time where you should be able to wear whatever you feel like.

I'm going to say that I wouldn't "let" my son wear a dress in public because we don't have any! I don't even think I own one. If he was interested in dresses I would get him a kilt style one. We are Scottish anyways.

His uncle (my BIL) wore one to our wedding!

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Old 12-19-2009, 02:30 AM
 
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Good for them
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Old 12-19-2009, 02:43 AM
 
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Originally Posted by MusicianDad View Post
I doubt anyone in town gets uncomfortable because a 3 year old girl wears pants.
:

It's ridiculous that girls can wear anything but boys are supposed to limit themselves to wearing 50% of the available clothing.

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Old 12-19-2009, 02:54 AM
 
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I wouldn't say anything. It is not a problem. If people have a problem with it....it is their problem and they can deal with it.
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Old 12-19-2009, 03:10 AM
 
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i think that if the kid wants to wear a dress, he should wear a dress. and if others object to boys in dresses, then they are probably free to dress as they wish and move on with their lives. really.

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Old 12-19-2009, 03:17 AM
 
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Eventually people will just stop noticing. Especially if it's a small community, everyone will just stop wondering because they will be used to it.

Everything new or different takes a while for people to get comfortable with, so she probably just doesn't care. They'll get over it.

He will just be the kid who marches to the beat of his own drum. It's great!
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Old 12-19-2009, 03:34 AM
 
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no big dealio.
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Old 12-19-2009, 03:38 AM
 
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It's not a problem. The only reason I don't let ds2 go out in a dress is because it bothers dh. DS2 did go to a birthday party in our complex this summer wearing a dress. We got invited over for cake at the last minute, and ds2 happened to be wearing one of dd1's dresses...a Disney Princess dress, in fact. I had no problem with it.

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Old 12-19-2009, 03:44 AM
 
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I agree with the PP - if it's the boy's choice, then fine! If it's mom's choice (which I find hard to believe) then it's a bit different.
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Exactly this. Couldn't agree more.
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Old 12-19-2009, 04:05 AM
 
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I really need to convince my husband to wear one of those.

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