Anyone have a boy who takes ballet? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 16 Old 12-27-2010, 10:59 AM - Thread Starter
 
minkajane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Columbus, OH
Posts: 5,143
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

DS is about to turn 6 and he loves loves LOVES music and dancing. We watched The Battle of the Nutcrackers every night together for a week and he loves imitating their moves. He's done the same with So You Think You Can Dance. He dances all the time. We had him in dance class at The Little Gym for a year, which he loved, but the huge focus they have on non-competition means they do basically the same thing every week. I'm thinking about putting him in a real ballet class, but I worry that it will be difficult on him. Not the class itself, but others' reactions. He gets a lot of grief from XH's family about having long hair and playing with "girls' toys." He was the only boy in his other dance class, but at the time he didn't care. He's getting older and starting to get it more that some people think some things are just for boys and some are just for girls.

 

If you have a boy in ballet, how do others react? How does your son handle it? Does he ever get upset or bothered by it?


Mandy, )O(  Proud mommy of Taylor (1/6/05) jammin.gifand Abigail (4/21/11) slinggirl.gif
Loving wife of my gamer boy Michael. modifiedartist.gifBlog link in my profile! ribboncesarean.gif
minkajane is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 of 16 Old 12-27-2010, 11:57 AM
 
Smokering's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 8,316
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)

Your son sounds like my DD. :) I've considered enrolling her in ballet (once I can legally drive her to classes!), but I decided to go with something a bit less structured and formal than ballet. Probably jazz.

 

I know a boy of 4 or 5 who does ballet - he's a very stereotypical grubby-kneed, tree-climbing, running-around-with-sticks kind of boy, and his family generally does pretty traditional gender roles (SAHM, homeschooling, conservative Christian, canning homegrown tomatoes sort of family), but they obviously had no problems with it, which I think is pretty cool. He LOVES it, and I think being the only boy in a classful of girls is a perk in his mind! He gets a bit spoiled, and gets to play the prince regardless of his ability (although he's not bad). :p

 

I've noticed a few people do double-takes or giggle when they hear he does ballet, though, and the kid's own 13-year-old sister seems to find it as much embarrassing as cool. So it definitely blips on people's radars, you know? But I don't know that anyone's said anything negative to the boy - and it probably wouldn't bug him if they did, he's a pretty free-spirited kid. If your XH's family doesn't like him playing with "girl toys", though, yes, they will probably mock him unless you a) keep it a secret from them or b) tell them sternly beforehand, without DS present, that if they so much as snicker there will be hell to pay.


If decomposition persists please see your necromancer.

Smokering is online now  
#3 of 16 Old 12-27-2010, 02:15 PM
 
jen in co's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 231
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My little guy (age 5) is starting Dance class in January -- it's all boys, Hip Hop class and a bunch of his buddies are also doing it...having it be hip hop and all boys does make it easier, but if my little guy wanted to do Ballet, we'd sign him up no question

jen in co is offline  
#4 of 16 Old 12-27-2010, 02:47 PM
 
Lillitu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Columbus, OH
Posts: 578
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

If my son wanted to dance, I would sign him up! We know a male ballet dancer who is part of a professional company (he and his wife were in our birth class), so I would take him to talk to him as well.


Mama to a 3 year old awesome kid, Rowan (aka Mister Boopy) and TTC another at 43!


fambedsingle1.gif gd.gifnovaxnocirc.gif vbac.gif goorganic.jpg

Herbalist, Acupuncture student, Mama, Blogger!

Lillitu is offline  
#5 of 16 Old 12-28-2010, 08:45 AM
 
Jane91's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 140
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Well, a male ballet dancer just landed Natalie Portman (engaged, having a child in 2011), so maybe a mention of that will quell anyone who thinks that just because he likes ballet/dance he must be gay.

Jane91 is offline  
#6 of 16 Old 12-28-2010, 09:21 AM
 
karne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 3,558
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

PM'd you.

karne is offline  
#7 of 16 Old 12-28-2010, 10:43 AM
 
VisionaryMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 3,736
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My son started ballet around 18 months. He's never paid any attention to anyone looking at him, which has only happened when he's wearing his unitard in public (usually just from the car to the studio). The hardest part was finding shoes for male dancers so young. They were more expensive, and we had to order them. No parents comment or anything, and people generally think it's "so cute" to see him at recitals.


It's us: DH , DS ; DD ; and me . Also there's the . And the 3 . I . Oh, and .
VisionaryMom is offline  
#8 of 16 Old 12-31-2010, 01:54 AM
 
KaylaBeanie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: The South...for now
Posts: 584
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I believe very strongly in the arts, so all my children will be enrolled in ballet at 18 months and start an instrument at 4/5, regardless of whether they're a boy or girl. The way I see it, if my son is straight (since so many people worry about ballet being too "feminine") then he is set in his teenage years, because he'll be outnumbered twenty to one by girls whistling.gif


treehugger.gif NMY, uber-crunchy, college student, doula-in-training, health food store worker and future librarian read.gif
                                      

KaylaBeanie is offline  
#9 of 16 Old 01-02-2011, 11:35 AM
 
Marissamom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 1,535
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

my reservations about putting my son in ballet classes aren't from external teasing, but over the years in the ballet world (took ballet for 13 years and taught for several more) I've seen too many boys who were the only boy in the class teased mercilessly by the girls in their class (mostly in 2nd-8th grades). I don't know how many choices you would have in your area, but looking for a class with another boy would probably be a good idea


Marissa, Partner to J geek.gif, SAHM to A (05/09)fly-by-nursing1.gif and I (03/11)stork-boy.gif. we cd.gif
selectivevax.gifdelayedvax.gifnocirc.giffemalesling.GIFecbaby2.gif part-time and familybed1.gif through infancy. planning ahomebirth.jpg
Marissamom is offline  
#10 of 16 Old 01-02-2011, 11:58 AM
 
mariaz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 150
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My 6 year old son is in a boys only hip-hop and tap class that he absolutely loves.

 

He asked me earlier this year if he could play football next year and I told him "that's fine but you'll have to choose just two things between dance, boy scouts and football." He said "Oh, well then I want to do dance and boy scouts!"

 

My 5 year old danced in a ballet class last year (when he was 4) and enjoyed it quite a bit. He didn't dance this year but has said that he would like to go back next year (I don't know if he will choose the ballet/tap class that is mostly girls or the hip hop/tap class that is all boys).

 

Both of their sisters dance as well. 


Student and SAHM to 6 little people. Some by birth, some through adoptionheart-1.gif , some through foster care
mariaz is offline  
#11 of 16 Old 01-04-2011, 05:41 AM
 
lindberg99's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 2,799
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

If he's interested, sign him up for a class! He might love it, he might hate it, he might decide to stay in some other form of dance, he might want to switch to basketball. But he'll never know until he tries it so don't buy trouble worrying about what might happen, just sign him up and see how it goes. One of my friend's sons danced all through high school. He was the only boy the entire time but that must not have bothered him at all.

lindberg99 is offline  
#12 of 16 Old 01-04-2011, 05:53 AM
 
The4OfUs's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 4,897
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marissamom View Post

I've seen too many boys who were the only boy in the class teased mercilessly by the girls in their class (mostly in 2nd-8th grades).

 Wow, this is awful.  We were so protective of the boy in our class, I could neve imagine any of us making fun of him.  :(

 

I don't have a boy in balllet class, but there was a boy IN *my* ballet class/school, all the way up through high school.  He was awesome, we all loved him and never would imagine teasing him.  He was desperately in love with one of the girls in our class, but she saw him as a brother, which was a bummer for him.  He was like a brother to all of us, and his senior year hot DAMN did he look great from all those years of training and hitting full on manhood!  He was also brilliant in science and math, but had an artist's heart and wound up going into a fine arts program (he also played piano)...I wonder what he's doing these days?

 

Our son (7 in a few weeks) has gone back and forth about wanting to dance.  Right now he wants to take tap (which is my weakest), and wants me to teach him ballet (which is my strongest) at home.  DH is totally down with it, either way. 

 

I would make a FIRM stance with your extended family about any and all teasing related to any activities or play he choses.  That would not fly in my house or as a guest in other people's houses. Period.  It's bullying, and bullying from an adult to a child is just beyond.


Heather, WAHM to DS (01/04)DD (06/06). Wed to DH(09/97)
The4OfUs is offline  
#13 of 16 Old 01-04-2011, 05:54 AM
 
wishin'&hopin''s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: liminality
Posts: 830
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Ballet is a GREAT way to get the fundamentals of dance technique down--I'm pretty sure most of the hip hop/jazz/modern professional folk have taken a few classes ;)  And, the strength that dancers need to have is amazing--their sport relies completely on their bodies and ability to use them well!  I danced for years and danced in high school with guys in a few of my dance classes.  Guys who (if they were straight) got to spend time with oodles of teenage girls (let's just say they never lacked for dates) and if they were gay it was an amazingly supportive environment.

 

Which I only mention because I know our culture often leads to folks inferring that a boy child who enjoys theater/dance is gay.  Which is really a bummer that anyone's love of dance gets connected to their sexuality!

 

That said...our boy child will take ballet--because regardless of his sports/dance interests when he's big it's an amazing way to gain coordination, discipline and strength.  I am already preparing to pitch a fit that the cheap recreation center ballet class for 3/4s in our area is called "little princess ballet".  

 

I hope your son has a BLAST dancing!!!


  Two moms and two boys enjoying the truth that love always wins!!!  joy.gifjoy.gifpartners.gif
 

wishin'&hopin' is offline  
#14 of 16 Old 01-04-2011, 05:57 AM
 
The4OfUs's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 4,897
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by wishin'&hopin' View Post

  I am already preparing to pitch a fit that the cheap recreation center ballet class for 3/4s in our area is called "little princess ballet".  

ROCK ON!!!

 

 

You know, you made a great point, ballet is a great foundation for ANY sport or activity.  A few years of balet and learning about that core and balance is good for anybody, no matter what they go on to do.


Heather, WAHM to DS (01/04)DD (06/06). Wed to DH(09/97)
The4OfUs is offline  
#15 of 16 Old 01-04-2011, 06:33 AM
 
ollyoxenfree's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 4,895
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by KaylaBeanie View Post

I believe very strongly in the arts, so all my children will be enrolled in ballet at 18 months and start an instrument at 4/5, regardless of whether they're a boy or girl. The way I see it, if my son is straight (since so many people worry about ballet being too "feminine") then he is set in his teenage years, because he'll be outnumbered twenty to one by girls whistling.gif



My teens attend a performing arts high school (one in music, the other in drama) and the girls outnumber the boys, with the biggest imbalance in the dance stream, despite the administration's efforts to attract more boys. Yeah, those boys have it made. They are surrounded by beautiful, talented, joyful, expressive young women who particularly like the boys who can dance. There don't seem to be many lonely boys in the school.  

 

OP, dance is one activity that DS didn't try when he was younger. I offered to enrol him in classes, especially after his sister started ballet and jazz, but he declined. I regret it a little, because I think he's now taken on the idea that he can't dance, which is terrible. Our culture is one of the few in history that has relegated dance to a past-time that only a few specially talented artists can perform, while everyone else watches. If your DS likes to dance, I'd definitely keep helping him find opportunities.    

ollyoxenfree is offline  
#16 of 16 Old 01-04-2011, 07:27 AM
 
alana1980's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My son (5 year old) takes violin at a school of performing arts.  Every time he peeks in on a ballet class, he begs to join.  I'm going to let him, just waiting for our schedule to calm down a bit before adding another activity.

 

alana1980 is offline  
Reply

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off