When I buy toys for Annabel, I find myself drawn to the girl toys – the pinks and purples, the baby dolls, the teddy bears. She responds positively to them, so I’d never doubted they were good choices.
This last weekend, she had 24-hour access to boy toys – trucks, balls, and action figures. She was all about them – pushing the cars carefully around the room, rolling and bouncing the balls, and dancing action figures across the couch cushions. She’d occasionally pick up a stray baby doll or magic fairy wand, but for the majority of the weekend, a race car was always lodged in her (carefully monitored to prevent choking hazards) hand.
I’ve chalked the whole thing up to two possible reasons. One: these were someone else’s toys and therefore vastly superior to the piles of toys back home; or two: I’ve been doing her a disservice by only buying her toys geared toward her gender.
Obviously, the “someone else’s toys” thing is always going to be a part of it. I know we’ve all wasted money on toys our kids LOVED at their friends’ houses but ignore at home. I do worry about number two, though. I’m not really worried about gender roles or anything like that. I want to make sure I’m exposing her to all sorts of things, and I’ve realized that I’ve really only been exposing her to GIRL things.
But then I think, “do parents of boys worry about this sort of thing?” None of my friends have bought baby dolls or kitchen sets for their sons. So maybe I am being overly sensitive. Or maybe not.
What do the rest of you in this situation do? Have you brought boy toys into your all-girl household, or vice-versa?
Mike would love to run out and buy some cars. For Annie, of course.