I remember as a little girl climbing trees and skipping rocks in the creek. G.I. Joe and Barbie had quite the relationship for some time and they were really fancy driving a Tonka dump truck. Yes, you remember those big, metal yellow trucks. What else would G.I. Joe drive? I watched WWE and collected the trading cards along with every baby doll that I could find. I was always kind enough to use my Easy Bake to whip them up a good meal.
I played with ‘boy’ toys and I played with ‘girl’ toys, and no one ever said a thing to me. But as soon as a boy picked up Barbie, WWII began and you’d hear everyone, even the other kids, laughing or asking why he was playing with a doll. Well, G.I. Joe is a doll, you know?
Maybe we should stop adding gender-specific toys to the toy box and let our kids play with the toys they choose. So what if he wants to play Barbie with his girlfriend! Not only does it allow your child more interaction with a broader group of kids, more knowledge and tons of fun, it also helps them later in life since your now man won’t think that activities such as watching the kids, washing the dishes or cooking a meal is wrong or a ‘woman’s job.’
As I said, G.I. Joe is a doll and little boys have tons of other action figures and toys on the market that I say qualify for ‘dolls.’ So, they’re doing it already. Why not allow them to go ahead and play with the doll with the dress on or with Ken and Barbie (or, in my case G.I. Joe)?
Perhaps it is time to stop thinking in such a gender specific way and start letting your little boy play! Your little one learns from you, the parent, so always keep in mind what you are teaching him when you tell him not to play with that little girl or to put the baby doll down.
Maybe, just maybe, if we quit putting all of these labels on our children and allowed them the freedom to explore, to let their curiosity and imagination soar, there would be fewer single mothers in the world and fewer relationships gone bad. It’s crazy to think what something as simple as letting your boy play with a Barbie doll could do for the world.