Jump to content

Do pink clothes and "girly" stuff send the wrong message to daughters?


  • Please log in to reply
212 replies to this topic

#1 Guest_Sunnycat_*

Posted 29 January 2013 - 09:40 AM

My favourite colour is pink, I love all things that sparkle, I love jewellery, accessories, make up and colour and florals and all sorts of "girly" crap. I love dresses and shoes and anything bright and shiny. Skin care products, hair care products I love them all.

Apparently I am expecting a DD and alas have gone out and purchased a few pink items and hair accessories and other kinds of crap, because I like them. A few people have commented asking why I would do this to a daughter? It's not with malicious intent, I think just an extension of things I love and because I'm the one buying them I am choosing what I like (if that makes sense).

I'm not into sexual isn't children at all. I do like dresses though. Obviously when she is old enough to choose her own clothes I will buy what she chooses (obviously within reason).

It's weird because with my son I never gave it much thought, he has pink clothes and nappies and toys and copious amounts of sparkling crap and no one has ever commented and I never thought about it much before. He has dolls and a toy kitchen but has navigated to loving his toy trucks.

I guess my question is does it send the wrong message to dress a baby girl in headbands and dresses and tights and sparkle? I don't want her growing up thinking she HAS to like these things. Is it the start of stereotyping her into a pigeon hole?

I hope my question makes sense!



#2 KatakaGeoGirl

Posted 29 January 2013 - 09:49 AM

I believe there is something innate about most girls liking girly stuff and being attracted to it regardless. I had a party of 5 year olds - about 10 of them and my DD got makeup from her aunt. You should have seen the girls giggling faces; the rest of the party was a bit of a makeup party. They ALL loved the glitz and the glamour. No-one was standing around guiding that, they were all just drawn to it. That has to say something.

I like glitz and pink and all things girly. My girls do to. They want to wear makeup and be girly. I haven't taught them that; it is just something they are.

#3 Soontobegran

Posted 29 January 2013 - 09:58 AM

I also think it is inate in most girls to prefer the softer or 'prettier' colours and actually see nothing wrong with it at all.
As the mum of 4 girls and 1 boy who was born into a 'pink home' he soon let us know that was not what he liked and it had nothing to do with us trying to force colours/toys/games on him that were supposed to be gender specific.
Enjoy it sunnycat, she will let you know when the time comes whether she wants to keep up the pinks...mine didn't and that was fine.

When women and men and girls and boys have equal amounts of oestogen and testosterone then perhaps we'll see different behaviours but since it isn't going to happen then I say go with the flow.

#4 CallMeFeral

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:02 AM

I hate girly stuff and dressed DD very unisex. Now she lives to wear makeup and only wants princess stuff  ddoh.gif

I think there's probably more danger in subconsciously focusing on looks in a child. I do worry because I'm always telling DD how beautiful she is - because I can't help it, she is! I tell DS the same, but there comes a point when girls clothes become more 'dressy' than  boys clothes and it becomes more instinctive to tell them they are beautiful when they are dressed up (for a party etc) - and at that point I think girls start getting a lot more looks-focused complements than boys.
I don't want them to think looks are that important. But I can't keep my mouth shut when they are so georgeous!
I tell them they are smart and so on too - but tbh they are georgeous more than they are smart at the moment so they hear that more Tounge1.gif

#5 starfire

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:03 AM

Make the most of it! biggrin.gif Your DD may end up hating the colour pink as she gets older lol!
I know I went through a stage where I HATED anything girly, including dolls! But now I love pink and think girly things are cute (go figure) rolleyes.gif

I don't see an issue with it and have purchased a lot of things in pink for our baby (who is said to be a girl as well) and I haven't even thought twice about it.

#6 QueenIanthe

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:05 AM

Possibly.

But I do think that if you like pink sparkly stuff then enjoy it! I found the girly stuff so nice-even the basic Tshirts would have a little ruffle on the sleeves. Loved it after three boys.

#7 *LucyE*

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:05 AM

QUOTE
I guess my question is does it send the wrong message to dress a baby girl in headbands and dresses and tights and sparkle? I don't want her growing up thinking she HAS to like these things. Is it the start of stereotyping her into a pigeon hole?

I don't think it is a problem but then I did dress my DD is copious amounts of pink and frills.

My quasi feminist SIL insisted that her daughter was not going to wear pink and refused gifts of pink clothing etc.  Her DD then grew to an age where she could express her own wishes and would only wear pink LOL.  I feel that SIL turned it into an issue because of her stance.

My DD's current favourite colour is royal blue so I don't think the pink onesies did her too much harm.  The important thing is to listen to them and maintain an open dialogue.  My DD loves skirts, sparkles and frills but she doesn't dress in them to please others.

#8 CallMeFeral

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:07 AM

QUOTE (economist99 @ 29/01/2013, 10:57 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The groovers dressed their baby daughters in black but ended up regretting it.


Did not regret it thanks! DD always rocked the dark colours better than the pastels - her black onesie with black sequin hairband at 4mo is a favourite memory! She was such a funky chicken laughing2.gif

But once she got to choose her own clothes she prefers brighter things and I don't get a say sad.gif  I have the MOST BEAUTIFUL dark grey velvet opera-style coat - will she wear it? No. But her crappy pink stuff - oh yeah.

QUOTE (soontobegran @ 29/01/2013, 10:58 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I also think it is inate in most girls to prefer the softer or 'prettier' colours and actually see nothing wrong with it at all.
As the mum of 4 girls and 1 boy who was born into a 'pink home' he soon let us know that was not what he liked and it had nothing to do with us trying to force colours/toys/games on him that were supposed to be gender specific.

It may still have been socialised though. I think it's more innate for ALL kids to like bright colours. I remember taking DS to the shoe shop and trying to get him 'boys' shoes in their horrible dark greens and blacks - and all he wanted was the girls stuff - silver - pink - gold - beautiful! And who could blame him? The boys stuff was really ugly and dull in comparison...
But I think it gets bred out of boys pretty early. I haven't forced anything on my kids but they still come home from daycare with the whole "pink is for girls" b*llsh*t. And even subconsciously, he must notice at some point that all his clothes ARE a very different hue from DD's, and I guess he'll internalise that.

#9 BetteBoop

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:08 AM

If pink was an innate preference why did it used to be a male colour only a generation ago? If make up is a feminine biological imperative, why have men worn it throughout the ages, and why is it a male grooming practice in many cultures?

Socialisation along gender roles is so intense, it's impossible to prise apart what is nature and what is nurture. As is evidenced in this thread already, people presume because all little girls like something, it's proof of biology.

But from the moment a baby is born, the contents of their nappy determines how they are dressed and ultimately how they are treated.

As a parent, we dress our kids in what we prefer ourselves so if these things are you preference, it's natural you would choose them for a child.

But little girls are told from day one that their uniform is pink and sparkly. Regardless of what you choose, by age 3, when she's old enough to know she's a girl and identify with other girls, this is what she will want to wear.

#10 PurpleWitch

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:08 AM

Nope. But I hate those big ugly head bands on bald babies!!

#11 MrsLexiK

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:15 AM

I am very girlie, but I don't want to push that onto my child, just like my DH is very blokey and I do not want to push that onto my child either.

#12 Wigglemama

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:16 AM

I think people really over think things these days. Basically if you want to dress your daughter in pink, do so. The naysayers can do what they want as well. Don't allow them to make you think you are doing anything wrong. You are not damaging your unborn child. One day she will decide for herself what colour she wants to wear. I have two daughters who haven't work pink for around 4 years. My youngest at 4 yo, tells me her favourite colour is pink. I'm sure she will hate it in five years time.

Edited by Wigglemama, 29 January 2013 - 10:17 AM.


#13 Soontobegran

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:24 AM

QUOTE (Beetlebop @ 29/01/2013, 11:08 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
But little girls are told from day one that their uniform is pink and sparkly. Regardless of what you choose, by age 3, when she's old enough to know she's a girl and identify with other girls, this is what she will want to wear.



Nope , my baby girls were in white, red, yellow, black, blue and green as I didn't like pink so much but yes, by the time they were 3 they were asking for pinks, fairies and glitz......since they were not in childcare or under the affect of any social pressures I figured they did so because it was inate.

To admit that there is a biological difference between women and men that may influence our likes and dislikes does not automatically suggest that being female is the lesser of the two sexes.

#14 *LucyE*

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:28 AM

QUOTE
But little girls are told from day one that their uniform is pink and sparkly. Regardless of what you choose, by age 3, when she's old enough to know she's a girl and identify with other girls, this is what she will want to wear.

Not always.  I agree socialization plays a large part and the greatest influence of our children while they are young, are us, their parents.

I dressed DD is impractical, but gorgeously pink, frilly things while she was young.  By age 3, she decided her favourite colour was silver and gold.  Now at age 6, her favourite colour is blue.  She still wears pink but she is in no way a demure, 'well behaved', good girl.  She's a strong and confident young person.  I like to think a big part of that comes from DH and I, not the colours of clothing she has been supplied with.

If the message a child receives is, 'you only look good in pink', then I can understand it may be damaging.  But most thoughtful parents wouldn't do that.

#15 EBeditor

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:30 AM

Dress them in whatever you like. By the age of 2 or so they will start to make their own choices!
Both my kids (boy and girl) love sparkly crap, as do I.

My only issue with girls and clothing is when people dress their girls in clothes that restrict their play, e.g impractical shoes, 'good' dresses they don't want to get dirty.

I am wearing a pink blouse today and consider myself quite the feminist.

#16 Froger

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:33 AM

Oh bollocks to those PPs. Of course it is not innate for girls to love pink glittery stuff, high heels and have long hair. Nor is it innate for boys to prefer blue and short hair and sensible shoes.

Check out The Duke of Burgundy (around 1700 I would think) wearing pink stockings, lots of glam and glittery gold and high heels.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Nicolas_...C3%A8re_003.jpg

This is how men used to dress ALL THE TIME.

I REST MY CASE.

ETA: The Duke of Burgundy is on the far right if you didn't already guess. But the other guys aint looking shabby either. One of them has pink frilly things on his high heels.

Edited by SarahM72, 29 January 2013 - 11:03 AM.


#17 BetteBoop

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:34 AM

QUOTE (soontobegran @ 29/01/2013, 10:24 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Nope , my baby girls were in white, red, yellow, black, blue and green as I didn't like pink so much but yes, by the time they were 3 they were asking for pinks, fairies and glitz......since they were not in childcare or under the affect of any social pressures I figured they did so because it was inate.

To admit that there is a biological difference between women and men that may influence our likes and dislikes does not automatically suggest that being female is the lesser of the two sexes.


I don't think childcare is the only form of socialisation. Socialisation is the process of gradually communicating values and attitudes to children. It happens on a daily basis and is through dealings with people as well as messages taken from the media about gender roles.

Pink is still a baby boy colour in some countries. My family is from Europe and it's still not common practice for girls and boys to be separated along the same colour lines as in Australia.

If pink was an innate choice, it should be consistent throughout the world.

There are biological differences between the sexes. But having a vagina doesn't pre-determine your colour preference. If they did, all mature women would still love pink. Most women in my age bracket seem to prefer black or grey.

#18 kpingitquiet

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:38 AM

I think pink/purple/sparkles, to the exclusion of all else, can send the wrong msg, yes. Pink, though not so originally, has come to be associated with gentility, frivolity, and princessy airheadedness. Not the best combo there.

We have never really bought anything pink for our daughter (2yo) but that's because she has pink-buying grandparents. So, the end result is that she has a full rainbow of colors to choose from every day, a balance of pants and dresses, ballerinas and dinosaurs, robots and butterflies, and she loves them all on different days.

#19 QueenIanthe

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:39 AM

QUOTE (CallMeProtart @ 29/01/2013, 11:07 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I have the MOST BEAUTIFUL dark grey velvet opera-style coat - will she wear it? No.


Oh man that would be heartbreaking!

#20 CallMeFeral

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:40 AM

QUOTE (soontobegran @ 29/01/2013, 11:24 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Nope , my baby girls were in white, red, yellow, black, blue and green as I didn't like pink so much but yes, by the time they were 3 they were asking for pinks, fairies and glitz......since they were not in childcare or under the affect of any social pressures I figured they did so because it was inate.

To admit that there is a biological difference between women and men that may influence our likes and dislikes does not automatically suggest that being female is the lesser of the two sexes.


Did they not watch any TV STBG? Or see any other children?
Of course there are biological differences, but I highly doubt colour preference is one of them. We don't see through our genitals, or with our hormones.
Sparkles are pretty, it's not surprising kids like them. Boy OR girl.

#21 SeaPrincess

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:42 AM

Our neighbour refused all things pink and girly for her baby.  Her 3-yo DD now refuses anything else and is often seen heading off wearing a tutu.  I'm not a fan of insipid baby colours, so DD has worn bold colours all her life - fuchsia (which MIL hated on a baby), red, greens and blues.  She also now chooses what she wants.

Do what you like.  She'll be telling you what she likes soon enough!

#22 BadCat

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:48 AM

QUOTE (Katakacpk @ 29/01/2013, 10:49 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I believe there is something innate about most girls liking girly stuff and being attracted to it regardless. I had a party of 5 year olds - about 10 of them and my DD got makeup from her aunt. You should have seen the girls giggling faces; the rest of the party was a bit of a makeup party. They ALL loved the glitz and the glamour. No-one was standing around guiding that, they were all just drawn to it. That has to say something.

I like glitz and pink and all things girly. My girls do to. They want to wear makeup and be girly. I haven't taught them that; it is just something they are.


The group of 5 year olds wouldn't have flocked to the makeup because their mothers all wear it by any chance?  Or because they see women everywhere with painted faces?  

And you don't think you've taught your girls to be girly yet you admit to loving all things girly yourself.  You don't have to sit them down and instruct them to teach them.

I abhor the entire notion that girls should be decorated but boys look fine without any tweaking.  I think anyone who decorates their girls in ways they don't decorate their boys is perpetuating the ingrained notion that girls need help to look acceptable.  And I think that's wrong.

It's not the colour of the clothes that is the problem.  It's the frills, flounces, sparkles and princessy crap. A pink t-shirt is fine, a pink t-shirt with I Love Shopping emblazoned on it in diamantes is not and merely adds to the impression that women are brainless and only know how to be pretty and buy stuff.

#23 Guest_AllegraM_*

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:49 AM

If I have a girl, I intend to avoid excessive pink, sparkles and princess stuff because whenever I see a girl dressed like this in public, the first thing the majority of adults say to her is, "my my, don't you look pretty today". This is meant to be harmless but I don't like girls getting the message that looking pretty equals adult approval.

#24 BetteBoop

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:52 AM

QUOTE (BadCat @ 29/01/2013, 10:48 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I abhor the entire notion that girls should be decorated but boys look fine without any tweaking.  I think anyone who decorates their girls in ways they don't decorate their boys is perpetuating the ingrained notion that girls need help to look acceptable.  And I think that's wrong.


I think it was Gloria Steinham who said "make up is an apology for our natural faces".

Metrosexuals are rapidly learning that their natural faces require copious apologies. And unsurprisingly as men are realising that they need to focus on their appearances too, eating disorders and body image disorders are soaring in teen boys.

This is why people 'overthink' these messages.

#25 Guest_Sunnycat_*

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:57 AM

Hmmm. My son is accessorised and sparkly in his own way. I dress him in bright colours and stuff.

I hate slogans and princess crap though.

Maybe it is shallow because I try to dress DS "fashionably" in what I think looks good on him. Maybe I shouldn't be dressing and gender children "fashionably" at all?

Eta by fashionably I mean clothes I like that I think are nice, not trendy or anything like that.

Edited by Sunnycat, 29 January 2013 - 11:00 AM.





1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Five ways my second pregnancy is second best

As I roll into the second half of "Pregnancy: The Sequel", here is breakdown of the differences I have found thus far.

Domestic politics

Why I felt guilty about having a cleaner

Coming home to a clean house was a pleasure – and yet, I felt uneasy.

'Ugly' hearing aid ad leaves parents fuming

When Alecia Donoghue found out her baby would need hearing aids she worried about him becoming the target for schoolyard bullies.

Have you seen these missing children?

The Australian Federal Police has released the following information to locate some of Australia's missing children through the Family Law Court.

Margarita time

Keira Knightley welcomes first child

British actress Keira Knightley has become a first-time mother.

IVF patients in the dark over which clinics are least successful

Couples with fertility problems have little way of knowing which IVF clinics are the best performers despite significant differences between clinic success rates.

Couple forced to defend their decision to become parents

They met, fell in love and got married. Then, just like couples everywhere, Simon and Vicky Moore decided it was time to have a baby.

The one parenting tip that made all the difference

Amongst the useless, ill-informed advice we're given as new parents, many of us also receive nuggets of wisdom that make our lives just that little bit easier.

Five lies you tell yourself when you're pregnant

You can see it all now: glowing mumma with her gorgeous babe ... you know exactly what you're going to be like. Or perhaps you know exactly what you're not going to be like.

Family expecting fourth set of twins

A couple is expecting their fourth set of twins in five years.

The day my daughter almost drowned

We had six adults standing there, so I felt like I could relax a bit. After all, what could go wrong with so much supervision?

Sydney siege survivor names baby after victim Katrina Dawson

A Sydney barrister who survived the Lindt cafe siege has named her newborn daughter after her best friend who died in the tragedy.

The universal working mother experience

These days mothers need more than just traditional career advice.

Obama feels full force of toddler tantrum

Shopping centres, restaurants, the White House ... the list of places toddlers like to throw tantrums is endless.

Banishing bloat

How to avoid a bloated tummy

Here are some foods to eat in order to escape feeling ghastly and gassy.

The great new picture book for anxious kids

My son is a worrier by nature. I learnt long ago that it was completely pointless to say to him "Don't worry about it!".

Budget stripped more than $15b from families

The combined impact of the two budgets for low and middle income people was "devastating", new analysis by the Australian Council of Social Service shows.

Pregnant women urged to get flu shots

As the winter chill starts to arrive, NSW Health is urging pregnant women to get their flu shots.

65-year-old gives birth to quadruplets

A 65-year-old German woman, who already has 13 children, has given birth to quadruplets.

What you need to know about pregnancy and health insurance

It's not just waiting periods that couples need to consider - there are other factors to consider when thinking about health insurance.

Yummy mummy

Nicole Trunfio breastfeeds baby on Elle magazine cover

Australian model Nicole Trunfio has taken the concept of multitasking to a fashionable new level for Elle Australia.

Warnings after baby girl died while sleeping in bouncer

Parents have been warned about the dangers of letting babies sleep in bouncers and swings following the death of a three-month-old girl.

Coping with fatigue as a parent

Sleep deprivation is a real hazard of caring for a baby. But there are ways to manage the challenges of fatigue better.

A very 21st century issue: parents, parks and smart phones

It's not all the parents, and it's not all the time, but there is often at least one doing it. And sometimes, that 'one' is me.

Appliances

Faulty washing machines linked to house fires

More than 80,000 faulty Samsung washing machines pose a fire threat in homes throughout Australia despite a nationwide recall of the machines.

7 things you might not know about postnatal depression

Despite its widespread nature, there is still a great amount of mystery surrounding PND - and it's important to try unravelling as much of that as we can.

Seven questions you should be asking about your health cover

If the last time you assessed your health cover was five years ago, there?s a chance it may no longer suit your needs. To ensure it?s still right for your family, click here for seven questions to ask.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

How to use gas effectively in labour

Many women in labour don't use gas effectively and suffer more side effects than benefits. Here's how to get the most out of this pain relief option.

'He has gastro but that's okay, right?': sick kid etiquette

We cannot place all children who are sick in a bubble till they recover, but we can give other parents a choice about exposing their kids to them.

Welcome to Winter

Now that the colder months are here, Essential Baby as all the information you need for staying healthy and happy during the chilly season.

Ada Nicodemou: 'I can never be completely happy again'

Home and Away actress Ada Nicodemou has opened up about the loss of her stillborn baby.

10 things to consider when you're thinking about trying for a baby

Before you start tracking your menstrual cycle and reading up on the best positions to get pregnant, there are a few other things you may want to consider.

How special surgery and IVF can create a post-vasectomy baby

Cricket legend Glenn McGrath and his second wife Sara are expecting their first child together, thanks to IVF and a delicate surgical sperm retrieval process that helped the couple to conceive.

Belle Gibson's mother 'disgusted and embarrassed'

The mother of disgraced wellness blogger Belle Gibson has accused her daughter of lying about her childhood in an attempt to garner public sympathy.

Doctor's mobile phone 'left inside c-section mum'

A new mum claims a doctor left his mobile phone inside her after delivering her baby via caesarean section.

I'm a mum and I'm following my dreams

I want my kids to know that no matter what happens in life, you can still be who it is that you've always wanted to be.

Those first daycare days

I had this innate 'mum' moment the other day.

'If one person had listened, my life would have been so different'

Katherine's father will die in prison for the horrifying sexual abuse of his daughter. Yet she is the one with the true life sentence.

This new plan undermines breastfeeding and baby health at everyone's expense

Mothers, babies, the health system and the wider society are going to pay the price of this new budget.

Couple to celebrate terminally ill baby's birthday in unique way

Baby Jai Bishop has lived at Starship Hospital for the past seven months, with his parents flying back and forth from Hokitika, 1100km away, to be by his side.

Life On Mars

It's men who need 'retraining', not women

We are all responsible for our own behaviour. Telling victims to harden up is wrong.

Baby Gammy's dad tries to claim charity money

The biological father of baby Gammy has reportedly tried to access charity money raised for the little boy's medical costs.

Where are the childcare places?

It?s all very well to encourage women to work if they choose to, but how can the measures lead to increased workforce participation when women are once again left holding the baby?

The pain of not having babies and not knowing why

After seven years of wishing, hoping, crying, punching pillows and shouting "why me?!", the end result is more than I ever thought possible.

Getting your family finances in order

Whether you're after a new car for a growing family, a bigger house, or are just fixing up your finances, here are the basics on borrowing.

Mum shares graphic selfie to warn against tanning

A mum has shared a graphic photo of her skin cancer treatment as a warning to others.

Does parenthood make us happier?

We can certainly gain higher levels of happiness when we become parents, but the trick is to not get overwhelmed by the pressures of raising our kids.

No, having a dog is not like having a human child

It's obvious these people dote on their pets, but they're barking up the wrong tree.

 

Top baby names

Baby Names

The numbers are in and we can now bring you the 2014 top baby name list for Australia.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.