Saturday, May 1, 2010

Boys Don't Cry

There are all kinds of lies we tell people. No, that doesn't make your butt look fat, Oh wow your new haircut looks great... The ones that are for the better... Then there are the ones that hurt. Yes I did my homework, Yes I'm sticking to my diet, Or telling your doctor you don't smoke... Then there are the lies that society has told us to tell. Boys don't play with dolls, girls aren't supposed to like worms and slugs, Boys don't cry.

I just heard my neighbor across the way, the one pregnant with twin girls who already is having a high risk pregnancy plus on top of it all she is smoking.... She told her 4-5 year old nephew that "boys don't cry". He was upset about something, I'm not sure what, but her tone of voice was mean sounding. She snapped at him. He started to cry. She told him to stop crying like a baby. That Boys Don't Cry....

So what? Boys can cry. Everyone deserves to cry. Not just girls. Not just babies. If you get hurt, physically or emotionally, its ok to cry. I cry at movies, I cry for certain songs, I cry from sad stories on the news, and that was when I wasn't even dealing with pregnancy hormones!

Dan, don't kill me for saying it, but... You cry too! You cried when we had to find your kitty a home, you cried when I agreed to marry you, you tear up a bit when you talk about relatives you love who have passed... It makes me love you even more! You are not afraid to show your emotions and in my eyes that makes a man even more of a man. He isn't ashamed to FEEL.

I want my little boy to grow up to be able to feel. I don't want him to be a guy who shoves his feelings down inside him and chokes on them. I don't want him to think that they mean nothing. I will hug him and put a bandaid on a booboo when he cried from pain, I will hug him and kiss him and comfort him when he cries from fear. I hope I never snap at him and make him cry, but even if I do, I will be adult enough to admit I was wrong and ask for his forgiveness for losing my temper. Being the Mommy doesn't mean I am always right. (Same goes for Dads too.)

But that moment overhearing the neighbors... It made me wonder what other kinds of lies I am going to have to tell my son are not true.

I don't want anyone to tell him its not ok for boys to play dress-up, or try on different roles. A friend of mine who taught in a pre-school class said that Dads would come to pick up their children and yell at their boys for playing dress up, or wearing an apron in the kitchen play area. Some little boys wanted to put on high heels. They are 3... 4.. maybe 5 years old!!! Putting on high heels, or a dress, or an apron doesn't mean they are gay, or doing anything wrong! It means they are trying on all the different roles they have seen other people in their lives take on! They are trying out different ideas, learning, growing... Wearing high heels and a princess dress for an hour when you are 4 doesn't mean you will grow up to be a cross dresser or anything else! (But my Son, just promise me that if you DO dress up like a girl later on in life, you will do it with a SMIDGE of good taste? ok? Pink spandex mini skirts don't belong on ANYONE, male or female.... )

I might have a daughter later on too. Would I get mad at her for wearing work boots and a tool belt? I better not, or my mom would whoop MY butt! I was raised smarter than that!

So... what do I do if someone else tells my son that its not ok to play dress up? What if someone else tells him that its not ok to cry? or takes away his doll or stuffed animal that he nurtures?or tells him that its not ok to do something simply because of his gender?

I suppose all I can do is just teach him that sometimes people are wrong.

That sometimes, people start to think a certain way and nothing you say or do is going to change it. I can teach him to be stubborn about the things he feels are right. And most of all, I can love him and hug him, tell him I believe in him and that he can do ANYTHING in this whole wide world, even if it means wearing high heels to do it in.

Our society is changing so much, we are moving forward at an incredible rate, but there are still so many people who don't want to see that, who want things to stay stuck in the past.

To all of them, I just want to say, Keep your opinions off of my son! Keep your mouth shut, keep your ideas trapped in your own head.If you stay quiet, so will I. I won't call you a narrow minded jerk, or anything else. I will simply feel sorry that your kids won't get to learn all the things my son will learn.

Boys do cry, they feel, they love, they hurt and they need someone who is there for them, just like girls do. We all need someone, or something that matters to us. That's life, and we all deserve to feel every moment of it in whatever way we need to feel it. Even if it means being a man and crying about it.

"I would say I'm sorry
If I thought that it would change your mind
But I know that this time
I have said too much,
Been too unkind.

I try to laugh about it.
Cover it all up with lies.
I try and
Laugh about it
Hiding the tears in my eyes
'cause boys don't cry,
Boys don't cry"

-Boys Don't Cry -- The Cure

1 comment:

  1. You have brought tears to my eyes. You are wise beyond your years, Jessie.

    Mama J.


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