When Bun Bun wears clothes at all, she’s mainly been wearing stuff I inherited from a friend who had a boy. The first time we put her in a pair of blue pants, Mr. Bunny sang the following spontaneous little song:
Everyone’s gonna think you’re a boy.
And you won’t get into a good college,
All because of your gender-inappropriate pants.
It’s better with the music.
Now that we’ve taken her out in public, she has in fact been mistaken for a boy many times. I don’t care a bit. I mean, maybe I care a tiny bit because I worry that the mistaken person will be embarrassed, but I am not offended or horrified or anything. And who knows–perhaps being mistaken for a boy will end up working in her favor. People will be like, Oh, what a cute baby! I’m going to pay him an equitable salary! And when they find out she’s a girl it will be TOO LATE and she’ll earn earn, like, 25% more than the other girl babies.
I’m not sure how much I care about the whole gender socialization thing, and I’m certainly not claiming there’s anything wrong with covering a girl baby in pink bows, so if that’s how you roll, don’t take any of this as a criticism. But I did notice that the first time I put her in something girly (a lavender onesie from her grandmother), it felt kinda…weird. Like I was suddenly hyper-aware of her girlishness, whereas before she’d just been a person.
On the other hand…I went to the fabric store and came home with THIS.
|Because, you know…CUTE! (I am at least planning to make it in blue. But that’s just because I happen to like blue and therefore have a lot of blue fabric lying around.)|
Not going to be mistaken for a boy in that.
So while I think about how to make sure her sex doesn’t limit her (or minimize the extent to which it does), I’ve come up with an interim compromise. When I find myself cooing things I might not also say to a boy, like you’re so sweeeeeeeet! Or you’re so preeeeeetty! I’m careful to add And you’re so stroooong! You’re so raaaational! You’re sooooo good at maaaaaath!