3 thoughts on “Why I Bought Boys’ Underwear For My Daughter

  1. I loved this article. The young girl buying underwear reminds me a lot of my 9 year old cousin. She, just like most girls, loves disney princesses and playing dress up. She also, however, loves going fishing and superheroes. When she started wearing “big girl” underwear she asked her mom why she couldn’t have superhero underwear like her three older brothers. Her mom had no choice but to tell her that they did not make superhero underwear for little girls. Sheridan actually ended up stealing her brother’s underwear and wearing it around the house!

    I think it is awesome that the father in this article wasn’t ashamed to let his young daughter wear boy’s underwear. It shows her at a young age that she does not have to fit in with the gendered norms. I remember loving to play skateboarders with my brother. We would slide around the house pretending to do awesome tricks. I did not see skateboard as a man’s sport, I saw it as a way to connect with my brothr. I too love superheroes. If I knew I had the option of wearing boys superhero underwear when I was younger then I would have jumped on that opportunity. Children hold interest, those interest do not always shape our gender identity. For example, this young girl is not going to be obviously masculine just because she likes to wear Star Wars underwear. In fact in the article it said that she alternates between princess and star wars underwear!

    If more parents let their children decide what clothes they wear, maybe the gendered norms in our society wouldn’t be so appearant. Growing up I always wore a backwards baseball cap, I also wore the same red polka-dot dress almost every day. Just because one item I wore was more masculine did not mess up my gender identity. I still identify as female, I just liked wearing a boy’s baseball cap. Because my parents gave me some freedom to choose, I am now more accepting of others’ choices when it comes to their gender identification.

  2. I found his article really interesting and it opened my eyes further to the ways in which our culture establishes and maintains gender norms. I have three younger siblings all under the age of 12 (one sister is 11, my brother is 8, and my other sister is 7) so I am forced to watch cartoons for most of the summer while I am babysitting them. Although they are not the same gender, they enjoy watching many of the same shows. There are many gender non-specific shows that they enjoy watching such as Phineas and Ferb, SpongeBob, Adventure Time, and Scooby Doo. However, my sisters enjoy watching Pokémon, Power Rangers (yes it is still airing) and Dragon Ball Z just as much as my brother enjoys watching iCarly, Princess and the Frog and Hannah Montana. However, by placing certain characters only on one sex’s clothing it is forcing children, through imaging, that girls should be helpless princesses while boys should be strong superheroes. I don’t see why equally distributing television characters to both girls’ and boys’ clothing is a problem. It is not as if my sisters will become more masculine from wearing a Dragon Ball Z shirt anymore than my brother will become feminine from wearing a Princess and the Frog shirt. Children do not care about gender norms or even see them, all they want to do is wear their favorite character to school and look cool. It further shows how gender norms are perceived as essential and unchangeable in our society. When big business decides that they would rather keep gender norms than make millions it shows the stagnant position of our culture’s two-based gender system.

  3. I personally found this article very intriguing and relatable to my own life. I am the middle child of my family with one much older sister and a brother who is two years younger than me. I believe both of my siblings helped shape who I am today and vice versa. While my sister would show me how to put on make up and how to dress, my brother taught me how to shoot and airsoft gun and play N64. I have to admit, growing up I enjoyed doing “boy things” better than “girl things” and I am proud to say I was sort of a tom-boy. In this article, the little girl’s father questions why only the boys section of underwear sports Star Wars and DC characters when little girls are fans of these franchises also. I too came across this question when I was growing up.

    When I learned how to play Mario Cart on N64, Yoshi became my FAVORITE character. I also was obsessed with Pokémon (I still have a NidoQueen keychain on my keys today). However, I would have to go into the boys section of a store to get anything related to either of these characters. I was confused and upset when they didn’t have shirts or socks that were small enough to fit me. My mom would also get annoyed, however she would buy me a shirt a few sizes too big simply because I wouldn’t stop asking her if I could get it. I agree with the father in the article who states that the company would increase their revenue if they targeted both males and females. Why not have a big wall of underwear with all characters and styles that fit both boys and girls? Maybe a little boy would love to have a Princess Peach shirt but can’t buy one because the company only makes small, female fitting shirts. I believe this is an example of society creating gender norms. It bothers me that the companies have control over how little boys and girls dress without giving them the option to decide for themselves.

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