We're trying pretty hard to avoid this. No dolls just because she's a girl and should play with them. On the other hand, we aren't not giving her dolls just because she's a girl. We're giving her the room to figure out what she likes to play with, and what she doesn't. Ultimately, we're trying to let her become her own person. I'm not so naive as to think we don't have a lot of influence over who she becomes. We know that we do have a lot of influence based on our likes and dislikes.
I think we're doing a good job of this overall. We have a daughter who loves to play in her kitchen, play with dolls, and pretend to be a princess. She's also the same child who loves to play with cars, tools, and dirt. She's just as comfortable with a tea set as she is a Bob the Builder workbench. She likes to wear pink, but usually comes home from daycare covered in dirt.
As for our influence, well, she's a girl who likes her comic book movies and science fiction. Paige asks to wear her Spiderman, Batman and Superman jammies more than the pink princess ones. She sits and watches X Men cartoons with Daddy. She watches Star Trek and Star Wars with both of us. She likes to play video games too. I've got the only 3 year old I know of who asks for humus, cous cous, fish, and zucchini. We've definitely exposed her to a variety of foods.
We're trying to give her the room to find her own way and identity. Right now, my child is a lot like me, a walking contradiction of things she enjoys. I hope she keeps it up.
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