Sunday, October 1, 2023
    HomeVerified WritersPhyllisYou say He/She...I say Tomboy

    You say He/She…I say Tomboy

    With every photo I see and every story I hear about Shiloh Jolie-Pitt’s personality, I see so many “likenesses” that I would never have imagined I’d have with Angelina Jolie (as a parent).  Now lets clarify. When Shiloh was a baby, Angie dressed her up in cute little dresses and patent leather shoes.  (Google her and you’ll see for yourself if you don’t remember.)  I’m guessing, it wasn’t until Shiloh started to develop her own personality, her own sense of style, her own views and opinions, likenesses and dislikes that she started not wanting to wear the frilly dresses that girls are stereotyped to wear.   I totally get that.  When my daughter was a baby, I dressed her up in cute dresses with matching hair accessories, ruffle socks and cute little flowered baby shoes.  It wasn’t until she discovered her love for the baseball hat that I started seeing my little girl slowly turning into a Tomboy.  From the baseball hat we went to the boys Hanes white t-shirt that she still continues to wear on a daily basis!  I struggled a lot with giving up my vision of what she would be and learned to accept that she is who she is and no matter what, I cannot change her, nor would I want to.  There are so many people who are afraid to just let their kids “be” and stick up for who your child is becoming, an individual!  When did that become such a bad thing? For this I completely respect and admire Angie for.  She is letting Shiloh be who she is…Shiloh, and she is not trying to conform her to what Hollywood or ‘society’ expects her to be like.  I LOVE that!

    Here is a bit of my story and as a parent, ask yourself, where are children hearing these and many other comments? It is true that they hear and see everything…more than we care to admit, so again, I say, if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all. I shared this a while back on Facebook but I feel it is necessary now to share it here since this is where I will be sharing most of my ‘child’ and ‘mom’ related real life stories.  I hope you can see that just because a girl likes baseball hats, short hair, wearing all black or white Hanes boys t-shirts (cause girls ones are cut too small and are rather uncomfortable if you ask me), or wanting to wear her big brothers baseball and football shirts and his jeans (cause they are looser -which they are…look at the legs!), playing with Nerf guns (that aren’t pink and sparkly thank goodness!)  and Lego sets (that do not scream I am a girl…which is a whole different topic) that each one is still a unique child and no matter what their outsides look like, they still require love, attention and affection, and that is what we as parents and as a society need to remember.  If you accept them for who they are (not what they look like), you will soon see that your child is strong, confident and will not let anything or anyone stand in their way of happiness from here on out.

    I was a bit ticked off the other day…now most of you know Gianna, she’s a bit of a tomboy…NOTHING wrong with that! However, I was just informed by her over the weekend that her “friends” call her “He/She”…I honestly was taken back by that nonchalant statement. I asked her who was calling her that to which she provided names of the girls. I asked her why they did that, she didn’t know…I told her that the next time they say that to her, stand up tall, and tell them, I am a girl and just because I don’t wear dresses, doesn’t mean I am any less a girl than you. (not sure what would actually come out but I could have said a few not so nice words…) I mean, really, these are kids she’s been in school with for 3 years and they are only 7. Seriously…I could have spit nails. Yes, she likes football and racing cars, and yes, she likes to wear sweatpants and comfy clothes…yes, she is witty and smart, yes, she is beyond cute with her long hair and crooked big kid teeth…since when is she any less a girl because she doesn’t wear a freaking dress and wear bows in her hair? Apparently the families of these girls don’t realize that all girls aren’t the same…some grow up to be famous race car drivers and astronauts…and even politicians…and they certainly have never heard of Pigtail Pals – Redefine Girly –so be careful who you call a “he/she” cause one day that “he/she” might be your…BOSS!

    I am bringing this up only because of Shiloh’s recent hair cut. What are your honest thoughts? Should we try and change a child who is perfectly happy within their own skin just to please others? If you are a perfectly happy adult, would you want someone trying to change you? Let’s think about this one….



    1. I was a tomboy. I did not like wearing dresses. I still would much prefer jeans, a feminine cut tshirt and a jacket. I do love fun jewelry. My friends were surprised to see me in a long gown for my wedding.

      Our daughter is far more of a girly girl than I ever was. She is just as likely to choose a skirt as leggings or jeans but with a sparkly top and sparkly sneakers and she is definitely old enough to choose her own clothes. It is not my style, but she is her own person and I respect that.

      To call a child a he/she is not only ridiculously judgemental but also mean and would have a terrible effect on a child’s self esteem. Ultimately, children learn their attitudes from other adults. I commend you for encouraging your daughter to be her own person. In the short run that may include some bumps in the road, but in the long run she will grow up to be the best kind of adult – tolerant and compassionate.

      • Thank you for sharing your comment. I know what it’s like to have a girly girl because my oldest is definitely one. It was very challenging for me as a parent to have two girls expecting for them both to like girl things and then slowly discover they are so completely different from each other. Once I realized, they are who they are, I began to learn to accept and embrace those differences and it has made me love and appreciate what they both bring to the world. Their differences is what makes them unique and special and every girl needs to feel confident for who they are, not what they are, what they look like, what they wear, or what toys they play with.

    2. Thanks for sharing this in Sits Sharefest! I do have pre-conceived notions about what girls “should” wear. It’s just part of my upbringing in the conservative South. That said, I don’t think anyone should ever be made fun of that way and I have learned a lot from my girls about accepting different styles and not “boxing them in” to MY style expectations. It is ever-evolving, though, as is their sense of style.

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