We went to visit some new friends, and Dash was surrounded by boys.
For the first time ever (that I have seen), I saw him play like a boy not like a little brother.
This is very significant as the lad is 3 years old, and while I am not concerned about his masculinity, I am a tad bit sad that his role in life thus far has been as a little brother.
Who gets dressed up as a princess.
And plays with fairies.
And whose favorite color wavers between purple and pink.
Because that’s all he knows. He is inudated with girlie things because I have to face facts: my girls are girlie girls. I thought I would have a tomboy. Why? I don’t know since I was a fairly girlie girl. Don’t get me wrong, I love my girlie girls. I just have to embrace what comes with it.
And apparently their little brother embraces too.
But as we were surrounded by boys, Dash started building guns out of his legos doing what the other boys were doing. They were running around the house shooting all the alien ships and enemy rangers to protect everyone. Dash was having a blast and I was enjoying watching him get into it.
Especially since he was standing in his white diaper, his hulk wife-beater tank, and bare feet seriously and intently shooting from the hip. I wish I had had my camera. He was hilariously fun to watch.
Fast forward a couple of days.
I was relaying this story to our cousin who is about to have her baby in 6 weeks. Her response was: You let him play with guns?
Well, yeah. Shouldn’t I?
Then, I realized that she works in the innercity. Innercity kids live in a different culture than suburban kids do. Innercity kids may be surrounded by the real threat of getting shot at everyday. I know that someone from the suburbs can be shot, but it isn’t an everyday threat.
At least I don’t think so.
I don’t think it’s wrong to have guns. But I grew up in small town Minnesota surrounded by hunters. I believe they should be able to deer hunt and duck hunt and on and on. In contrast, though, I see the validity of the fear of guns in city cultures. Power and fear rule, and I would not want my children to re-enact that in their play.
If we lived in the innercity and my children were surrounded by those threats daily, I wouldn’t want them to play guns. If I lived somewhere where the main reason to have a gun was self protection, I wouldn’t want them to play gunfights. If my kids were playing with each other by pretending to threaten to kill each other, I wouldn’t want them to play guns.
For now I don’t mind my little boy playing guns shooting at imaginary spaceships. Honestly, I want him to play it more because I don’t think it’s going to make him more aggressive. But if you don’t want you son to play like my son because of the culture you live in, it makes sense to me.