Saturday, September 3, 2011

Raising Two Boys and a Girl - Equal, and Different

A couple of people lately have asked me what it's like to raise a girl, and if girls are truly different than boys.  "Is the Pope Catholic?" I'll reply.

I know that each child is completely unique, and some girls are much more active than some boys.  I only have my experience to go on. 

My daughter is a complete girlie girl.  And I'm surprised that she is, because she has two older brothers and she has been surrounded by all things boy from birth.  Yet she wants to wear dresses every day.  She loves to play princesses and babies.

She carries a baby doll around with her everywhere.  She covers all her babies in blankets, feeds them, cuddles them and talks to them.  Once she was playing at a park, and she was pretending a pile of sticks was her baby.  A pile of sticks, people.  When I told her she had to leave it at the park, she 'tucked' the pile in and then when she ran away she kept looking back and blowing kisses at it. 

My boys use sticks for swords and light sabres.  I think it's the testosterone.  They are both very different in personality, but they still love playing 'war' and 'attack'.  They beg me to let them wrestle.  They love to play the 'pile on me' game - always a favourite at adult parties, also.  They seem to be constantly in motion, and I swear it is impossible to wear them out.  I love their quick laughter and exuberance.

My daughter is much more sensitive than the boys.  If you even raise your voice or use a stern tone with her she is likely to cry.  The boys don't seem to notice when I yell right in their ears.

Once I took one son and my daughter to my work, optimistically sure that I could keep them quiet for 30 minutes so I could finish a few things.  The entire time my daughter lay on the floor and coloured quietly.  My son was climbing my chair, climbing on my desk, opening all my drawers and cupboards and literally bouncing off the walls.  Never again.

I hope all this will help with being well-rounded, because although Ella knows every Disney princess, she also knows all about Pokemon and Star Wars.  And she'll play those things with the boys, but then they have to play with her as well, and have tea parties too. 

And although the boys chug their tea and it runs out of their nose and then they burp, I'd like to think they are getting the hang of tea party etiquette.  Slowly.  Okay....not at all.  But still, they know what tea parties are, and they enjoy them.

Another good thing is that boys don't faze my daughter in the slightest.  I loved it at my older son's birthday party, when she was the only little girl sitting there with eight other big boys.  She looked at them all and said, "So, guys, what are we going to play now?"

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