"Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing. " -Helen Keller

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Boys vs. Girls

I continually joke about being outnumbered by the boys and our house having way too much testosterone but its true. Out of 2 adults, 3 kids, 2 dogs, 2 cats, and 3 fish, my dog Jolie and I are the sole females in a house full of males. Let me tell you, this makes for a wild and crazy household at times.

I grew up in a house that was almost the exact opposite. I am one of three girls and at least half of my childhood pets were female. My first thought when the doctor said those fateful words was, "What the hell do I do with a boy?" Don't get me wrong, I wasn't at all upset about being pregnant with a healthy boy. I just had NO fucking clue how to deal with boys. There are days I still think this.

The fundamental truth is that boys and girls are different. No matter how much equality we try to foster, no matter how many stereotypes we try to break, they are different! Thanks to Marty, I learned that pink tea carts can serve tea one moment and serve as a battering ram the next. Thanks to my older boys, I have learned that is doesn't matter how clean deer bones appear to be, the stench they produce when you boil them clean is overwhelming. (Definitely not one of my finer moments judgment wise)

I've learned to love hockey and appreciate a good game of baseball (but not on tv please). I can differentiate between a backhoe and a power shovel and know there is a difference between a bulldozer and a front end loader. I've learned about the phenomenal amount of food a hungry, growing boy can consume and that terrifies me when I think about the future. It may give new truth to the trite saying of someone eating you out of house and home.

I've also learned some things that are universal whether you are parenting a boy or a girl. I've learned that my heart will break right alongside my child's heart. And, nothing mends a hurting heart faster than a child wrapping their arms around you and saying, "I love you."

I have learned that no matter how hard you try to raise non-stereotypical males, certain things creep in. My jaw hit the floor the day Joey looked at me and said, "Pink is a girl color." Is it a big deal? No, it isn't. But, it still surprises you the day your child spouts off something you KNOW they didn't learn from you.

Most of all, I have learned that even though I'd like a little more estrogen in my household, I wouldn't trade being them mom to these three wild and crazy boys for ANYTHING.


Meari said...

Well said!

Luckily, I had two brothers and a sister growing up, so it equalled out. I was the tomboy and my sister was the girly-girl. I can live on both sides of the fence, per se: girly-girl or tomboy.

Now I have 5 nieces and 1 nephew (poor guy! lol) -- I prefer to "raise" girls as that's where I'm comfortable :) but I do make special effort to do "guy" things with my nephew.

Chris said...

Growing up it was me and my sister. (My brother is 13 years younger than me.) But we were mostly tomboys.
My son knows how to do "girly" things, including cross stitch. As long as we love them and do the best we can, who cares.
That being said, I'm sure Christa would let you borrow a girl for a bit if you need a fix.

~Tammy said...

It just boils down to loving a child for that alone. A child being loved - boy or girl.

I'm mother to 2 girls and Cute boys's children are also girls. I don't know how I'd deal with boys at this point.

Gaynor said...

I have 2 boys and a girl. Girls argue the same thing for days and days and days. Boys storm adn then it is over. No matter how well you try to bring them up, how pacifist you are, boys will make guns: out of sticks, lego, meccano, anything lol.
Makes it all kindda fun doesnt it!

Anonymous said...

I have 2 boys and would like another kid before i turn 40(two years away). Would like a girl so i have an excuse to play barbies with her and get all the girly clothes but you know what ?? I couldn't afford it there are just so many adorable clothes and all the barbies to choose from. My sons have never cared if they were in jeans and t-shirts everyday. but if i do have another i would be happy with a girl but raising two boys i can't imagine i would know how to raise a girl. so really i would love another boy i have that one figured out

Anonymous said...

what a good mama

It was all estrogen around here (except for my dad and the dads of the nieces when they were around) until my nephew was born 2 years ago. I still don't know what to buy a boy for his birthday...but I'm figuring it out. :)

Aunt Becky said...

Until Amelia was born, I was the solo XX in my house. Now I have her, and I'm pretending that together we can overpower the testosterone. Not so, but I like to live in denial.

Lavender Luz said...

I came from a family of girls, too! So I thought raising a girl would be much easier than raising a boy.

Not because of gender, but because of personality, I have found the opposite to be true.

No matter how gender neutral we tried to be, their hard-wiring comes through. Boy = swords and playing war games. Girl = make up and social scenes.

A Mom in Jacksonville, FL said...

What a neat post. How lucky your boys are to have a compassionate mommy like you! :)

battynurse said...

you are outnumbered. My house right now is a house full of girls. And yes it has occurred to me that if I had a boy I would have no idea what to do with him.

Beautiful Mess said...

I totally get what you mean about parenting a boy. Although mine is only 5, so I don't have as much experience as you do, but I was TERRIFIED when they said "it's a boy!!". I did not know how to be a mom to a boy, I'm a GIRL! I survived, still am, and having SO much fun! Who knew that mud and worms could make the best afternoon?

If you decide to continue to build your family, I hope you get to raise a girl. If not, your son will be surrounded by LOTS of boy stuff aka farts, burps and jumping off walls ;o)