Tuesday, December 25, 2012

The need to play "Little Daddy"

i was at the toy store today, picking up my son's xmas gift. i went past the "little mommy" series of toys, and realised, suddenly, that there are no "little daddy" toys anywhere. We inculcate nurturing in the play of our girl children - across the world. But not in the play of our male children.

In that, we assume that male children do not have a "need to nurture". The need to love is as natural as the need to be loved. The need to nurture is as natural as the need to be nurtured.

At night, as my son sacrifices his play time to "put me to sleep" - patiently lying down and waiting for mater to relax, i wonder whether that assumption is true.

The need to nurture exists in everyone, and to tell a child that his need to nurture needs to be left unacknowledged, and, worse still,  needs to be denied, is doing something very wrong for our male children.

We tell our male children that their only needs are need to win, need to conquer, and need to race. These needs we acknowledge in the toys of our children - racing tracks, ninja swords, aeroplanes. But the need to love and nurture.. the need to play "little daddy" - where did that go? Why do we laugh at sons and boys who even EXPRESS that need, in the form of a hug or caring for a younger child, et al? But are perfectly comfortable with a girl child who displays nurturing behavior? Hell's bells, we even encourage it.

So, what kind of hypocrisy makes us deny a basic need in our male children, while accepting and applauding the same need in our girl children?

Has anyone wondered, the difference it would make, if boys played "little daddy"s in their growing up?

12 comments:

hitchwriter said...

the human mental conditioning begins so early ... at times we dont even realise what have we become conditioned to.. :(

Himanshu Tandon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Himanshu Tandon said...

The "little daddy" could be a dangerous concept.

The reason lies HERE

Frog-in-the-Well said...

The issue starts with the fact that boys are "not supposed" to play with a doll at all.. so ab initio, there is no market for Little Daddy dolls.. the pre-conditioning happens very early in life indeed

Onkar said...

you have raised a pertinent question. I never thought of it.

Srinivas Vooka said...

Hi,
This is not directly releated to your post but in some blog you have written positive comments about tell me why series of books, would like to know the details about the books like publisher and where it is available
You can send the reply if possible to following address:
vookasrini@gmail.com
Thanks and Regards, Srinivas.

Z said...

I have been surprised and infuriated that, since my children were small, children's toys have been more gender-orientated, not less. Everything 'girlish' is pink and covered with hearts and fairies, so that no self-respecting boy could go near it, and most of the boys' toys are ugly and violent. The rest of them are more fun and active than anything aimed at girls. The reason for this escapes me.

How do we know said...

hi hitchwriter: yes. we dont even realise it until one day it hits us smack!

hi HT: right. no comments. :) but we have all seen hands on daddies and i am yet to see a real life daddy treating their kid this way. :)

hi FITW: yes. and we are responsible for this "supposed to"

Onkar sir: vahi to. we dont even realise what we are doing and how its so damaging.

Hi Srinivas: i am sorry - lost touch with that series of books a long time ago. i used to like those books very much. but know nothing about their current prodution quality and updated content.

Hi Z: am glad u think that way too. i thought i was the only one seeing more polarised play stuff for boys and girls.



Manish Raj said...

HDWK - We will need to build such thoughts in our kid's (son's) mind first.

And given current situation, it may take time but eventually such thoughts will create demand for Little Daddy toys too. Any then toyshop will sell or start selling such toys once those are in demand.

Guess it is from home to shop; not from shop to home thought.

How do we know said...

Hi guruji: yes, thats right. thats why i m going out in 10 minutes and asking my son to fold the clothes with me. :-)

Shail Mohan said...

That's so true. My son had a little doll named Rosie :)

Pooja Sharma Rao said...

Patriarchal stereotypes not only opress women but limit men too.