Thursday, 6 October 2011

Showing and Telling

I'm feeling slightly uneasy that I felt slightly uneasy, when five year old Rory suggested he bring his 'handbag' into school tomorrow, for show and tell. I know that this doesn't imply anything at all, and it certainly wouldn't be the end of the world if it did. Intellectually speaking, I also know that it's a good sign that the gender roles aren't too entrenched yet, and actually, he's a really outdoorsy little boy who loves Lego and dinosaurs and toy cars....and his handbag.
It's not even a proper handbag as such- it's a cute little bag that my Benefit makeup came in-it has ropes for handles and a metal clasp ....and is pink with leopard print- yes really ! As soon as he saw it, he coveted it. He has an ever rotating collection of goodies in it- a toy car, a conker, a rubber band, a few bits of Lego - historically male treasures wrapped up in a girly package. And that's all good . So why did I feel a slight reluctance at his suggestion to bring it to school and show it off?
I suppose  I don't want him to be laughed at by other kids who are a little more streetwise than him. I don't want him to then reject his natural impulses, in order to conform and fit in . Maybe I should have encouraged him regardless of my own reticence, or did I do the right thing when I gently guided him with other suggestions? Or maybe there is no definitive right answer. Hmmmmm. What do you think?

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