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To wonder why and one even cares if people mistake their dcs gender?

(70 Posts)
HerrenaHarridan Tue 25-Jun-13 08:58:48

What's the big deal?

Enlighten me because just don't get it.

Some people take huge pains to make it as obvious as possible their dc is a boy/ girl and get massively offended if people get it wrong. Recently one mother I know has had her dds ears pierced because she has such short hair everyone assumes she's a boy, another had chopped off her boys beautiful blonde curls because people assume he is a girl.

I just don't see the problem what difference does it make?

it's a baby, it's androgynous, it's supposed to be androgynous.

So please, enlighten me.
Do you care?
Why do you care?

HerrenaHarridan Tue 25-Jun-13 11:04:16

grin At angry potatoe

Well the conclusion seems to be I don't really know why it annoys me but it does. Fair enough.

BoysRule got something positive out of this though.

People do get very embarrassed at making this mistake but I just tell them not to worry. I wonder if they are embarrassed because they have been glared at before.

HerrenaHarridan Tue 25-Jun-13 11:07:29

Yoni: it's fine to be irrationally annoyed about any thing that's not "would you like a cup of tea" when managing big kid, little kid, lack of sleep and hormones smile

SupermansBigRedPants Tue 25-Jun-13 11:13:05

It wasn't so much annoying but it got tiring with dd - she was pure blonde and baldy looking tattie until 3 years old and whilst most of her clothes were 'boys' styles - layered t shirts, cuffed bottoms, dungarees, joggy bottoms they were almost all baby pink until she was 3 hmm plus she had 2 or 3 pink strollers, pink dummies, pink coats, pink shoes, an obvious girls name etc so yes, tiring.

DS on the other hand everyone days he's ''right laddie looking'' but i think he looks really feminine confused i must have skewed pictures of my dc grin

IneedAyoniNickname Tue 25-Jun-13 11:16:02

Thankfully now that ds2 is 6 it doesn't happen,.although I often get told its a shame he's a boy as he'd have been such a beautiful girl confused

It was generally the responses to being told he was a boy that annoyed me more than the assumption they were girls iyswim

BabsAndTheRu Tue 25-Jun-13 11:16:18

For most of my early childhood my mum always got our hair cut short and I often wore my brothers hand me downs. Throughout this time everybody thought I was a boy and I hated it. I used to cry at night wishing I had long hair etc like my friends. When it was time for me to be able to choose how my hair was I wouldn't let anybody cut it. Still have long blonde wavy hair 30 yrs later. I remember my older brother used to get angry at people calling me son all the time and even at a young age telling him that its not there fault as I did look like a boy. Just thought I'd give you a kids perspective on it and I can remember it like it was yesterday. Hated it.

SupermansBigRedPants Tue 25-Jun-13 11:16:56

yoni i used to take dd and dnephew to the shops aged 4 and 2 with their 'babies' in their buggies the amount of people who commented about dnephew 'borrowing' the baby drove me potty, he must've got peed off too as he started saying ''hiya eee's myyy baby'' to random people on our walks grin

SerotoninCanEatTomorrow Tue 25-Jun-13 11:19:38

It upsets me because I have a running disagreement with my DP about cutting the boys hair - DP likes it long but DS has a very feminine face and it riles me up because its always me that ends up having to correct people!


<disclaimer - I want to cut his hair cos he's a hot boy and always sweaty, not because he looks like a girl!>

ballroomblitz Tue 25-Jun-13 11:28:28

Dd is mistaken for a boy all the time. Even today when she had on pink shoes and t-shirt and pink through her cardi. I think it's because I put jeans on her most of the time. I don't care but it really winds her dad up so he's forever putting her in silly, fussy dresses that cause her to fall flat on her face when she's trying to crawl confused

beginnings Tue 25-Jun-13 11:31:49

I only get irritated because people seem now to be so caught up in the pink/blue thing. Like sparkle my DD looks lovely in blue as she has really blue eyes and is very fair. I also love blue so she has quite a few blue things. I also (shock horror) bought a pram that has a blue hood before she was born (had no idea what she was going to be).

Last year when she was 14 weeks, I was carrying her in her sling. She was wearing a bluey/lilacy FLOWERY sunhat and a pale blue cardigan and someone asked me how old "he" was. Who puts their boy in a flowery sunhat!! Seriously! But because she was in a pale blue cardi, she had to be a boy!

DMIL, bless her, would love to buy her all the fluffy pink dresses but knows better grin. In fairness, in that case, it's not the pink I object to - fluff is SO practical on a bum shuffling messy eater of a 13mo old hmm.

Thisisaeuphemism Tue 25-Jun-13 11:34:14

I agree, who could care less.

I was about eleven before adults stopped calling me "Sonny".

OctopusPete8 Tue 25-Jun-13 11:35:01

My DS often got mistaken for a girl, has a gorgeous 'pretty' face and had a head full of golden ringlets.
It wasn't until just before nursery I cut his hair to stop any confusion, the kids thought he was a girl too, It wouldn't have been fair on him.

froggiebabies Tue 25-Jun-13 11:35:30

It didn't bother me but we did have a strange one in a shoe shop. I was there with my 2 dds. The younger one was 3. There was a mother and grandmother there with a girl the same age.

My dd and theirs were dressed quite similarly and had the same blonde curls. The grandmother came over and asked me what age my son was hmm. She was definitely referring to dd2 as dd1 was wearing a dress and had her hair in pigtails.

It was so odd because my dd looked a lot like her granddaughter and is not boyish looking at all. Weird lady.

EntWife Tue 25-Jun-13 11:42:00

when i was a young child i was often mistaken for a boy because my mum insisted on me having a god awful cousin oliver pudding bowl haircut. It really upset me.

Both my DD's have been bald babies and were often mistaken for boys. It did annoy me but not overly so. i told myself to get a grip. i knew it was my issue but i did gently correct whoever made the mistake.

Misfit13 Tue 25-Jun-13 11:46:34

It doesn't bother me as much as it seems to bother people if I correct them, so I generally don't. It doesn't surprise me, either, as ds is frequently pushing/ wearing his baby and doesn't have the locally favoured buzz cut. It's usually people on buses/in shops, and then they apologise for calling him pretty. It's not an insult-he just is! I do wonder, tho, if I'd be more offended if it was the other way around, sort of if the implication was that I had a not pretty daughter - I really hope I'm not that shallow! An old biddy in a cafe repeatedly referred to him as she, but I didn't say anything. She then asked me what her name was and I just said 'Johnny'. She looked horrified and asked me what on earth had possessed me to call her that! 12 months on and she still thinks I named my baby daughter Johnny; oh well, I haven't the heart to tell her now!

aldiwhore Tue 25-Jun-13 11:51:35

Apparently I was RUDE to ask "what is it?" when meeting a baby for the first time. I should have KNOWN this wrinkly little baby was a girl because she had a pink and lemon blanket.

I'd rather ask than get it wrong, and if I get it wrong I don't think it's a crime.

My sons' were often mistaken for girls, up until about school age, as they had their hair long and wore clothes that didn't say "I am THIS gender"... tbh, I didn't feel offended in the slightest apart from one woman who said I was going to make my boys sissies (one step away from catching gayness I think?).

As an aside, how does one say "What is it?" without turning the baby into a 'thing'.

georgettemagritte Tue 25-Jun-13 12:23:17

I always think it's quite funny really, DD has a cute round face and not much hair so she looks androgynous (as almost all babies do tbh). I don't mind some pinks, but hate hate hate that nasty sickly flat sugar-pink most baby girl clothes are, DD would look silly in frills, and I think it's a huge shame that when children could wear all the lovely bright fun colours they want that they should be decked out in pink or blue (equally hate most baby boy clothes - flat pale blue or muddy colours with trucks on, ugh). DD has sleepsuits in lots of nice bright reds and blues etc., dinosaurs, stripes, the lot, she looks cute as anything in them and who cares whether someone thinks she's a boy!
I was in a cafe recently and an elderly woman came up and said "Oh you can really tell he's a little man, can't you?"I said cheerfully, "Actually, she's a girl", and the woman was so horrified and apologetic, it was like she'd shot DD by accident or something, the poor woman was so upset....

stopgap Tue 25-Jun-13 12:28:08

Toddler DS doesn't have long hair, it's sort of in-between, but he's always mistaken for a girl. Less so now that he's a bit older, but if he wears any colour other than blue, 99% guaranteed multiple people will call him a "beautiful girl" that day. It doesn't bother me in the slightest.

beginnings Tue 25-Jun-13 14:21:23

aldiwhore, I get around that by asking "WHO is this?" rather than what. Unless it's very unusual, that usually gets me around that problem!! But agreed on the colours - nonsense.

ilovexmastime Tue 25-Jun-13 15:10:33

DS1 got mistaken for a girl loads, even when wearing obvious boys clothes. DS2 never did. DS1 was a very good looking baby (though I say so myself! ) whereas DS2 was.... not so grin.
I can only conclude that some people think that only girls can be beautiful babies.

Anyway, I have no idea why some people care, I never did.

minouminou Tue 25-Jun-13 15:24:16

DS is a real confuser, and, now he's approaching seven, he has started to use it to his advantage. He's got long hair, and likes to wear a dress at home, but has also spent most of the last week drawing pictures of Comet Shoemaker-Levy crashing into Jupiter, fiddling with his dinkle and telling us that various older girls are his "greatest loves" (his words).

We don't care when he gets mistaken for a girl, he doesn't care either. He is what he is. He's been like this since toddlerhood, and while we've had a few years of people saying "He'll grow out of it, don't worry...." (we weren't worrying anyway), it now seems that this is becoming a permanent fixture in his lifestyle, a la Eddie Izzard. We haven't encouraged it, we just haven't discouraged it.

Some people can't cope with the uncertainty, or have fixed ideas about gender roles and gender values, more importantly. Most people, however, really couldn't give a freeze-dried rat's bum.....

Orangebirdonatable Tue 25-Jun-13 15:43:27

I live in a place that for cultural reaons, girls get their ears pierced when they are born. Dd does not. I am constantly asked if she is a boy. Even when she is wearing a pink dress.
It makes me laugh that people think i would be so bave / weird to dress my son as girl grin

Orangebirdonatable Tue 25-Jun-13 15:43:39


Orangebirdonatable Tue 25-Jun-13 15:45:35

What s wrong with me? I will try again!

That I would be so brave / weird to dress my son as a girly girl.

WhiteShakette Tue 25-Jun-13 16:49:06

I was just thinking about this today, because my 15 month old son has been mistaken for a girl a few times in the last few days, for the first time in his life. DH pointed out that the person speaking in all cases has been a man of 65 + (we are on holiday somewhere with a lot of older day trippers), who, if the mistake emerged in subsequent conversation, was terribly, terribly embarrassed, as if he had made some terrible faux pas, though it doesn't bother us one jot, and we weren't 'correcting' him.

I think it must have something to do with older men's ideas about masculinity and the way parents present a child...? My son just had a haircut, but has a blonde mop that flicks up at the back, and as his father and I loathe navy and sludge-coloured clothes with lorries, superheroes or dinosaurs for a child of his age, he wears a lot of bright red, yellow, green, orange, blue garments, with Crocs and jeans or shorts. Presumably the brightness and the fact his hair isn't cut like a Marine says 'not a boy' to a certain kind of older man...?

I don't understand why the mistake upsets some parents badly, though.

HollyBerryBush Tue 25-Jun-13 17:27:53

it's a baby, it's androgynous, it's supposed to be androgynous

If it were ment to be androgenous a penis or a vagina would arrive at puberty. A baby has gender. Whether you choose to go up the pink, blue or mint green route is entirely parental choice. A pretty boy is always accepted, however the same cannot be said for girls who do not conform to society accepted standards of beauty.

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