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in response to, is the balloon for a little boy or girl?

(138 Posts)
Fuckitfay Sat 17-Oct-15 17:53:46

DD3's second birthday. Picked up a helium balloon, mainly blue, with purple and a teddy on it and the number two. There was also an entirely pink version. As I paid for it the shop assistant asked if it was for a little boy or girl. When I said girl, she said I think you've got the wrong one, the girl ones are here. My response was meant to come out more light hearted, should have said something along the lines of, oh I think she'll be fine with the colour thanks, instead I rolled my eyes, sighed and said, sorry I don't really buy into the pink/blue gender stereotyping thing! Led to an awkward exchange where the shop assistant sort of snorted in surprise and then said she was just doing her job.... And she supposed I wanted a blue ribbon? I said it's ok, any colour ribbon is fine, I wasn't trying to make a point but I'm not keen on everything having to be pink for girls. I then realised the assistant's hair was.... Bright pink! Oops.
I was just very surprised I think by her comment. The balloon is very sweet and my daughter is TWO.

YouTheCat Sat 17-Oct-15 17:56:40

It's not her job to comment on your choices, cheeky cow.

What if you'd got the pink one for a boy? She'd have gone into meltdown.

Lj8893 Sat 17-Oct-15 17:57:18

I would have said a similar thing if I were you.

We have been to subway a couple of times and the kids meals come in a little lunchbag. Every time they ask if it's for a boy or girl, and when I say "I don't mind" I get an odd look!

Narp Sat 17-Oct-15 17:58:03

Does she think you are stupid and accidentally chose a colour you don't actually like? Silly woman

EatDessertFirst Sat 17-Oct-15 17:59:20

I'm miffed at how het up people get over the 'gender stereotyping' stuff. I only ever see it on MN. Everyone I know is pretty happy to let their kids be who they want and I've never had any issues in shops.

Its just a balloon! She had no real reason to comment and you had no reason to get all uppitty.

Fuckitfay Sat 17-Oct-15 18:00:15

I'm sensitive to this at the moment because DD2 (5.5) is adamant she wants to be a boy - actually she just wants to be a superhero and is into mechanical things and doesn't want to worry about looking pretty. She wouldn't be questioning what sex she was if it wasn't for all the gender stereotypes she has been exposed to - she thinks girls can't like the things she likes

PrincessHairyMclary Sat 17-Oct-15 18:01:03

Oooh wait until you go to Clark's and try and buy sensible, warm school shoes and the only ones are in the 'boys' section

nooka Sat 17-Oct-15 18:01:22

I don't think that she was 'just doing her job' you'd chosen the balloon you liked, why is it for her to challenge that? Fine if she'd said did you see the other colours that we have, or even (less so) did you see that we have a pink one too, but she effectively told you that your choice was wrong. That's not doing her job is it, after all 'the customer is always right' grin

It would have really pissed me off too.

Fuckitfay Sat 17-Oct-15 18:05:01

princesshairy I actually bought "boy" shoes for DD3 in clarks just yesterday - blue trainers - because all the girl shoes left in the sale looked like they'd get ruined in 2 mins flat and useless for muddy puddles or running about kicking balls. Again not trying to make a point but as I told the shop assistant they just looked far more practical. The assistant fussed over the fit as boy toddler feet grow differently apparently?!

Andrewofgg Sat 17-Oct-15 18:05:24

Is it for a little boy or a little girl?

Yes. This one please! with a nice smile.

EatDessertFirst Sat 17-Oct-15 18:06:13

she thinks girls can't like the things she likes

I don't get this I'm afraid. My DD is 7 likes mechanical stuff, superheroes and doesn't particularly care about her looks. She has no angst about it as we don't make a point of saying 'well superheroes are for boys'.

Could your DD be picking up on your sensitivity about gender stereotyping?

The whole concept seems like a massive non-issue. DC like what they like, who cares what colour it is?

Fuckitfay Sat 17-Oct-15 18:10:54

I'm totally cool about DD2 liking whatever she wants to like but she keeps asking when she is going to be a boy and thinks she is different to "normal" girls. That makes me sad because if you ask her why she wants to be a boy it's because she says she likes doing boy things and boys are cooler. It's got worse since she started school and is in a class of seemingly very girly girls. I am trying to give the message that she can do anything she wants to, like anything she wants and that girls can do anything they want to - it's ok for girls to like superheroes.
DD1 is 8 and still loves dressing as a princess and always wears skirts so I haven't exactly been pushing my kids into anti gender stereotypes

Oysterbabe Sat 17-Oct-15 18:14:11

Stuff like this boils my piss. Looking for some baby grows yesterday and saw these. See how most of the girls ones are appearance-based. Because obliviously we must let our girls know how important being beautiful is from the second they're born. The boys get the funky designs.

pigsDOfly Sat 17-Oct-15 18:15:20

Why at the age of 5 does your DD think girls can't like the things she likes Fuckitfay if she clearly does like them.

Unless she's constantly being told her liking them is wrong how would she know. And who is telling her such rubbish.

I've never noticed it in RL either EatDessert. Never dressed my DDs in pink or had all this, little girls can't play with mechanical things, when they were growing up and the youngest is 28.

At that age - 5yo - one of my DDs was firmly of the opinion that she was going to grow up to be a man, absolutely convinced of it. Not because she particularly wanted to be a man she just thought that was the way it went.

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Sat 17-Oct-15 18:15:27


It really gets on my tits.

Although I have seen the opposite in a shop. A woman wanted to know if a baby grow was for a boy or a girl. The two sales assistants just could not compute her question because... it doesn't matter! They were genuinely baffled.

SmallLegsOrSmallEggs Sat 17-Oct-15 18:16:51

My dd2 also wants to be a boy but has been crying lately becauae the boys at her soccer skills class (who never used to notice she was a girl) have started picking on her and saying she is rubbish because she is a girl (they don't want a girl to score agaibst them).

She prettyuch only wears 'boys' shoes and 'boys' clothes. In reality except for underwear and swimsuits it makes no odds!

I'd have said "it doesn't look to me like you need a penis to own either of those balloons" smile sweetly.

Fuckitfay Sat 17-Oct-15 18:17:37

pigsDOfly sadly I think such rubbish is prevalent all around us as demonstrated by the pink/blue discussion re the balloon and when we go to M and S and the toys she likes are in a section headed BOYS TOYS and her sister shrieks you can't have that it's for booooooys! And all the girls at school make a big thing out of her being a tomboy. Trust me, it's not from me.

bodenbiscuit Sat 17-Oct-15 18:18:31

YANBU good for you OP

minime8 Sat 17-Oct-15 18:19:02

I'd have replied (and have in the past) 'it's for a two year old! They'll love it.' I just buy what I think whatever kid I'm buying for will like best smile

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Sat 17-Oct-15 18:19:08

I'm not much older than your daughter pigs (about 4 years or so) and I don't remember there being anything like the gender stereotyping bollocks there is now.

I have a ds and a dd and trying to just buy toys, clothes or shoes without it being "for a boy" (= usually brown and/or has wheels) or for a girl (= pink and/or purple).

Even bloody Lego is gendered now. When I was a kid you bought kits or primary coloured stuff and that was it.

minime8 Sat 17-Oct-15 18:19:46

Oops so meant to say YAdefinitelyNBU!

DifferentCats Sat 17-Oct-15 18:20:12

Before I had a child, I was also irritated by people who cared either way about gender stereotyping. But now, having had a boy who loves pink and other 'girls' toys (as well as typical 'boys' things), gender stereotyping really boils my piss.

So many people feel the need to reassure me that DS will grow out of his liking for pink. Why should he grow out of it? It's just a flipping colour. He can like what he likes.

Pipbin Sat 17-Oct-15 18:21:17

When I was pg (sadly lost at 13 weeks) we decided that we didn't want to know the sex as neither of us could see that it would make a scrap of difference.
So may people said 'but how will you know what stuff to buy or what colour to paint the nursery?'

My friend went into Clarks and her little girl chose boys shoes and the sales assistant told her she couldn't have the, as they were boys shoes!

JoeMommuh Sat 17-Oct-15 18:21:17

Well done op

The more people call out sexism, racism and other crap the less people will say such shit

Narp Sat 17-Oct-15 18:22:46

From when they can talk, other children will tell your child what they've heard from their parents/grandparents. So I can well believe that OPs daughter has had some helpful child point out to them what girls and boys like.

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