Gender reinforcement at the playground

This is an actual conversation I overheard at the playground.

Two four year olds, a boy and girl, sit on a bench at the park, Brooklyn.

Boy
Who wants to play avengers?

Girl
I do.

Boy
You can be miss underwear.

Girl
I don’t wanna be miss underwear.

Boy
That’s the only girl avenger. Unless you wanna be the fat one, you don’t wanna be the fat one, do you?

Girl
No.

Boy
You can be the girl stuck in the tower.

Girl
I wanna be superman.

Boy
You can’t be superman, I just remembered there’s another girl stuck in the tower.

Girl
I wanna be superman.

Boy
I’m gonna be iron man. I’ll rescue you in the tower.

After a bit she gets tired of waiting to be rescued in the tower, so she finds some other kids to play with, boys who are maybe 5. She walks over to them.

Girl
Can I play too?

New Boy
You can’t play because we’re playing fighting and boys can’t hit girls.

Girl
But I want to play hide and seek.

New Boy
You could hide from the bad fighter and I could rescue you.

And that, my friends, is gender reinforcement at the playground. Where does this shit come from? It sucks.

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4 thoughts on “Gender reinforcement at the playground

  1. Rohi

    It comes from the parents and society 😦 I tell M+J they can be anything they want to be — M pretends to be boy characters all the time and J likes being the girl characters….and they switch it up all the time….I like it that way and so do they.

    Reply

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