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Parenting Children (6-12) Community
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Avatar universal

Wife bought my son an American Girl Doll

My son who is 8 and an only child is surrounded by girls in our neighborhood. We try to hook him up with boy playdates when we can but it happens on rare occasions. He is involved in sports and Cub Scouts but has not made any good relationships  with the boys. My wife and I talked about how we could support his relationships with boys and try to schedule more playdates. However, with his birthday money my wife and he comes home with an American Girl Doll. I was very angry and upset with her and explained that this is not going to help make connections with boys. Im trying not to show my anger in front of my son but it is difficult. My wife thinks I have a problem.  I have no problems with him playing with girls but I dont think we should be  buying him dolls.  Any advice ?
6 Responses
Avatar universal
jh
13167 tn?1327197724
I'm sensing the core issue here is that you are afraid he is gay,  and if you consistently guide him toward boy behaviors and encourage forming friendships with boys,  that will keep him from being gay.  I may be way off-base here,  but I'm sensing that.  Sometimes it's easier to talk about a concern if you shave it down to the bare nugget of it,  rather than a concern about buying very expensive toys that are almost exclusively the property of the other gender.  

Is that it?  
13167 tn?1327197724
An aside,  there's a movement (among mothers,  you will see) of turning American Girl dolls into boys.  Because apparently there is a market for them,  and boys want them.  You might google it and see if your son is interested.  Of special interest is the article in the New York Times:

http://parenting.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/10/22/where-are-the-american-boy-dolls/
Avatar universal
I am sensing some toxic masculinity issues. Your son is not defined by the gender of the kids he plays with. Just remove all gender norms and expectations and let your son be who he is. I agree with your wife that your are in the wrong here.
Avatar universal
I don't see why he cannot play with a doll, or only girls. He may find other boys to play with eventually- or not - it shouldn't matter either way, as long it all happens naturally. Giving boys what are traditionally considered "girls' toys" such as pink stuff, kitchen toys etc. is totally ok, and don;t we give girls cars, guns and what are traditionally considered "boys  toys"? I think not labeling toys gender-wise may be the best course of action.
Avatar universal
I am a woman and I played with pirate ships and castles. He is a child. Don't be a homophobe and don't be mean to your wife and son.
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13167 tn?1327197724
Austin, TX
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