Are we guilty of even now encouraging gender stereotype behaviour, our response towards children? Perhaps we do let our guard down once in a while but there are mums and parents who are consciously trying to break these stereotype habits, observations and feelings in children.
Here’s a mum Fizza Zaidi who is an avid reader and an emerging writer. She says she loves road trips and baking. Most importantly she proudly flaunt her badge of a mother.
Here’s what she has got to share on allowing her boy to cry.
Boys do cry and it’s okay…!!
The sound caught my attention and I opened the door of his room. He was holding his favourite red toy car which was broken now. It was his most precious possession.
Tears were rolling down his cheeks. Upon looking at me, he at once tried to hide them. He didn’t want to show his vulnerability, weakness and fragility.
The fact is, 6-years old now, are in awe of Batman and Ben-10, who never lose or get hurt. Kids copy these characters and act like grown-ups. They don’t want to spoil their cool dude and “big-boy” image by crying or acting childish.
“It’s OKAY to cry.” I said, as we sat smooshed in his bed, he looked at me and his eyes meet.
“Boys are also human beings. They are made of flesh and bones. They can get hurt too”.
That night, before he nodded off to sleep, we finished chatting about expressing our feelings. I reflected on the cultural norm we have created around emotions and men. We tell our boys to be “brave”, to be “strong” and not to cry. Little by little we raise them up to conceal their emotions.
Hiding our emotions and feelings is NOT healthy. Let the tears fall down sometimes. It doesn’t make you weak. Only, we all know that it does the opposite. When you allow yourself to cry and let someone console you through the heartache, it means that you’re strong enough to let someone see the real you. That’s when the real love seeps in.
I know this sounds weird but let your kids cry. It teaches them resilience. It’s not that the toy car is irreplaceable nor it’s a huge matter. While we can’t control the events in our children’s lives, we can help to equip them with tools to help them manage when the time comes.
I want him to know that it’s okay to be sad, to be heartbroken, to be angry or to be confused.
All these feelings are OKAY.
And #Boys do cry. It’s NOT something to be ashamed of.
I don’t want my son to grow up swallowing his tears. Pretending that emotions don’t exist is not right. Masking your feelings is something I never should have been proud of. The reality is that emotions need to be expressed, they don’t just evaporate.
( Fizza with her son).
I hope that as my boy grow up, he will understand that feeling and expressing grief, fear and sadness are just as valid and valuable for boys as for girls.”
(Featured image in the blog belongs to the author and is subject to copyright. Lead image is from Internet from freely available source.)
If you want to write a blog or share your story with us or collaborate with us for a project email at firstname.lastname@example.org