While there are no rules or guidelines for perfect parenting, everyone’s approach towards their kids is unique.
If you choose to go ahead with gender-neutral parenting, you need to understand what it is and what are the pros and cons before adopting such a parenting style.
What is Gender Neutral Parenting?
Gender-neutral parenting is the way of letting your child explore their gender without restriction from society or with the gender they were born.
In simple words, Gender-neutral Parenting is giving freedom to children to make their own choices. It’s about encouraging a child to discover their own identity by eliminating gender stereotypes.
As most of them mistake gender-neutral parenting with gender-neutral children, they are not the same. A gender-neutral approach is a parent’s valiant effort not to classify a child solely based on his/her biological sex at birth.
Why is Gender-Neutral Parenting Important?
Being born with male or female body parts does not predict one’s qualities, abilities, or preferences.
Even if you are the one who is against gender discrimination and who wants to raise your kids without gender bias, you might be unknowingly differentiating them based on their gender.
For instance, how do you feel if someone gifts a Disney princess on your son’s birthday?
What type and color of dress would you prefer to buy for your daughter on her birthday? Most probably, your choice would be a pink-colored skirt or a gown with flowers or butterflies. And if it’s a boy, you would buy a shirt and jeans or a kurta.
“We Are What We Teach – We Teach What We Are”
We live in a society where we believe that gender norms are biologically based and taught about the role of gender and their responsibilities. We live in a system where everything is gender-stereotyped. For example, while toys like dolls, princess costumes, and kitchen sets emphasize domestic care and beauty, whereas cars, action figures, and building sets emphasize spatial reasoning and aggression.
We teach our children what we are taught from our parents and elders and think that they are essential for our child’s wellbeing and happiness. So, we make our kids learn how a boy is supposed to look like and how a girl should behave.
Though the concept of gender-neutral parenting is in the nascent stage, given the prevalence of gender bias in our society, raising a child in a gender-neutral manner is much needed today.
Here are some Pros and Cons of Gender-Neutral Parenting.
Pros of Gender-Neutral Parenting
- The liberty of expression and freedom of choice make your kids more creative and enhances your kid’s self-esteem and courage.
- It enhances the ability of your kids to develop their interests and goals.
- Erasing gender labels can help your kids discover who they are and who they want to be.
- Your kid will feel free to express themselves.
- It allows your child to respect people equally without any gender discrimination.
- Your kids grow up with the ability to never have any gender bias or stereotype.
- Gender-neutral kids are likely to make efforts to challenge and achieve gender equality both in school and in society.
- Most importantly, your kid would love to be loved unconditionally and trusts you more.
Cons of Gender-Neutral Parenting
- Gender stereotyping, being one of the most prevalent issues today, makes it challenging for parents to confront any gender norms and stereotypes.
- Not everyone is in favor of Gender-neutral parenting. Your child may feel pressured as the community will try to push them back into their gender stereotype.
- Even minute differences in caregiving can have a significant impact on them.
- Children who don’t know about gender until they meet with other kids or attend school may feel confused about their gender identity that affects personal growth and development.
Welcome to the World of Gender-neutral Parenting!
Create the right environment for your kids from an early age as they learn more from our actions than words. Block the gender bias and allow your kids to explore and determine where they fall in their own time.
Let your kids live in a world where they are free to live without any gender bias and grow up with their own emotions and interests.