Guns But No Roses.

If you happen to read this column with any regularity, you might recall that just a few short months ago, I was lamenting the fact that my three year-old son’s favorite activity was to dress up like a princess, or, in the alternative, to dress up in his sister’s nightgowns – but only if they were twirly.  Now, it didn’t particularly bother me that he did this; after all, he has a big sister and he’s used to playing with five year-old girls, so it shouldn’t come as any big surprise that he was into dresses.  What bothered me, however, was the commentary from the male peanut gallery in our lives.  My husband, the husbands of my friends, grandfathers, uncles, the guys on Michael’s softball team – everyone seemed to raise an eyebrow at poor

Davis and his twirling.  It drove me crazy.  I mean, who cares if he’s wearing a blue velvet spaghetti strap number in every picture from his third birthday party?  And what’s the big deal if he likes to run around naked save for a pink feather boa?  He’s a boy, I told them all.  He’ll grow out of it.



Well, grow out of it he has.  Lately, the only things that

Davis cares about are swords, guns, and Power Rangers (pronounced Power Angers, in our house).  Overnight, my son went from being a sweet, gentle, Cinderella to a karate-chopping, swashbuckling, heat-packing ball of testosterone.  I don’t even know where it came from.  One day, he was giggling and playing mommy and baby with my daughter, and the next, he was doing this weird, break-dancing thing on the floor and yelling “hi-ya, ha, HI-YA!” while simultaneously shooting at bad guys.  It’s as if some boy fairy came to him in his sleep and whispered into his ear that hey, buddy, you’ve got a penis, and you need to make sure that everyone thinks it’s really, really big. 



Meanwhile, the only thing that

Davis wants for Hanukkah is a gun.  The kid is positively jonesing for something that shoots.  And while I may have caved on the American Girl doll (see last week’s post, if you don’t know what I’m talking about), I have a strict no-gun policy in my house.  (And for those of you with older boys who are laughing right now, okay, fine, I know I’m going to end up caving on that one too, but I feel like I need to stick to my, ahem, guns, until he’s at least five.)  So while I keep trying to gently redirect him to kinder, gentler, activities,

Davis is fashioning rifles out of whatever materials happen to be at hand.  Hey, look, this stick can be a gun!  Oooh, it’s a tin foil gun!  Here are some Legos, let’s build a gun!  And my all-time favorite, look mama, I ate this piece of bread into the shape of a gun!   Doot-doot-doot-dooot bang-bang-bang!  I killed you, mama, I killed you.




my 8 yr old nephew is still in the sweet, and mildly effeminate stage, and my brother is freaking out, meanwhile his 6 yr old son is one traumatic event away from homicidal mania, and that's the one he thinks is normal? Why is violence (even the pretend kind) more acceptable than a little sensitivity? 'Course I say this as the mother of an ungirly-girl and infant boy, so...


what wonderful timing. I *just* returned from a parent-teacher conference where we discussed my son telling his friends at school he was going to kill them (walk the plank! go to jail! bang bnag!). good times. I have not caved (yet) for the gun thing, but swords are a dominant part of my son's life right now. Thank you for posting this, as I was convinced i had a future serial killer on my hands!!


The boy fairy has also visited our house - to see our once quiet 4 yr old. At 4.5 we've had our first gun-related teacher conference (no gun play tolerated at our preschool), and I'm getting my first glimpse of "mom, you're not cool 'cause you won't let me do anything" attitude. Now that he has stopped karate chopping everything in site, I'm starting to see the humor in it.


The boy fairy has also visited my 20 month old; he has recently begun laughing (hysterically) at his own farts. Guns and swords can't be far behind...