To send ds2 (YR in Sept) to school with a Peppa Pig backpack and pink lunchbox?

(54 Posts)
lecce Tue 27-Aug-13 13:22:36

I am getting increasingly worried about ds2 starting school next week. He is only just four and seems very young for his age, though in terms of skills he is doing fairly well and recognises sounds, letters and numbers. He is very shy, though settled in well at nursery (we moved earlier this year) and will be joined by some of his classmates. I work f/t and dh is a sahd and illness this year has meant we haven't done any playdates at all with people from our new area. However, we had a party for ds2 and most of those invited attended and he has been invited to a party next week.

Ds has an obsession with pink and all things sparkly and glittery. He adores Hello Kitty (though has never seen the show - I didn't know there was one until recently) he just likes the look of the the products. He wore a tutu to his party and has long, blond, curly hair.

He has a Peppa Pig backpack (though it actually has George on it in a rocket) and last week chose a shocking pink Sistema lunckbox, like ds1's geen one, to go in it. I feel so stupid for feeling like this but, having read through a thread on Chat earlier, I am worrying that this is going to make it difficult for him to fit in. Tbh, I have only been to the school a handful of times and dh doesn't notice this kind of stuff so it is hard for me to gauge whether it's the kind of school where this will matter.

He is very excited about starting school and, when we bought his 'big boy' black shoes last week he put them on with his lurid pink Hello Kitty socks and strutted around. I told him he wouldn't be able to wear the socks to school and he said, "What would people think?" which made me sad because it seemed like he felt I was saying other people won't like him because of the choices he makes - though I was actually thinking of the uniform.

Anyway, sorry to waffle. Should I be more actively steering him away from the pink and the glittery, as well as pre-school-type stuff, or not? An added complication is that backpack was a birthday gift from mil and dh (who I'm not getting on well with atm) will be furious if I suggest it's not suitable for school.

Crowler Tue 27-Aug-13 13:28:52

Certainly he'd have some problems with this at some point. That's just how life goes, kids are ruthless when it comes to this sort of thing.

I don't think he'd have a problem in reception.

How is your son's school arranged? How old are the oldest kids there - which year?

MorphandChas Tue 27-Aug-13 13:31:39

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lecce Tue 27-Aug-13 13:32:58

It's a very small school and goes right up to Y6. It seems very friendly and ds is often greeted by Y 5 and 6s around town as they play together and he, although nothing like his brother, is certainly not a streetwise 'old for his age' type of boy.

ProphetOfDoom Tue 27-Aug-13 13:33:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Crowler Tue 27-Aug-13 14:00:08

Reception kids are toddlers (I despair over how young they are when the start in this country, separate topic) - I can't imagine anyone giving him any grief.

They become a bit more aware of what their peers are thinking about them in year 2/3 in my experience.

mumofweeboys Tue 27-Aug-13 14:02:00

Both my boys love peppa 5 and 2, the George stuff is a good compromise. Mine will be taking Thomas or his bob bag for his pe kit as school provides book bags. I don't think anyone will say anything about pink lunchbox but the hello kitty socks may be a step too far.

LazyMonkeyButler Tue 27-Aug-13 14:04:10

The Peppa backpack with George in the rocket is more of a boys one isn't it?

I don't think it'll matter at such a young age though, not to the other children anyway. The only problem I can foresee is potentially other idiotic parents commenting about it.

TheOriginalSteamingNit Tue 27-Aug-13 14:04:42

Hmm, he should be allowed to like what he likes, and if you're cool with it, fine.

But I think it would be naive to think the other children won't say anything. Of course they're wrong to, of course we shouldn't pander to others' bigotry - but if you want the plain facts of the matter, four year olds are not too young to say 'heee hee that's a girls' lunchbox'. Truly they're not. And I think you have to be ready for that, and ds's reaction to it, if you do send him with that lunch box.

Tiredemma Tue 27-Aug-13 14:08:36

He sounds like my DS2 (who is now 10)- he refuses to 'conform to the norm' and is more of a girl than I could possibly have imagined (think obsessed with Disney Princess dolls etc).

I don't think it will be a huge issue in that age group to be honest- we did have a problem last year with some boys in DS's class being mean but he stood up to them and it seems to have died down.

He goes to Secondary school next september and I have been worried about it but the school he is going to is a 'performing arts' specialist school (which he is really into) and DS1 says that there are 'loads of boys like DS2'

Don't worry about it - he sounds quite an independent character - I'm sure he will be fine.

LookingForwardToVino Tue 27-Aug-13 14:11:20

Let him take it if he wants!

Dnephew loved Barbie and pink. He took his Barbie in his pink Barbie lunch box to school until he was 6.

He is 19 now and a girl magnet (think he uses it as one of his pulling stories haha)

everlong Tue 27-Aug-13 14:51:00

He's only just four. He's tiny. Honestly I would send him in with it if he's that bothered.

So what, it's just a colour. My ds was 7 on Sunday and quite typically boyish but he wanted a pink birthday cake. So he got one.

Don't let this take the shine off starting school.

smile

CockyFox Tue 27-Aug-13 14:54:03

I would let him take it but be prepared to replace it if he wants to.

Am watching this with interest but for the opposite reason. DD starts pre-school and likes Monsters Inc. and dinosaurs at the moment. She has a big, blue Sully bag, which she loves. Then I went to the pre-school for a visit and she was the only girl in jeans. EVERY other girl was in a dress. I know it's the parents rather than the kids but I'm worrying now that I'm making her the odd one out.

Tiredemma Tue 27-Aug-13 15:08:25

MrsTerry- you are not making her the odd one out! you are allowing her to find her own identity!

Ive lost track of the people who have commented about DS2, including grown men saying things like " I wouldnt let my son mince around like that"

I love that Ds2 is different- its part of his character.

I know Tiredemme I just want everyone to love and appreciate my PFB as much as I do. blush

GooseyLoosey Tue 27-Aug-13 15:14:18

I would not assume that they are too young for the others to notice. Ds started reception with a pink water bottle (his choice) and his peers remembered it for years. To be fair, as it turned out some of them would have picked on him anyway, but this just gave them one more reason.

I wouldn't change it if your ds loves it, but I would not be surprised if someone comments.

Dahlen Tue 27-Aug-13 15:15:14

In reception you probably won't have a problem unless you live in an area where traditional ideas of masculinity are particularly entrenched. By year 1 it will sadly be a different story. My DC (one of each) were complete gender stereotype reversals until they started school. By the end of year 1 they had conformed. I let them because I didn't want them to be bullied for my principles of equality, though I talked to them both about it. After a while DD found her own niche that is neither one nor the other. DS was much more conformist.

The idea that there are boys toys and girls toys makes me so sad. There should just be children and toys, and selection should be made on what's enjoyed, not social stereotypes or gifts from parents/friends/relatives who are too terrified to buy a pink iron for a boy or a blue scooter for a girl for fear of causing offence. Toys are more gendered now than at any time in the past 50 years.

Mrs TP - IME girls can like boys things with much greater ease than boys can like girls things, because boys things are 'cool'. A girl who aspires to be like a boy can be an honorary boy and accepted. A boy who likes girls things is much more likely to be labelled a sissy and bullied. It makes you realise who differently the genders are still viewed. sad

That's true, Dahlen and it makes me sad. It also makes me sad that I can't find things with the whole cast. So, you can find Toy Story stuff but try to find clothes with Woody, Buzz AND Jessie? Nope, because boys won't wear girls. But DD loves Buzz and Jessie and I think that's great. Can't find a bloody hoodie with them both on.

Arkady Tue 27-Aug-13 15:20:16

He may get flack about his hair at playtime and TAs may not support him over it. DS1 was bullied about his by 2 children, and school told us to get his hair cut so that it wouldn't happen again. (We haven't).

lljkk Tue 27-Aug-13 15:21:36

I agree fine in reception, there will be mad Bob The Builder & Thomas the TE fans there, too (of any gender).

Dahlen Tue 27-Aug-13 15:26:23

MrsTP I know this is completely missing the point, but have you thought about getting a Buzz/Jessie image and having it made into a transfer you can iron on to a plain hoodie? You can get this done online and it's not that expensive.

You're a genius, Dahlen. Sorry for the derail lecce, I'm going to have a very happy DD.

oscarwilde Tue 27-Aug-13 15:38:40

It should make it easier to find his stuff if nothing else.

He sounds blissfully enamoured with his new stuff and it will go one of two ways - he won't be remotely bothered if teased; or he'll be upset and go right off his new stuff.

It might help to have a few smart alec responses? Could your older DC help or be prepared to butt in?

Bully: "You are wearing girls clothes/colours?
DS2: "So why aren't you wearing it (with a big smile)?"

Bully: "Pink is for girls"
DS2: As above; or "Pink is just a colour".

This is a bit worthy
www.tolerance.org/activity/teasing-about-gendered-activities-traits-or-possessions

HugoDarling Tue 27-Aug-13 15:45:18

Bully: "You are wearing girls clothes/colours?
DS2: "So why aren't you wearing it (with a big smile)?"

hmm I wouldn't teach my DS this, I would just teach him to say- because I like it, and I am a boy, so it doesn't matter.

OP can you talk to anyone from the school? One of DS1's friend's mums might be more clued in to the atmosphere?

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