One Can Never Have Enough Tutus

Johannesburg-20130913-00067I’m one of those mothers that avoided buying pink clothes from Day 1. I didn’t care if people called her a boy and I definitely didn’t stick one of those weird headband/clips on her bald little head to indicate gender.

I’ve always tried to steer away from the stereotypes but I’m realising now that I’ve been fighting a losing battle. You just can’t fight biology.

Our tough little tomboy has now started choosing her own clothes and the results are…interesting to say the least. Every morning these are the types of conversations I have:

“Darling, how about wearing these new jeans with your Dora t-shirt and your blue tracksuit top?”

“No, these ones (jeans) are for boys! Oliver has one. Don’t want jersey, need to see Dora”.

“But it’s cold, you need a jersey and you need to wear long pants”.

“Want dress. Pink dress. And ballet shoes. And purple necklace”.

So we come to some sort of compromise where she mostly wears what she wants and I throw a cardigan round her shoulders as she leaves the house (but NOT buttoned up otherwise you wouldn’t be able to see Dora).

“What a little brat” I hear many of you muttering under your own breath. And I used to think the same. Parents are supposed to be in charge, so children should wear what they tell them to. And while I agree with this sentiment I also don’t want to add a 20 minute debate on clothing to my morning routine every day. But most of all I want my daughter to be happy. So if wearing a tutu with striped leggings, polka dot socks and silver shoes, all topped off with pink star antlers is her outfit of choice, then so be it.

This is obviously a stage little girls go through. The clothes obsessions continues when she gets to school. Rachel will arrive and hug her good friend Hannah. They will then have a five minute standoff where they check out each other’s clothes and discuss them:

Rachel: look at my dress!

Hannah: look at my sparkly cardigan!

Rachel: look at my pink clip!

Hannah: who’s that on your t-shirt?

After the fashion assessment is over, they take each other’s hands and wander off to play with dolls.

At least I know I’m not alone. Twitter Mums with daughters the same age are all going through a similar thing. Which explains why the shops are packed with clothes in every shade of pink imaginable and festooned with images of Barbie and Dora and various Disney princesses. I swore blindly once upon a time that my daughter would never dress like that, but look at me now.

Which brings me to my tutu buying problem. I just can’t stop. Every time I see one I want to take it home. This is partly because they last about five minutes in our house as they snag on surfaces and get covered in dust or mud. And partly because they’re just so pretty. Adults don’t wear enough tutus (in my opinion), which is why I donned a purple and black one the other night. But that’s a story for another blog post entirely…

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6 thoughts on “One Can Never Have Enough Tutus

  1. Belinda, don’t beat yourself up. All children Rachel’s age, boys and girls want to choose their clothes, it is part of them becoming independent, thinking little people, and I think if parents refuse to let them choose I think it stifles their confidence. So what if your child walks around in purple and blue and orange with their shorts over their jeans and their brothers/sisters shoes that are too big for them, but they prefer to their own. In a year or two their fashion sense will return, and they will be very happy to dress “normally” again and it will be a wonderful stage in their lives that will be gone forever.

  2. I laughed at your conversation as it is an exact replica of the ones in my house. I mean word-for-word replica. And I am in the Cape, so you can imagine the battle to get her to wear a jersey (never mind her 6 pairs of unworn jeans in her cupboard) whilst trying to stave off pneumonia. However, we do have an obscene number of well-worn, snagged, torn, mud-stained, fraying tutus. I adore them. I am so enjoying your blog.

  3. My grandchildren have ALL been through this stage and the 4 year old is at this minute at odds with her very patient (sometimes not) Mom. You will have some more strange but sweet stages to go through yet. Enjoy!!

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