Socialization and Gender Roles Essay

Based on observation and personal experience, as early as initiation of pregnancy, most couples organize basic preparations for the coming of their new baby. These preparations include choosing of names whether for a boy or a girl, and going through an ultrasound scan to confirm the baby’s gender. As soon as couples find out their baby’s gender, they start analyzing a theme for the baby’s room, coordinating a baby shower, and buying clothes and toys among others. In my family, couples who expect a baby boy tend to be more liberal during preparation process.

This is due to a common notion that boys or men are robust and vigorous; therefore, do not have to be given special attention as compared to a common notion pertaining to girls or women as fragile and sensitive. During preparations such as preparing a theme for a baby room and buying clothes and toys, couples who expect a baby boy are more easy-going and liberal. Most common themes and designs that are chosen include robots, cars, bears, sports characters, etc. As one can notice, these themes and designs are generally associated with boys or men.

For girls, couples tend to be more mindful and thorough in choosing themes and designs, which indicate frailty such as flowers, angels, baby dolls, etc. Even the colors are distinguished having blue for boys and pink for girls. During the birth of a child, hospital treatment and procedures are usually similar for boys and girls in my family. However, in some cases, parents request for special practices like ear-piercing for girls and circumcision for boys prior to hospital release. In terms of the hospital room, blue balloons are usually set for baby boys while pink balloons and flowers are set for baby girls.

It is also noticeable that when a baby girl is brought to the mother’s hospital room, the mother usually does not want the baby taken away from her. Mothers are especially to girls Socialization 3 while fathers are especially to boys. As a child is brought out of the hospital, my family usually prepares a little celebration in our home. Banners and balloons are set inside the house. Visitors including relatives and friends take notice of the face of the new baby. If the baby is a boy, visitors tend to associate him to the father and if it is a girl, they tend to associate her to the mother.

Visitors are usually excited as they mingle around the baby. Again, if it is a baby boy, visitors usually compare the traits and expressions of the child to the father. Same goes if it is a baby girl, visitors compare the child to the mother. During the early years of a child, specific toys, books, methods of playing, and who they are playing with are introduced to the child. A boy is usually provided with toys and activities that are “manly” such as balls, cars, and robots. Even the video games indicate masculinity such as those that pertain to sports, street fights, and car racing among others.

On the other hand, a girl is provided with toys and activities that are “ladylike” such as stuffed toys, dolls, and kitchen toy sets. In terms of video games, a girl is usually allowed to play with those that include dressing up a model, home designing, and the likes. Books and movies that are allowed to be watched by boys and girls also differ. Boys are inclined to action and sci-fi books and movies while girls are inclined with fantasy and fairy tales. As to who they are playing, boys are generally allowed to play with boys to avoid preference to homosexuality.

Fathers take charge as they allow their boys to play basketball or football with other boys. Mothers, on the other hand, take charge as they allow their girls to play dolls or cooking toy sets with other girls. On occasions such as Christmas, New Year, and Halloween, boys and girls differ in costumes and the presents they receive. In my own family, boys wear costumes such as Socialization 4 Superman, Batman, Spiderman, etc. while girls wear costumes such as fairies, angels, Barbie, etc. These costumes all indicate gender identity where boys appear heroic and tough and girls appear fragile and gentle.

The gifts and presents boys and girls receive also differ. Boys receive toy cars, heroic figurines, baseball bats, etc. while girls receive Barbie dolls, kitchen toy sets, playhouses, etc. The self-approach of an individual as being a male or female is generally developed through parental example, language, and social reinforcement. In most cases, parents teach their children sex-appropriate behavior from an early age. Such behavior is reinforced as a child gets older and enters into a wider social environment.

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