To the man who stopped me and my twins in the street yesterday.
My children were running towards our parked car after being allowed to choose a treat from the shop yesterday. As they stopped at our car only a few steps infront of me, you approached them.
You panicked them as you started to speak to them and I know you meant no harm.
But their body language alone told me they were a little frightened.
You said to them “Do you have any brothers?” And I answered no for them, I politely said they had an older sister. Then he continued, “You girls are trouble, I could see that by the way you ran to the car!”
Again, I know you were trying to be friendly but you didn’t look properly, because if you had you would have realised that my twins were a girl and a boy and not two girls.
You looked at my son and you saw his beautiful long curly hair and you looked in his hand and you saw a make up palette. The make up palette he had chosen from the shop as he wanted the same as his sister had been given last month.
If you had looked closer, you’d have seen that actually his features were quite masculine. You’d have noticed that his clothes were very different to what his sister was wearing and that his shoes were blue and his sister’s were pink.
These are just a few signs that give away he is a boy, I think he actually looks very much like a boy too. But like ALOT of people you didn’t look properly and called my 3 and a half year old son a girl. He heard this and shouldn’t have had to.
You didn’t stop there. You then asked them where their dad was. Well he clearly wasn’t with me as it was obvious we were alone.
You weren’t to know that their dad was dead. I totally get that. But it still annoyed me.
When the children didn’t answer you, you carried on. You told them that “Daddy must need a medal for having a household of girls to contend with, he’s over run isn’t he?”
Well, actually he isn’t over run, he’s 6 feet under. And it isn’t him that needs a medal, it’s me.. for various reasons, like emptying the bins on a daily fucking basis. But you weren’t to know.
I know you didn’t know this, how could you? But it annoyed me. And then I felt bad for being annoyed at you.
It annoyed me that you called my son a girl.
You were being friendly, I know.
My son chooses to have long hair and he chooses to sometimes paint his nails, he chose, that day, a toy make up palette, because that’s what he wanted and I allow him to make his own choices.
He also loves to play with his trains, his football and his knights castle and is partial to abit of mud and water play. He likes to race around a softplay and ride dangerously fast down a hill on his scooter and he also like to dry my hair with his sister’s pretend hairdryer and brush my hair and wear his sister’s flashing purple shoes when she lets him.
It doesn’t make him any less of a boy.
Some would say he needs to toughen up, or it’s because he is the only boy in the house. I don’t think so.
He lets his sister pretty much walk all over him yet he almost always answers her politely. And that’s because he has inherited his daddy’s gentlemanly ways.
You meant no harm and were just being friendly, I know this. And that’s why I politely carried on the conversation whilst holding the twins and asked them to say goodbye to you as you left us.
They didn’t question the strange conversation for which I’m glad. But it left me with a lot of thoughts and it’s bugged me all day today.
Rocco’s friends know he is a boy and actually never has any child mistaken him for a girl. Only adults have done this.
Interesting, isn’t it? How society expects you to look or act a certain way depending on what gender you are.
So, I guess what I’m asking, is next time you talk to a stranger in the street, make sure you look properly! That’s all. As my son doesn’t need to hear over and over again by strange adults that he is a girl.
It’s beginning to grate on me.
Look properly. He’s a boy, thank you. 😊