17 answers

My Five Year Old Daughter Wants to Dress like a Boy

Hello!

My daughter wants to dress like a boy ALL the time. I can get her to dress like a girl once in awhile for church, parties, etc. At times she can become hysterical. She thinks she looks cool in her boy stuff and ugly in her girl stuff. I have spoken with a psychologist and it seemstha it is just a phase. I don't know if I should force her to wear clothes of my choice more often? Any comments are appreciated.

C.

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I want to thank everyone for there input. Iamtaking a bit of advice from all of you! I will keep you posted on my progress. Tahnk you again.

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I think you should just let her wear what she wants. I believe children should be able to express themselves and I think it is just a phase.

Hi, my daughter is seven now and likes to wear her younger brother's clothes. My in-laws buy her clothes from the boys dept now. She went through a phase a few years ago where she would wear dresses every day. She doesn't like girl clothes because they are too tight or too short, but there are a few girl things she will wear and we have certain occasions where we tell her to dress like a girl. I hope she just carries on like this when she is a teenager, so I know I won't have to worry about her wearing anything revealing. She also won't wear a two piece bathing suit or anything sleeveless. It's a battle I choose not to fight with her. Jen

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Hi C.,

I'm a 47 year old mom! My daughter is 9(almost 10) - was adopted from China at 20 months old and it has been somewhat of a battle getting her to dress like a girl.

She is allowed to wear jeans on Fridays - which gives her the opportunity to dress (what I refer to) like a boy... She too, will dress like a girl for church, parties, etc.

She did tell me just recently that she was going to dress more like a girly, girl. With my daughter, I suspect that a lot of her boyish dressing is do to the fact that she knows that boys are more valued (in China) than little girls.

It probably is a phase, but not all girls go through it. I wouldn't worry too much.

M.

P.S.

I have 6 children total. 3 adopted/3 biological. Our oldest is almost 27 (male)and our youngest is almost 6(male)! In between their is a 26 (female), a 24 year old (female - who gave us our firt grandchild- 6 months) and a 22 year old (male).

No! Let her find out for her self. She will figure it out as time gos by..
Faye S.

Well, what can I say to you. I was one of those litle tomboys too. I remember dreaming that one day I would grow up to be a boy. I played with boys and couldnt play sports with the girls because I was too rough. I was the best little boxer you ever laid your eyes on. Not to mention at the age of 15 I was clocked throwing a baseball at 75 miles an hour. At 16 I fell in love with a boy named Rob. Guess what we married and have a family now. I even wore a wedding gown when we got married. I am ultra feminine. Once your daughter realizes that she will not become a boy no matter what. She will get in touch with her feminine side. Put aside of your fears. But do insist that she dress like a lady on certain occasions. Maybe try to let her pick out her own outfit on those occassions, as long as they are lady-like. Good luck

I think you should just let her wear what she wants. I believe children should be able to express themselves and I think it is just a phase.

Hi C.,

Speaking as a former tomboy, I think letting her dress as a boy is fine, as hard as it may seem. My poor mom let me do as I pleased during this phase, I even had a short haircut. I played sports and wanted to do what the boys did. I was the only girl in the minor league baseball team and the 1st girl ever (in the city I lived) to make it on the All-Stars. On special occasions I had to dress up like a girl but for the most part, I looked like a boy. By the time I was 9 or 10 though, I wanted to be a girl again. Wear make-up, dress in nice clothes, etc. Most girls grow out of this phase :) At one time, I was even embarrassed of my tomboy pics but I out grew that phase as well. Good Luck, T.

I agree with the others; it's just not worth the battle. And I'm sure that her vehemence is only temporary. I'd try not to make a big deal out of it. As long as her outfits are weather appropriate, let it go.

Hi, my daughter is seven now and likes to wear her younger brother's clothes. My in-laws buy her clothes from the boys dept now. She went through a phase a few years ago where she would wear dresses every day. She doesn't like girl clothes because they are too tight or too short, but there are a few girl things she will wear and we have certain occasions where we tell her to dress like a girl. I hope she just carries on like this when she is a teenager, so I know I won't have to worry about her wearing anything revealing. She also won't wear a two piece bathing suit or anything sleeveless. It's a battle I choose not to fight with her. Jen

My mother, who mostly wears flannel and jeans, was totally amazed that as a child I insisted on growing my hair long and wearing dresses with poofy sleeves ONLY. She's jokingly commented that she even questioned if I had been switched at birth. For the longest time that's what I wore, dresses as long as I could get them with the poofiest sleeves I could find, all while jumping in mud puddles and catching frogs. Then in junior high I started borrowing my father's clothes and shaved my head - which, while it made more sense to her on a personal level, was certainly a switch. Now my hair is shoulder length and I wear mostly jeans and t-shirts, although I guess they're what most would call 'feminine' jeans and t-shirts.
Anyway, my point is that kids (and people in general) go through phases. Your daughter is probably just going through a phase, and even if she isn't...my mother certainly hasn't suffered for her dislike of more traditionally feminine attire. Try taking her shopping for girl clothes for parties and such so that she feels like she's been included in the choosing and hopefully won't hate it so badly. Also keep in mind that there are lots of 'girl' clothes out there that aren't dresses or frilly. She could always wear a nice blouse and dressy slacks to church.

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