When we were checking out our books at the library this morning, a kind librarian came up and asked if the children wanted stickers. Of course, they answered in the affirmative. Shen then proceeded to give Charlotte a pink princess sticker, and gave Kieran a choice between monsters (left-over from Hallowe'en) or Christmas stickers. I had the children thank her, and that was that.
But I was a tad irritated at the assumption about what my children would like purely because of their genders. Before I continue, I am not saying that gender distinctions are nonexistent or completely arbitrary, but there's also a lot of room for individual taste.
Perhaps I am sensitive to this because I've never been very fond of pink or dolls. Kieran and Charlotte both happily play with dolls and trains, though Charlotte is fonder of dolls than Kieran. Kieran insisted on a pink cake with pink candles for his birthday, and asked for a pink truck on a sweater. Of course, it wasn't that long ago that pink was considered to be a masculine colour.
So, yes, boys and girls are different and have different interests and ways of playing, but it isn't always along stereotypical gender lines, and I think this is important to remember.