Does teaching a boy to sew make a difference?

Sis. Sensible wants to know.

I’d still like to think the answer is yes, even though I┬árefused to buy my son guns and then I lo0ked out the window one day and he’d fashioned his own, from sticks.

Published by datingjesus

Just another one of God's children.

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24 Comments

    1. See, now, I was going to call you a name, but I couldn’t think of a good one. Rock on with your bad self, Tod. I just hemmed a pair of pants, myself.

  1. My boys both sew and still got into that stupid weaponry/battle thing. I don’t recall anything that dogmatic as what your son says although the youngest used to say how he didn’t think gay marriage should be spoken of in front of children.

    1. I think it’s good to show boys and girls that it’s a big wide world out there, myself. You’re up against some powerful societal crap, but you can at least reinforce at home that children have a lot of choices.

      1. Yeah, and it can’t hurt when dads don’t reinforce the boys’ statements.

        Only partly related to the above: the parents of my oft-mentioned 4-year-old neighbor Thuperman have fairly trad roles right now because Mom decided to stay home with her two little kids (she had previously been a gym teacher and swimming coach once her older daughter was in school), but she’s on a soccer team so she’s not THAT trad. Dad has never met an internal combustion engine that he doesn’t love, so THAT’s pretty trad. Anyway, whenever Thuperman sees any tool or yardwork equipment that I use, he informs me that “my Dad has one of those” or “my Dad has a bigger ladder” or “my Dad can probably fix that.” So he’s pretty fixated on Dad right now, but he did tell me that he didn’t want to go to pre-school because he’d miss his Mom.

        1. Honestly, some of that behavior — and the things Sensible wrote about — seem pretty standard for that age. It’s like the little boys are asserting themselves and their little boyness. Or something. I wouldn’t see it as a red flag necessarily. It’s more a phase. I remember a certain swagger that would come and go in my own sons and they turned out fairly fabulously (sez me).

    1. I’m out of practice. I once could hem a pair of pants (or a skirt) in just a few minutes. This took a half-hour and these are not inordinately wide-legged pants.

    2. Hold the thread in your non-dominant hand with just a couple of inches of the thread facing the good sharp scissors held in your dominant hand. Hold the scissors at a 45-degree angle to the thread. Cut the thread. This should give you a “point” on the thread to put into the needle-eye. Put the scissors down. You can moisten the thread-end to keep the fibers together, but don’t moisten it much. Do NOT twist the thread-end. Pick up the needle, NOT one with a tiny eye, at least not yet. Insert the thread into the needle eye.

          1. I dunno, I could use a little attention, and considering I’m pretty old now, it might only be a couple of generations but I’m ready.

      1. She’s right. Again, I don’t sew much but sew even less regularly now, but the whole idea of making the thread pointed by cutting it at an angle makes all the difference.

  2. My Mom meet my Dad when they both were working at a Blouse and sportswear company. She was a seamstress, he was a designer.
    Years later, Mom opened a Bridal store.
    We had one of those old Singer industrial sewing machines in our house.
    I learned to sew, which came in handy with my short legs.
    I taught my girls all things “guy,” like cars and my son knows what darts were on a blouse.
    Again, roles are for snare drums.

    1. Excellent! I remember talking to my sons about cooking by telling them they’d one day be on their own in their own man-cave and they’d need to know how to feed themselves. I’d say I taught them to cook but that would be lying. They’re both fabulous in the kitchen, far better than I am.

      1. A parents job is to prepare children for life, not teach some made up rules about gender.
        My son lives with two friends at school.
        They eat pizza and frozen dinners, he cooks his meals.
        His friends think he’s crazy.
        But they love his fried rice.

  3. It’s really not an either/or kind of thing, folks.

    Grandma taught my younger son some basic sewing skills this past year. He’s really into it and has made some clever things… like a protective carry pouch for his Nintendo.

    However he still loves his Nerf guns. Just had them out this past weekend, gleefully shooting his brother, who naturally shot right back.

    1. Mike, I wish that were true across the board, but in some fundamentalist “enclaves,” especially in the deep South of our fine country, it still is very much an either/or kind of thing, where kids are pushed into certain gender molds and are afraid (or don’t even think to) break out. There are places where a boy would be beaten up by his friends for touching a needle and thread and a girl would be labeled a lesbian for touching a wrench. Those funny lines in Mad Men are played out every day in real life in 2010.
      During the last presidential race-to-nominee there was a quote in a newspaper by a woman in Missouri who said, “Oh no, I couldn’t vote for Hillary–she’s a woman, and women aren’t supposed to lead. That’s a man’s job.”
      My post was partially facetious, but I have been scarred for life by gender bias, and I feel for all little girls who are told “you can’t because you’re a girl” and all little boys who are told “you can’t because you’re a boy.” Even more, I feel for their parents, who were also raised with that kind of ignorance and know no better than to perpetuate it.
      I started my blog in part to bring attention to this problem in our modern culture. The more we talk about it now and bring it into the light, the better off future generations will be.
      OMG, this soapbox is so high I’m feeling dizzy. I think I’ll climb down now.

      1. When Madeline Albright was appointed Secretary of State, I got a call from a parishioner, demanding that “I” stop this appointment because “it’s a man’s job.”

        True biz.

  4. Every human should know how to take care of their own lives. From changing tires to getting out stains in the laundry, from sewing on a button or hemming a pair of pants to making a meal. LIFE SKILLS for all!!

    By the way, witholding guns never worked at my house. My son would use anything; a stick a truck or the pretzel to make a weapon!

    1. What she said. Or kids can always use their fingers and point ’em like a gun.

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