I've mentioned before that I am captivated by celebrity gossip. I don't know why. Mainly, it's just fun to read little tidbits here and there. I try to make a daily visit to the websites for People and TMZ. A recent gossip rag obsession has me confused: why do I care that one of Angelina Jolie's daughters has short hair?
In a nutshell, there have been several articles about Shiloh and the fact that she a) dresses in "boyish" clothes and b) recently had her long locks chopped off. She's four. The website comments from people who claimed Shiloh is "being raised to be gay" simply made me roll my eyes. Yes, because all girls who wear pants and don't have long hair will, of course, come out as lesbians. Please. Let's not even get into the nature vs. nurture debate. Those are the comments that are there just to antagonize. The ones that made me angry were the parents, mostly moms, who questioned why a four year old is allowed to make decisions regarding her wardrobe and her hair. Ummmmm... because she's four and it's part of the process of growing up. Or have I been doing this all wrong?
When my daughters first exhibited signs of speech, I started giving them choices. Do you want the pink cup or the orange cup? The Elmo shirt or the Dora shirt? They had to answer with words, not pointing. My daughters are four, almost five, and, on a regular basis, I tell them to go upstairs and dress themselves or pick out their own bathing suit. Do we have disagreements now and then about appropriate outfits? Of course. But for the most part, I let them do their thing. They're not going to wear sweaters in sweltering heat or bathing suits in January, but that's part of the learning process, too. As school approaches, I'm sure we'll be having more discussions about which outfits they can and can't wear, but I'm still going to give them a say in what they wear... and something tells me not a single media outlet will be knocking on my door to report on the scandal of letting a bunch of four year olds pick out their own clothes.