Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Little man, huh...?

...for the last couple of weeks, I've been wondering about the term, "little man". I know guys who use it in reference to their sons, "yeah, my little man," or "the little man was--". Usually this leads into some kind of macho-riff, like last night's--if your son likes the Tiger Wood video game does that make him a wuss?

One guy said, "I made him take it out and put Madden in there," and another said, "the little man's got to stop watching that stuff. I don't want my son growing up to play golf. I want a football player."

Now, I on the other hand said, "I told the coach my kid couldn't play, even though the team wanted him because he's built like a freezer-chest." And they all looked at me with that open-mouthed stare like, what is this woman thinking? Is she crazy or something?

Don't get me wrong, I want my kid to succeed. But he's going to sink or swim intact and in one piece. Just because other people haven't had the whole quadriplegic thing happen to them doesn't mean some guy won't kick my kid in the head and he'll end up a vegetable for the rest of his life. And what mom would want her kid getting beat on and yelled at? So help me, God. If some jerk--I don't care who they are, yells at my kid, he's going to get a Doc Marten where the sun don't shine. I'm always amazed when I drive past Little League practice and see people letting total strangers berate their kids for a chance to win something that in the long run should matter more to the child than the parent.

There is no daughterly equivalent to "little man." Just "little woman." And that means wife. So if a wife is the little woman, what does that say about daughters?

1 comment:

Jennifer McKenzie said...

Ugh. I hate ALL those terms.
Most who look at how we live our lives in this house would think we were stereotyping our children.
I'm a SAHM and my boys go hunting with Dad while I stay home and write.
They're boys and do boy stuff.
But I don't think we're raising them to be "Little Men" and my husband won't be calling me the "Little Woman" without resulting pain.