Jul 3, 2010

WHY?! (or the difference between girls and boys)

Every parent can share the story of how frustrating it is to live through the age of "why?". This is the age that tries mom's soul, with never ending questions that often cannot be answered--at least not to the satisfaction of the preschool set.

I have come to the conclusion that much of the difference between little boys and little girls can be found in examining the nature of the "why".

With little girls the questions are oriented around what they see and experience.

"Why is the sky blue?"
"Why does it rain?"
"Why can't I dig up the seeds to see how they are growing?"
"Why does ice melt?"
"Why do I have to take a nap because YOU are tired, Mom?"
"Why did my kitten die and why can't I keep it anyway?"

While these questions are wearying in the fact that they often lead to a second, third and fourth question and sometimes embarrassing in that they reveal large gaps in their parent's knowledge, they serve a very real purpose. These questions help little girls to understand the world around them and how they relate to the world.

With little boys the questions are oriented around what their beleaguered parents see and experience--in fact the questions are not asked of the parents but by the parents.

"Why did you flush your sister's barbie down the toilet?"
"Why are you stapling the refrigerator?
"Why are you trying to feed the baby crayons?"
"Why did you shave the cat's tail?"
"why did you stick a ladybug up your nose?" and lest we forget...

These questions serve a very real purpose as well. The parent asks these questions in a desperate attempt to understand what happens inside the mind of a four year old boy that causes them to become an entity bent upon dismantling things around him and pushing the edge of the envelope in taking risks.

These little boys are in search of the same understanding that the little girls are after--to understand the world around them and how they relate to the world. They just seek to gain their understanding in a very different manner than their sisters. The girls talk their way into understanding. The boys act their way into understanding.

The parents pray their way into understanding. Or at least into surviving.


Liese4 said...


nuts4baseball said...

This is one of your best 'droppings'! So, true!

Terry said...

I do so understand. But 25 years ago when I moved to the country and met up with a friend to be who had 6 kidlets 3 of each and two of her sisters 1 of each said "I will take 6 teenage boys to 1 teenage girl any day". What? What? My own 1 of each were 11 and 8 then. The 8 being the girl.

Well 25 years later I second that emotion. Both my children have 2 daughters and my daughter said in in our last phone conversation " Mom, Emily is starting it." To which I replied "Oh is she crying in dressing rooms while trying on clothes?" "No, she already does that. Now she walks out of her room and burst into tears saying I don't know why I am crying".

I laugh, daughter sighs. We all know what they say about payback!