CONVERSATIONS · slice of life

Can women wear button-downs? #sol16


The blouse (shirt) in question.

“Why you wearing Daddy’s shirt?” Isabelle asked me during breakfast.
I glanced down at my blouse. “This isn’t Daddy’s shirt,” I replied.”It’s a Daddy shirt!” Isabelle declared.

“No, it isn’t. It’s a ladies’ button-down blouse.”

“It’s a man shirt! It’s not for ladies! You took it from Daddy,” Isabelle insisted.

“First of all, this isn’t Daddy’s shirt. Does Daddy wear shirts with pintucks like these?” I gestured to the front of the blouse.

“Yes,” she said.

“He really doesn’t, Isabelle. And second of all, ladies wear button-down shirts too.”

“But it looks like a man’s shirt. Mans wear buttons, not ladies,” she whined.

“I assure you, it is a ladies’ blouse.”

“It looks like Daddy’s,” she repeated.

I decided to drop it. Clearly, I wasn’t going to win this one.

“Here’s what I think,” I started. “You need to finish your breakfast. Take another bite of your English muffin.”

And just like that, we moved on.


17 thoughts on “Can women wear button-downs? #sol16

  1. Isn’t it funny the things children want to put into “boxes” to categorize their knowledge? Clothes seem to be a major consideration at that age; my own four-year-old daughter went through a phase where shoes had to match her outfits exactly (i.e. a yellow dress needed yellow shoes). I was worried I had a budding Imelda Marcos on my hands, until she finally moved on from that belief.

    1. I wish I could say she was, but I think she was dead serious. I had surgery a few months ago and haven’t worn many structured clothes around here for the past few months. (I’ve hidden under lots of sweaters.) I think the re-entry of a button-down blouse truly threw her for a loop.

  2. Nothing like shifting gears with a subject change to get away from an argument. Again, and I keep writing this to you, what a potentially cool picture book if you could come up with some of the other ways gender bias comes out from perceptions of five year olds. (Just saying)

  3. She will be so glad in the future to have all these conversations recorded (maybe she will not be glad until she has children of her own). There is nothing like the all knowingness of a child!

  4. I am sitting here laughing Stacey! And I will admit this is not the way I thought the slice was going to go! I’m just always amazed at what goes on in their little brains. Thanks for the laugh before exercise!

  5. A perfect slice! I’m enjoying getting to know more and more about Isabelle. Just make sure you don’t let her know you wrote all these posts about her until she is well past those teen years! Love her.

  6. She is an observer of the world around her. You should have your husband try to put the shirt on tonight to demonstrate how this totally doesn’t fit. Love the way you changed the subject.

  7. I know this, but forget sometimes. We need to be careful what our children learn, but sometimes, it’s beyond our capabilities. So funny, and the first of many disagreements about what’s what. Wise to drop it.

  8. So funny — where do they get these ideas from! I love that you held your own and then let it go. There is only so much shifting a person can do in one day!

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