Thursday, April 14, 2011
FF: A Style of Their Own
My son has a predilection for ugly shoes. He likes lights, super hero motifs and velcro. Recently, he needed new sneakers and the ones he was really pushing for had teeth. A whole row of crocodile teeth lining the sole of the shoe. I'm all for autonomy and independent children; I let him pick out his last two pairs of sneakers, (both ugly, incidentally,) but I draw the line at shoes with molars. "No characters, no lights and no teeth." Those were the parameters. He chose a respectable pair of grey and orange sneakers. He likes them. I like them. Win/win.
But compromise can be hard to come to.
My sister wore the same outfit to preschool almost every day for an entire year. I don't remember it exactly, but I think it involved blue spandex shorts with sunflowers on them. And a puff-painted shirt? One thing I love about my mom is that she wanted happy kids more than she wanted perfectly groomed, color coordinated Mini Boden models. It was rarely worth a confrontation to get us to dress a certain way, so she let us dress ourselves and do our own hair from a fairly young age. We look like urchins in a lot of our childhood pictures. Happy urchins, though :)
Sometimes children really get their hearts set on ugly things. Or cute things in horrible combinations. They want to wear the same thing over and over. And over!
What's your approach to all this as a parent? Is it worth a battle to get them to dress and groom the way you'd like them to? Do your kids choose their own outfits? Do you edit their choices to make sure they match? Do you allow them to pick their own clothes/shoes for purchase?