How I Got Over Turning My Daughter Against the Color Pink

How I Got Over Turning My Daughter Against the Color Pink

One mom tries to turn her daughter against the color pink – and learns a major lesson.

By Nicole Fabian-Weber

When I found out I was having a girl, I made it very clear that she wasn't going to be a "pink" girl. I would casually let it drop in conversations that I wasn't a fan of the color, and I certainly wasn't going to be "one of those moms" who dolled up her little girl in bright pink tutus and pink hair bows and, well, anything else pink. She was going to be a "neutral" baby, dressed in whites, grays, and beiges.

To be honest, part of my reasoning and desire behind not wanting to don my little girl in traditionally female colors was because, yes, it did seem a little stereotypical and closed-minded to me. But also, to be completely frank, I just didn't really like the color pink.

After my daughter was born, sweet friends would come over to visit, bearing gifts like earth-toned onesies. In fact, for the first year or so of my daughter's life, when I was in complete control of her fashion choices, she more or less stuck to this kind of color palette. Nothing I would have deemed "garish," and for the most part, nothing pink.

But then my daughter started forming opinions. And pink? Pink was very high on her list of "things I want to/neeeeeeed to wear."

That's right. My daughter, ironically (or not, depending on whom you ask), loves her some pink. We're not quite at the point where she demands to dress herself every day, resulting in an all-pink-all-the-time wardrobe, but if given the choice, she'll always choose pink. And tutus. The girl has never met a tutu she didn't like either. Gender-neutral? Hardly.

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A few months before her third birthday, I asked her what she wanted, and she, not totally surprisingly, said, "A pink tutu." She already has a black tutu and a white tutu, but my girl wanted to go classic. She wanted to go as girly as she possibly could go.

"Well," I said, "They have all different colored tutus, you know. You could get a blue one, or a green one, or yellow. Ooh, yellow! Wouldn't a yellow tutu be nice?"

"No," she said flatly. "I like pink."


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A few days later, I ordered a tutu for my daughter online -- with matching ballet shoes, because why not go all in, right? -- and I got to thinking. "Who the heck was I to try to influence my daughter's likes?" As her mother, yes, I should try to influence her in other ways. But her preferences? Definitely not. And I had been doing it since before she was even born! If anything seemed closed-minded, it was that.

Since my little epiphany, I've indulged my daughter in her pink proclivity as much as possible. In fact, I've indulged all of her preferences (within reason) a bit more. When I saw how happy that pink tutu and ballet shoes made her (ones that I would have never picked out on my own), it was impossible not to smile. She likes what she likes. Who am I to deprive her of that? Who am I to try to point her in another direction?

When I was still pregnant with my daughter -- with each of my kids, actually -- I had a vision of what they would be like. And they both have managed to surprise me more than I ever thought possible -- in a good way. Neither is what I envisioned. They are both so much better. And if liking a color I don’t love is among those surprises, so be it.

To be honest, I'm actually coming around to pink these days. It's hard not to develop a liking for something that makes my daughter so happy. I guess you could say I'm as influenced by her as she is by me. And I think that's awesome.

Have you ever tried to influence your toddler's preferences?

Nicole Fabian-Weber is the mama to a toddler girl and a baby boy. She lives outside of NYC and writes for The Stir and numerous other online publications. Right now, she’s probably fantasizing about sleep.

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