In Defense of Pink Legos

Lately it seems like I’ve been reading a lot of huffs and puffs about “girl” Legos.  The ones that are pink and purple.  The ones that provide instructions on how to build a dune buggy or hair salon.  Apparently, lots of people are upset about this.

And I can’t figure out why.

Until we discovered the Lego Friends collection, my girls never even sniffed in the direction of Legos.  We’d breeze by the Lego aisle at Target and they didn’t blink.  But, once we discovered Lego Friends they actually wanted me to stop the cart.  And, I’m glad I did!  Now all three kids love playing with Legos.  We have a stash of “boy” ones and a stash of “girl” ones, and they are used interchangeably by all kids. Little Vivian has her own bin full of princess Duplo Legos, and even 4 year old Mack is happy to play with those, too. I think adults are the ones who are getting all antsy about gender-specific toys – in reality, kids just want to have fun with whatever is in front of them, whether it is pink dolls or blue trucks or an empty box.

Why is a Lego lemonade stand inherently worse than a Lego space ship?  In both cases, the kids are independently working, following directions, creating something fun to play with.  As far as I’m concerned, any toy that keeps my kids occupied for more than five minutes is a win.  And, any toy that engages their creativity and utilizes their brain power gets bonus points.  Legos – pink and primary – offer all of this.  So why do so many adults care which color the kids are playing with??  Just let the kids play!!

And, I have to ask: just what is the *problem* with pink?  A girl who likes pink has the same chances for success in life as a girl who likes blue, so let’s stop making it seem like toddler color preference determines the course of a life.  Because it doesn’t.  And, what is the problem with “girly” girls who like “girly” things?  Should I force Evie and Vivian to play with “boy” toys? I don’t think so.  Because liking girly things does not doom a girl to a lifetime of 1950’s-style domestic drudgery.

Parents are the first and primary influence on kids’ lives.  Not toys.  Not toy companies. Not marketing gurus.  If I tell Evie and Vivian that they can be a president/business owner/doctor/mother, then they will believe that they can do anything.  If it just so happens that they spend their formative years dressing Barbies and building Lego pet stores, then I consider it an imaginative childhood well spent!

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