5 yr old boy in mom's clothing

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-17-2003
5 yr old boy in mom's clothing
Sat, 05-17-2003 - 9:39am
Does anyone have any experience with this? My 5 yr old son has recently been hiding some of my 2 yr old daughter and my clothing (bras, pantyhose, my daughters ballet slippers...even one of her diapers)in his room. I peaked in at one point to find him with my hose on and trying to get her ballet slippers on. He's always been a big 'dress up" guy, mostly superheros and army men, etc. What bothers me most about this recent behaviour is that he is so covert about it... We are very socially liberal parents, we don't enforce rigid traditional gender stereotypes so while I would expect him to explore a little, I'm surprised that he is hiding it...any thoughts?
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Wed, 05-21-2003 - 11:44am
Welcome and I'm sorry it took so long for you to get a response.

While YOU may not emphasize anything , society does. He may be getting the message from other kids or other adulst that it is "different" or unacceptable. He is old enough for you to talk ot him about it though. Ask him "Why are you in my room to dress up?" He may surprise you with his answer.

I wouldn't be too upset, and I wouldn't jump the gun, for lack of a better term. Unless you notice other signs of low self esteem, I would just talk to him and let him know there is nothing wrong with liking ot dress up.

Other signs of low esteem MAY BE:

excessive crying

lack of determination

withdrawl from friends and activities

avoidance of looking others in the eye when interacting

These MAY BE sign of a lowered self esteem, it may not. It's just something to look at and think about. IF you really do have concerns, I would suggest you go to a therapist, or family phychologist. Your school district should be able to refer you.

I hope this helps you relax a bit. I'm sure it's nothing. He is probably just experimenting and checking things out. Let us know what happens and what you decide.


Janet =)

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