What Is A Tomboy?

What is a tomboy?  I find that people are either very specific in their answers, or very vague and not really sure.  I find this even among other tomboys.  I know girls who do hair, make-up, dress up, but play rugby.  Are they tomboys?

I personally have short hair, live in cargo shorts and t-shirts, do not wear make-up and fight mma as my retirement sport from rugby.  Oh, and I’m almost 38 and have 2 kids and a husband.

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I have tomboy friends who are gay and dress in men’s wear, and those who dress girly.

I don’t think there really is one kind of tomboy.  I suspect it is just a word to describe a woman that isn’t really girly.

It doesn’t make us less feminine.  I still have all the bits and pieces of a female, so I couldn’t be more or less feminine.  I still have two xx chromosomes.  I am a female regardless of how many tackles I make.

 

So what is a tomboy, then?  Please take the time to take the poll and let me know what you think a tomboy really is.  I’m curious to know, because I do not believe it can realy be defined.  I have kept it basic on purpose, or you can fill in your own idea.

 

Tomboy Wife

I’m starting to feel like I should have made this blog, The Tomboy Wife.  Seriously, you folks find yourselves here primarily through the search terms, “tomboy wife”, “marrying a tomboy”, “should I marry a tomboy?”, “what’s it like marrying a tomboy?”, will a tomboy wife eat her young?…Ok, I made the last one up, but I think it’s just a matter of time before that one pops up.

I’ve been married almost ten years and have two kiddos.  I think we’re all doing just fine.   I have two sons who go to my dojo with with me and watch me train.  Yes, at 15 months old and 4 years old, they both know what a jab/cross combo is and that it is a cardinal sin to wear their shoes on the mats.

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Marrying a tomboy will be a challenge, for sure, if you are not a secure and confident human.  Tomboys, by nature (and due to our engaging in activities that constantly build self-esteem), are assertive and assured in nature.  Your tomboy probably doesn’t need your approval.  Count yourself lucky if you’ve found yourself a tomboy that loves you.  They probably love you for you, not for something they need from you (other than companionship and a partner in crime).

I suspect you are more concerned with what others will think of your tomboy partner.  Screw them.  I mean, that’s the best advice I’ve got.  A tomboy will make you feel like the most amazing human alive.  Will your judgmental friends?

From the motion picture, Love & Basketball

From the motion picture, Love & Basketball.

I will add this cautionary aside so as to avoid leading you astray as to the awesomeness of all tomboys.  We do tend to be competitive in our relationships.  The mature tomboy has learned to temper this need to compete with their spouse.

You may find that your tomboy treats you as a competitor.

If this is the case, I would suggest you have a conversation with her to reiterate that you do not want to be her competitor, but her partner- her equal, neither above nor below her.  If you act above her, she will compete with you mercilessly.  If you act beneath her, she will not respect you.  She has probably had to compete against the boys the majority of her life for equality or comparison, either real or percieved.  Please be patient. I assure you she is worth the intimidation you may be feeling right now.  We’re really just looking for real relationships where we can be ourselves.

If you are searching for answers as to whether you should marry your tomboy, your tomboy is your best resource.

Where Do Boppies Go to Die?

This is a serious question. Where do Boppies go to die?

I still have the Boppy from my first son’s infancy, then I have the one from my second son. Now that my baby is ten months old, we don’t use it anymore.

There are several baby items in my house that I am not concerned about re-homing. A bit of cleaning off of the caked on food and baby goo, and we’re good to hand-me-down. But the Boppy is kind of borderline.

Can you hand down an item that has had your breast milk leaked onto it? Really, it’s kind of like, here, have my pillow. But if you can’t give it away, and you don’t need it, where does it go?

I have a hard time throwing away something as substantial as a Boppy. I mean, aside from it’s substance and size, it has meaning. It braced my abdomen as I recovered from a C-section, it cradled my baby while he nursed, then assisted him as he sat up, and caught him as he plopped over. I mean, it won’t fit in a babybook, and it keeps getting tossed around the living room as it falls off the back of the couch, or behind a chair.

Boppies are like zombies, really slow and stupid, but they always seem to catch up with you.

I try to come up with a way to repurpose it. It works fairly well to support a tablet, but not wide enough for my laptop. It serves decently when I’m reading a book, but not very well as a neck brace like for traveling (it’s just not practical). That makes me think though that it might serve well for road trips. I might be onto something there.

How have you used your old Boppy? Do you think it’s ok to include them in the items you donate to new moms? Leave me a comment and let me know. Seriously, I really want to know.

I’m a Tomboy…Mommy

Happy New Year to all!

It has been just over a year since I started The Tomboy Mommy, and in that year I have written about issues unique to being a tomboy and a mommy, fitness, and just general musing on parenthood, tomboy or otherwise.  I have taken a hiatus since October as I finished my book, and now that I’m letting that marinate in my mind before I begin the final polish, I can get back to blogging.

It’s been a curious affair, this blog.  I’ve found that there are a lot of people concerned about tomboys, as if we may or may not be a plague on society.  Oddly, I have gotten many queries through search engines as to the prudence of marrying or dating a tomboy.  I’m baffled by this particular concern, but I wrote about it in response, which you can find here at, Marrying a Tomboy.

Another concern that pops up through search engines is the case of tomboys and breasts.  I have to admit, I had some hesitation about their development myself, but found aside from Breasting Feeding and Sports, they have hindered me little in my pursuit of an active lifestyle.

There have also been people who have found their way to my blog because they were concerned about raising a tomboy.  I wrote about this in, How to Raise a Tomboy. My mother seemed to have a harder time with this than my father, but I was the second of five girls, so, my being a tomboy gave my dad someone to do boy stuff with.  My mom wondered whether I was gay, which is a fair assumption.  I didn’t realize at the time, but she provided me gay role models and started conversations like, “When you find your husband…or life partner.”.  She made me wear a dress to school at least once a week, but gave up on it when I cried hysterically all day at school.  We worked out a system and other than having to come out as straight at thanksgiving one year in my twenties, things were great.

It’s hard to not make parts of this blog about being gay as a tomboy. Though I am not, some of by best friends are (and they were as convinced as my mother that I was), and it is a concern that I think those raising tomboys have.  This year I will include guest posts from tomboys who are gay, because though I am an honorary lesbian, I am not actually, and cannot address such important and sensitive education on my own.

I called this blog, The Tomboy Mommy, simply because I am a mommy that’s a tomboy.  I have found though that there is an opportunity to help others figure out what that means for them and those they care about that may be tomboys.  I think the greatest challenge to a tomboy is just being accepted for who we are- pony tail, abrasions and all.

Please share my blog and help me reach more of those that need to know that there is a place where we can be tomboy children, tomboy grown-ups, tomboy spouses and tomboy mommies- and, we can do it all with a sense of humor.

Mischief Night

istockphotos.com/jurgenfr

istockphotos.com/jurgenfr

It’s mischief night- the night before Halloween.  This is a new concept to me.  Where I’m from, there is no mischief night.  I love the idea of it though and am seriously miffed that it wasn’t a thing in my community growing up.  I could have had some serious fun.  Instead we biscuited friends and strangers’ cars in drive bys and had no name for these pre-Halloween mischievous outings.

Biscuiting,by the way, is when you buy cans of biscuits and throw raw dough at oncoming vehicles or place them all over someone’s car windows and let them dry on. We typically cruised around looking for our friends to peg with the raw dough, but occasionally got bored and went after a stranger’s vehicle.  We were chased on more than one occasion, which made the hooliganism that much more exhilarating.

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One of my second favorite mischievous things to do was stealing security signs.  You know, the little signs in people’s gardens that says the house is protected by such and such home security system.  We’d pull up and every one would get out and run up to the houses, each grabbing a sign and running back to the car.  We quit only when we ran out of space for all of us and the signs in the car.

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We did our share of TPing.  It wasn’t our caper of choice, but a memorable outing was when we TP’d one of my buddy’s ex-girlfriend’s house.  She lived at the end of a long driveway.  We were decorating nicely when I hear someone yell, “run!”, and hear an angry man yelling obscenities before I see him.  We were all track and cross country runners, so we made it to the car in time, though I felt like I was running in one of those dreams where your legs are heavy and you can hardly move.  Unfortunately, one of the other girls had a bad angle and it looked like she and the dad were going to hit the car at the same time.  She made it first, but just barely, and the dad was grabbing the door handle as we pulled her in.  Ah, good times!

I guess we didn’t need a mischief night, but it would have added to the fun.  What were your most mischievious outings as a teen? I’d love to hear them! Leave a comment and tell us all about it!

Why We Can’t Have Nice Things

I remember my mom laughing when my big sister decided to get nice leather furniture when two of her kids were under the age of five. I remember her laughing, loudly, mockingly.

I know why now. My mom had five girls and anything nice that made it into the house, never made it out alive. I remember strategically placing a cabbage patch stamp right in the middle of one of her pictures, and being very proud of it. I remember falling through the glass door of the high tech stereo system. Yes, her laughing was well informed.

I have just purchased a new living room suit and am super nervous. I have a six month old and a 3 year old. What was I thinking?

I purchased the protection plan at an additional sum, it alone exceeding the amount I have ever spent on all the furniture I’ve ever owned. Is that going to be enough to keep from allowing my kids to be kids around my nice things?

I guess that’s my biggest fear.

What if having nice things makes me a high strung screaming banshee of a mom, protecting my precious things form the heathens running amok in my home?

It’s almost not worth it. Well, almost.

I have a mountain bike that sits in a trainer in prime real estate in my small house. It has to be in a climate controlled area. My kids are not allowed to touch it (really I’d prefer they not even look at it), and my husband has made the mistake of throwing a pair of pants on the handle bars once. I mean, is having a nice couch and chair much different?

I refuse the idea that my kids can’t be expected to learn to behave in a manner that refrains from the destruction of personal property

Do they have to be allowed to destroy everything to enable their delicate brains to develop to well adjusted maturation? That would be a no. Not in my house anyway.  I have few rules that prevent my kids from getting to be kids.  I think a couch, chair, ottoman and a bicycle are not too much to ask to not destroy.

Sorry, kids. We are about to get a lot of learning experiences and opportunities to grow in to productive citizens, cause momma’s getting a new couch. I can hear my mom cackling somewhere.

 

Love and Tomboys

Love and Basketball. This movie is the tomboy’s love manifesto. This movie is what every tomboy wants the world to know about them.  But this is a movie.  In real life, it’s hard to see past a tomboy’s competitive nature and low maintenance coifing, to see the awesomeness that is dating a tomboy. You can check out a blog post summarizing the movie here.

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Everything about this movie, from the inability to identify well with mom, to the marginalization in school, to the double standard of a tomboy dedicated to her sport versus a boy dedicated to his, it’s all there. But the love story is what gets us.

The crux that resonates with tomboys is the love story.  Oh how desperately we want to be loved for who we are.  We have so many crushes but for the sole reason of our tomboy natures, we are overlooked.  Sure, we make great buddies, one of the guys, but we’re not girlfriend material.  So often we are expected to be guys.

We don’t want to be guys, we want to be girls with the same opportunities as the guys.

I want to go out without make-up, like the guys.  I want to be accepted for my natural face.  I want hair that is conducive to my active lifestyle, whether that’s short or always back in a ponytail.  I want to be passionate about expressing myself through physical endevours that require I train constantly to obtain.  I want to express my competitiveness through appropriate channels of sport, rather than through snarky relationships with other women.  I want to be interested in a guy that likes the things that I like, a built-in training partner for running, mountain biking, playing catch or any number of other physical activities.

But that’s not what most guys want, and that’s ok.  I’m not putting the responsibility on the guys.  We want the love story in Love and Basketball.  The idea that someone could love us just how we are is overwhelming.  We want that so badly.  Doesn’t everybody want that so badly?

I can remember crying my eyes out in my early twenties, because I wanted that so badly.

I was so sick of being passed over for the sole reason of being a tomboy.

I was cuter, more compatible, fun to be with, but I wasn’t girlfriend material.

Their loss, right? BS.  It was my loss over and over again.  Being a tomboy  can be heart breaking.  The beauty of it though?  We’re resilient.  We’re strong.  We are not easily beaten.  We wipe our tears off, get back up, and get back out there.

We don’t always get our Hollywood ending like in Love and Basketball, but we do get our happily ever after.  We find that someone that loves us for us and that we love for them, because we are trained from the beginning to never give up on ourselves.  There are some lonely years, and tears that we cry in private, but our love story is out there.

Love & Basketball

Love & Basketball

But let me add this, fellow tomboys. You know there is a guy or two out there who liked you for you, but you didn’t like him for him. He might not have been the jock, maybe he was a little dorky, but he liked you and you wouldn’t go out with him. When we grow up, the older jocks whose life and other women have kicked around a little, see our potential, but we’ve grown up too, and see that guy who had the maturity and self-esteem to like us back in the day. Give “that guy” a shot and see what happens. I think you’ll be surprised.

The thing is, we are a little competitive in love. Let’s not pretend that we are victims, we don’t play that part well, as tomboys. We want to control the odds by working harder, by practicing, by pushing. Love and tomboys need time to develop into their happy endings. In the meantime, Love and Basketball is our Notebook, our chick-flick.