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.


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.


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.


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.

Marrying a Tomboy



So you’ve found the girl of your dreams. She’s cute, confident, kind, loving, competitive… Wait a minute… How competitive are we talking? Are we talking, she enjoys watching football or she enjoys playing football? I mean, is she competitive where you will have a competitor rather than a partner? Will you be challenged daily on something as simple as to who can sink a paper towel in a waste basket from ten feet? Is this really someone you want to marry? Will she always wear casual, probably athletic clothes? Does she clean up nicely? What if she’s better than you at something athletic? What kind of wife will a tomboy make? Hmm… better find out before you put a ring on it, assuming she wears jewelry.

I don’t mean to sound chastising, but I’m curious what the title of this blog post means. My stats on this blog allow me to see some of the search terms people use to find The Tomboy Mommy. Recently, “marrying a tomboy”, popped up. I wonder what that person wanted to find out. I wander what he (presumably), wanted to assuage about marrying a tomboy. Clearly, if he is considering marriage, he must love her, or at leat possess an affinity in an amount that suffices the effort of considering marriag at some point.

Here’s the gist of a tomboy’s love life. We grow up being in tight with the boys because we play football with them on the playground, basketball after school, meet up for a game of shadows(hide and seek in the dark), and generally spend more time with the boys than any of our non tomboy counterparts and still spend time with our girl friends, moving between to the two groups of friends seamlessly. Then, middle school rears it’s ugly pubescent head. All of the sudden we’re spending a lot of time with the guys that our girlfriends wish they could, but without all of the tackling and skinned knees. The boys don’t look at us as girls really, but they’re noticing the other girls. We might have a crush here and there, but not on one of our buddies. Eventually though, one of our guy friends will become attractive to us. One of our girlfriends will think so too and, envious of the time we get to spend with him and our easy relationship, will want to know all about him. So you make your move, only to be told we’re one of the guys and hey, tell me about this friend of yours.

Welcome to the love life of a tomboy.

High school comes and your mom is still waiting for you to outgrow being a tomboy and starting conversations with, “One day when you meet your husband…or life partner”. The boys are too big and strong to play football with anymore, and besides, your old girlfriends don’t like you hanging out with their men. Some of the other tomboys are deciding whether guys are worth the trouble and considering whether they should try out girls (some always knew). The guys are happy to flirt with you one on one, but not in public and certainly have no intention of taking you out. You’re cuter and more compatible with them than their girlfriends, but, they don’t have the self-confidence to date a “strong female”, whatever that means. There are a couple of really nice guys asking you out, but they’re not the square jawed jock you have your eye on, and you don’t have the self-confidence to go out with them.

But high school is a brief stop and life after high school brings new opportunities and opens new doors. Outside of the clicks and clichés of high school, people can be themselves and make choices they wouldn’t and couldn’t make before. You can be yourself and people actually like you for it. You meet a guy who likes you for you, even with your skinned knees.

You fall in love, and with marriage being the next obvious step, the jerk googles, marrying a tomboy.

Ok, maybe he’s not a jerk, but, what the heck?

What is so worrisome about marrying a tomboy? Are you worried she might run off with one of her girlfriends? Will she eat her young? I mean, if you love someone enough to be considering marriage, why would the fact that she’s a tomboy give you pause now? You clearly knew this about her and yet fell in love with her anyway, despite this malady. Now it’s a deal breaker? Here’s what you get when you marry a tomboy:

A woman that is fiercely loyal and passionate.

A partner that not only wants you to watch football, but fights with you over which game has priority on the big TV.

A wife that is easy to shop for, because she prefers a new kayak to diamond ear rings.

A female that doesn’t take 2 hours to get out the door.

A lover that has great cardio and endurance.

A mother that teaches their kids how to be strong, confident individuals.

So, to the guy who googled, “Marrying a tomboy”, unless you were curious for ideas of how to make a wedding exciting enough for her, I suggest going with the instincts that allowed you to fall in love with her in the first place, but be prepared to never have a dull moment. I hope whatever sites you ended up on gave you great advice. I’m sorry I hadn’t thought of writing something about it before now. My best advice is, if you love her, marry her- you’ll be in for a hell of a ride.

Butcher Paper Christmas

I had this brilliant idea to let my 2 year old son color butcher paper for wrapping paper. It’s like a sweat shop up in here. He’s sick of coloring and I’m back logged on wrapping. We started out with Christmas music and laughing, and now, 20 feet into the roll, it’s f-bombs and screw this.

Pregnant exercise

Sometimes I get up and around in the morning, fully aware of the progressive discomfort of pregnancy, and yet my mind still inadvertently begins planning the awesome workout I’m going to do full of plyos and tire flipping. Then I remember I can’t put on my own shoes so I eat a whole bag of Funyuns instead. I have an all or nothing personality. 

I was training for my first amateur mma fight when my husband and I found out I was pregnant, so my workout regiment was intense and my diet was strict. I still go to the dojo to train when I feel well enough and I still lift weights (all activities modified of coarse for being six months prego), but now I’m trying to make baby weight, not fight weight.

A mommy that’s a tomboy…

I feel compelled to begin this blog by defining what constitutes a tomboy mommy. I have been procrastinating writing this post because it requires I examine myself on a level that depletes the creative force behind writing fun things about being a tomboy and a mom. Let’s make a deal; I promise to define what it means to be a tomboy mommy through regular posts of my experiences and insights and together we’ll draw some sort of conclusion as to what what the title of this blog means. By a show of follows, who is with me?