Expectations or Limitations?


Sofia Nuñez, Editor

According to thejaneclub.org, “research shows that children have definite stereotypes about women, ethnicities. and other social groups by age 5.” Currently in the 21 century massive changes occured. Traditional mindsets are trying to adapt to the new changes our society is facing. Abolishing gender stereotypes is one of the most important movements that has been recently taking place. Gender stereotypes limit the natural development of people and make them act a certain way according to what is accepted by society. This stereotypes become a form of expectations, and when parents or guardians require their daughters and sons to follow certain expectations according to their gender they are preventing them from growing spontaneously, encouraging preconceived ideas.

Parents have a huge level of responsibility in order to raise their kids healthy and happy, but sometimes they unconsciously lose the hang of it. According to a study posted by the New York Times, American parents are still more concerned about their boys to be smarter, and their girls to be skinnier. “Parents have preconceived expectations and notions that girls have to be a certain way and boys have to be a certain way,” Salome Beyer, founder of girl up and 10th grade student at TCS, said. Parents unconsciously expect this from their children, and they do not realize that what they are doing is falling in a trend that drops all pressure in children. Not all girls prioritize having a perfect body, and not all boys prioritize getting straight A’s. There are so many other interests and passions to develop. For kids it is extremely challenging to go out of their parents way and stand up for their own thoughts.

Parents are the most influential piece in their kids lives. According to verywellfamily.com, kids who receive too much pressure from parents are more likely to suffer from mental illness, suicidal thoughts, self esteem problems and sleep deprivation. “Even though we disagree with some things, our parents beliefs are still in our chip,  in our brain, that we have to act a certain way, or if we don’t do certain things we are going to be judged or we are going to be less successful,” Salome Beyer, said. A sense of fear is generated because kids believe that if they do not follow their life instructions they might be considered a failure. The problem is that instead of having the basic moral expectations, parents have expectations based on what society superficially expects. These expectations might be considered more as limitations. There are people extremely talented regardless of their gender, but when they become alienated by stereotypes, many decide to take unwanted paths just to fit in.

Many traditional minds might argue that this expectations are necessary, “I would expect them to pick different jobs, studies have proven that woman pick less paying jobs,” Daniel Zuloaga, 11th grade student at TCS, said. However, in the laboral field, woman are also considered inferior and therefore they hardly get chosen for the strongest jobs, even though they have all the capacities. “I’ve seen plenty of powerful women squander a chance at power simply because they waited for someone else to give them permission to have power. There is no permission slip — you just have to BE powerful,” Shonda Rhimes, creator of Grey’s Anatomy, said.

Every human craves a sense of belonging to feel secure in their own environment, however it has become challenging to feel comfortable and at the same time staying honest to our own essence. It is a necessity for all human beings to start becoming more flexible towards different passions, interests, etc. If we become a society were we accept and encourage everyone to develop their passion, regardless of stereotypes, outstanding individuals will be formed. The key is to start by the parents or the authority figure so they  promote authenticity and inclusion, careless about gender.