6 year old daughter will not wear girl clothing
09/11/2007 at 05:47 AM

My six year old daughter will not wear any type of girl clothing. We argue every morning before school about what she is going to wear. Should I back off or go buy only girl clothing and make her wear it? I need help!! This really bothers me for some reason. THANK YOU.

Why are you arguing with a 6 year old?  That is your first mistake. You are the parent, she is the child, you make the decisions and that is it. 

On the other hand, how girly are the clothes you prefer?  Have you gone to he school and looked at what is the norm for children her age?  If you prefer frills and bows and lace and the other little girls are wearing t-shirts and jeans, you may be making her feel wierd. 

If this isn't the situation, then what you have is a power struggle where she is going to see if she is the boss, or if you are.  Do not argue with a child, be the boss that you are SUPPOSED to be, but be a sensible one.  When you are the boss, both you and your child win.


I am not asking for pink, sparkly, frilly stuff. I am just asking for no BOY clothes. And no I don't buy them other family members do. Do I argue with my elders? Bluejeans and t-shirts(without monster trucks, spiderman, superman, pirates, etc.) would be nice. 


As a mother of a "tom-boy",I know what you are dealing with. Yes, you are the boss, but you also dont want a miserable child.We compromised.Pink girl top with black cargo boy pants. Pink laces with black gym shoes.We picked out the outfits together. Somewhere along the line she decided to dress more like the girls in her class, and the ''tom- boy'' days are over. good luck!


If there are things in her wardrobe that YOU do not feel are appropriate, then remove them - regardless of who bought them, pack them up and put them in your closet or storage, or donate to goodwill or something.

My children are older, so I have most recently been dealing with bra straps or midriffs showing, so it can get worse. The easiest way I have found to handle clothing is to never let it get into the house.
However, I have to tell you, there are going to be much bigger issues as she gets older. You need to decide what is going to be more important to you --- choose your battles carefully, but once you decide, then make that choice clear and stick with it.
Good luck.

I empathize with you bec. right now this is my "struggle" with my 7 year old daughter. I am also looking for help about this so I am reading a book by Tedd Tripp "Shepherding a Child's Heart" and his premise is that we need to reach the child's heart and not just be satisfied with the outward behavior.


My 8 year old son's best friend is a girl. She has been his best friend since age 2. She is an athletic girl who wears baseball and hockey shirts every day. Her Mom is frustrated but has decided not to fight this. She used to wear boy pants, but now she is starting to curve a bit and boy pants are no longer comfortable, so she wears girl pants, but still no pink.

I'm sure age will change her, but if it doesn't, it doesn't. She is a nice, nurturing, sweet girl and there are so many girls of that age who want designer clothes, purses and cell phones-yes, at age 8!  This girl can't be bothered with that stuff.


I agree with sandyintn.  Draw the line on the things that are absolute no-nos, such as spaghetti straps and bare tummies.  Decide if this is one of those absolute no-nos.  Personally, my daughter considered herself a tom-boy and refused to wear dresses and pink.  I decided that this wasn't a problem as long as what she did wear was appropriate.  Now that she is 11, she chooses to wear skirts sometimes because she sees other girls wearing them.  In my opinion, let your daughter wear what she wants.  She will most likely change her mind in the not-too-distant future.


I am so glad that we have compulsory school uniforms in Australia! There are never any arguments about what is or isn't appropriate to wear to  school. Maybe you could try an alternative "school uniform". Take your daughter shopping and buy some "school clothing" that you can agree upon. Allow your daughter to choose her own clothing to wear to school from her "school clothing" only. Hopefully this will lead to fewer arguments. Try not to worry too much about girls/boys clothes at this age, as some children are still exploring gender roles. Maybe "boys" clothes are just more comfortable or practical if she is an active child. Why don't you ask her?


You should buy her some girl clothes and tell her to wear them. Tell your elders not to be buying so many boy clothes and just start buying her more girl clothes. But, if this doesn't work then let her wear boy clothes. She might change and she might not. She has the right to express herself and as the mother you should support that.


For the past few weeks, my 4year old daughter (only child at this point) has been telling me and her father that she wants to be a boy.

Specifically, she wants to wear Spiderman clothing and has shown a great interest in toy cars and other boy toys. We were visiting her cousins back East and she played with her boy cousins, much to the disappointment of her girl cousins.

Maybe I am overreacting but could she already be having ideas about whether she should be a girl or boy? Do I have a future lesbian on my hands? I have told her that she was born a girl but I have bought her some toy cars and some Spiderman stuff (no clothes, though. Gotta draw the line).

Other times, she tells me she wants to be a baby again and will actually get very upset. She doesn't want to be a "big girl." It is upsetting to see her so unhappy and I am concerned that she feels this way at such a young age.

Anyone have any advice for me?

Thanks in advance.


Chill.  She may just be playing you, because she can tell it pushes your buttons.  She may just be prattling away, letting words fall out of her mouth any old way--I do that some times.  If she is confused about her sexuality, the best thing you can do to help her is be calm and let her go.  What does she get upset/unhappy about?  Is it just when you tell her she can't be a baby or a boy?  Don't tell her, then.  Whether she believes you or not, she can't.  And I bought all of my girls trucks and building sets and let them wear whatever costumes they wanted.  Don't fuss!


I've been struggling with this same problem for awhile now with my 6 year old daughter. She tells me she is a boy and gets very upset if i make her wear girl clothes. When we go shopping for clothes she wants to go to the boys section. She always wants to look "handsome" when she gets ready for school. She also plays with boys toys, monster trucks, spiderman, superman. She will only play with barbies if she gets the boy barbies. She is very rough and tough and prefers playing with the boys. I would love to talk to someone else with this same problem. I want to nurture the person she is but im scared that if she doesnt grow out of this, things will be really rough for her. Please email me at Kwill10592@hotmail.com


I agree with some posts about not having spiderman and monster trucks in the house so it's not a choice.

However, I HATED girl clothes when I was little... HATED HATED HATED them. I remember crying my eyes out walking to school combing my hair into the boy style I preferred after my mother used hair spray to make it stay for picture day... boy was she surprised when the pix came in....

There should be a compromise... Why should she be miserable? She is a person with feeling and prefrences. Monster trucks may be extreme, but she will make better choices if they are not there to chose from.

BTW - today I am all female. I am attractive and I wear make-up, blouses and perfume. You won't see me in pumps or skirts at work, but I do pair my business slacks with pearls and bows.


I think she is 6 and you should compromise there a 5 days in a school week so let her wear what she wants for 2 days and 2 days what you want and maybe on the last day you pick either shorts and she picks the shirt. It’s not about being the boss it’s her being conferrable! All children are different some girls only like GI Joe no Barbie’s its a phase she will grow out of it but maybe be flexable.Its not going to hunt anybody!


Well i have a tom girl,soon to be 7 and she plays with boys toys,she likes wearing her clothes like the boys do.I am not a parent who likes what she does but i try telling her that other kids would tease her as it has already happend!But i do think its a part of thier own growing up with thier own personality.My daughter is very stubborn but life is about learning,sometimes its tough no matter what we as parents want for them,id prefer my daughter wore girly clothes which she does but likes boys things too.I really dont see anything wrong with it as it's a part of who they are.Sometimes trying to change who they are can be a big mistake,it could get worse later on in thier lifetime.


There are many reasons she may wish to wear boy clothes. She may actually feel that she is a boy, in which case sensitivity and understanding will be needed to help her survive childhood.
She may want to project a stronger (male) image, she may see a female in a role that she doesn't like. She may see a male in a role that she wants for herself. Sensitivity and understanding will help you examine her environment, including her own family!

Finding out the reason may help you deal with the issue. In the mean time, save the ugly spiderman stuff for the pencil case, pajamas and undies. thats how I deal with my son's desire for that hideous rubbish..
The rest of the time, she can wear boys clothes but there is no reason she can't be in chinos and a white shirt.
Also, you can buy boys colours with girls neck-lines. eg a camo tee shirt with a scoop neck. pale blue and white stripes are also charming on any kid. so is pale grey. v-neck jumpers, canvas sneakers, all will work.


pick out neutral colors for her to wear. When i was younger i was much of a tom boy and hated to wear skirts and tights; i was all about sweat pants and sweat shirts and comfortable sneakers... i eventually grew out of that.. it's a phase!


just make her


If that's what she feels comfortable wearing then let her, don't try and force your daughter to wear clothes which make her feel uncomfortable.

I'd suggest that you keep a look out for clothes that are more androgynous in nature.

Also, I don't see why her choice in clothing should be that much of a concern -- I'd be much more concerned about her arguing with you.


just let her gain about 700 pounds and make her wear toddler clothes


I agree that 6-year olds should go braless. If there is a question, perhaps a medical evaluation to see if there is a medical problem, perhaps obesity. Some 8 and 9-year olds do have the need for a bra. Failure to provide adequate support leads to very pendulous breasts which can compromise a young woman's sense of self.

Good nutrition and lots of physical activity are a good idea for everyone.


For more information on children who might be transgender or gender nonconforming (someone whose behaviors and interests -- in things such as clothing and toys -- don't match societal expectations for their biological sex), search this site (FamilyEducation) for an article called "6 Tips for Understanding and Raising a Transgender Child." Hope that helps!