Mum lets son wear dress to her wedding so he feels free to do what he wants
Mum-of-three Joanna Minuzzo practices gentle parenting with her children, allowing them to express who they want to be.
The 39-year-old, originally from Scotland and now living in Queensland, Australia, says she wants her kids to be ‘free to be who they want to be’.
So when her two-year-old son said he wanted to wear a dress to Joanna’s wedding, she was happy to oblige.
While she wed her partner Najee, her wee son wore a pretty blue frock while his sisters opted for matching pink numbers.
Joanna says that her gentle method of parenting has brought her closer to her children and they aren’t afraid of showing emotions or interpreting those of others.
They also know that they can come to her with their problems without fear of judgment.
Joanna’s son initially wanted to wear a top with Minnie Mouse’s face on but was then taken with his sisters’ dresses.
When he asked his mum, Joanna had said no at first. But afterwards, she asked herself why he couldn’t wear one as she could see how happy wearing a dress made him.
Their son had a choice of three outfits to wear. His options included a suit and a kilt from Scotland but he refused to wear them, falling in love with his sister’s dresses instead.
A week before the big day, Joanna borrowed a beautiful blue dress from a friend and her son was over the moon.
‘I am raising children who feel secure enough in themselves to be true to who they really are,’ said Joanna.
‘We have a generation of adults who are too afraid of being themselves because of the fear of being judged. I want my children to know that the only person’s opinion of them that matters is their own.
‘My children trust me, they can come to me when they have problems and they know I won’t judge them.’
She revealed that some people were puzzled by the outfit choice while others had said she might ‘make him gay’, something Joanna says is completely ridiculous.
The mum said she also understands that there might be a day where he no longer wants to wear girls’ clothes and she will let him guide her.
Overall, she was pleased with her big day and was especially moved by how her new husband Najee helped their son get ready.
‘It gave me chills to see the photographs of my husband helping our son get ready and cemented exactly why I fell in love with him.
‘He put the happiness of his son above everything else, he is an amazing dad, stepdad and role model. The photo reflected a truly beautiful moment between father and son.’
Joanna hopes that by allowing her children to follow their hearts and be their true selves, they will grow up to be more socially aware through not having the traditional gender stereotypes ingrained in them.
‘I don’t want my children thinking they have to conform to stereotypes that don’t serve them.
‘My son likes to wear dresses. He is two, he doesn’t even know he is a boy yet or that there is a difference between him and his sisters.
‘It’s not complicated, I don’t have to dress him in traditional boys’ clothes just because that’s the norm and acceptable.
‘He may grow out of it, he may not. Either way, it doesn’t really matter, what matters is he is happy, he is healthy and he is kind.’
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