Dave and Joshua returned home from
The girls who had parents on the trip interacted with them cordially and frequently. If they saw their parents in the hotel lobby, for example, they would chat together for a moment. Some of them even went on a few amusement park rides together before going their separate ways. In stark contrast, the boys who had parents on the trip studiously ignored them. If the parents compelled communication, the boys responded in monosyllables or grunts, accompanied by rolling eyes.
Dave's amazement at this striking difference was solidified by the case of a guy who ran out of food money and did not ask his father for more. As Dave put it, "He would rather go hungry than ask his father for money!" The father found out about the situation from other channels. My guess: a girl told her parent, who told the guy's father. After all, none of the boys told their parents - it had to have been a girl!
As we ate supper tonight, I asked Joshua about these differences. His response:
That's the way it always is. It was the same way last year in
As Dave and I pushed Joshua to think about why this is the case, he eventually agreed with our suggestion that perhaps the guys subconsciously feel a need to demonstrate their independence. They can't risk looking childish in any way. The girls, on the other hand, may not feel as much pressure to assert their autonomy. Or maybe they don't equate publicly socializing with their parents as a sign of immaturity or childishness. Is this an example of cultural conditioning to meet particular gender expectations? Is it an example of girls having achieved more sophisticated psychological or social maturity at this age than guys? Is it something else? What do you think?