Purpose/functions

Gender roles are very important as they display our personalities and tend to teach us lessons about community roles (Martin, 2005). From the article “Remember Storm”, Witterick and Stocker reveal the confusion generated by children when parents decide to keep their genders secret. For example, Jazz (as discussed in the article) is undecided about the color of clothes to wear, and whether to keep his hair long or short.

Advantages

By enhancing gender-neutral upbringing on the children, parents can expose their children to broader dimensions of gender-types alongside providing them with the ability to examine their communal roles without being judgmental. For instance, exposing children to a variety of toys and giving them the opportunity to choose those that they like most provide them with the opportunity to widen their skill and interests (Martin, 2005). Some of these skills could be far much beyond what the society expects of a boy or girl. From the article, Diana (mother of Jesse) talks of her son who preferred cradles to toys contrary to the preference of most of his peers, and this makes her believe that child gender-neutral upbringing is a vital parenting style, particular for parents who want their children to grow from the perspectives of gender equality.

Potential drawbacks

From the article, Witterick allows her sons Jazz and Kio to dress up either from the girl’s or boy’s closet. The undifferentiated dressing styles make people cast major doubts over the sanity of Jazz and Kio because to them, children at such age should be able to distinguish male clothes from females’. In other words, the members of the society are the major drawbacks to the gender-neutral parenting style since they believe that allowing children to choose their gender is dangerous to their childhood upbringing and may result in the adoption of certain antisocial behaviors.

It is not possible to raise a child in the society without the influence of gender roles. The influence follows the notion that some roles like heavy manual labor only fit men and may be undesirable for women (Martin, 2005). It also true from the reading that different gender roles are core to human life because such roles define the different social responsibilities between men and women.