When it comes to Halloween costumes, all bets are off.
If someone can dress up as a bumblebee or dinosaur, who is to say a princess is off limits? And in 2022, these costumes are no longer only just for girls.
But when one mum was faced with her five-year-old son choosing a colourful dress for this year's costume, she was left feeling conflicted.
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So, naturally, she turned to Reddit for advice. Luckily for the little boy, strangers rallied around him?, telling her she should not only let him, but reminded him anyone's issue with this was their own problem.
"We went to the store to pick up Halloween costumes for my kids the other day and my five-year-old boy asked for a princess dress... Now this doesn't bother me at all but I did want him to look at all of the costumes first," the post began.
"We went through and looked at all the other costumes but he still wanted the dress. I looked him in the eye and I told him that that's fine if he wanted the dress, but that he needed to understand that people might think he looks like a girl and asked him if he was OK with that. He said no and quickly chose a superhero boys costume."
While she said she didn't want him to think it was bad for boys to like princesses, she asked if she was right to redirect him in case he was bullied.?
The resounding response on Reddit? Let him dress as he wishes. ?
"It's surprising how little people actually care - especially on Halloween. ESPECIALLY on a five-year-old! Girls are 'cool' for being super heroes. Boys are the ones told it's not 'normal' when they want to be a princess," said one mum of a teenage boy who also wasn't constrained by gendered costumes.
"Likely it's just a sweet five-year-old wanting to be a princess because he thinks they're cool. It's adults who make it deeper than that," she added.
"If it were me, I'd go back to my son (I have two boys too) and tell him that if people think he's a girl - who cares! It doesn't matter if someone mistakes you for a girl or a dinosaur or whatever - that's the point of Halloween. He should wear what he wants," agreed another.
"We got some great advice from a teacher for a similar situation. It went something like this: 'That's great! Let's get you a dress! But just so you understand, not all kids know that dresses are for both girls and boys, so we need to help them understand'. Frame it as a problem with the other kids and not with your kid," suggested another.
"You should have just said, 'I love it! and bought the dress. If he wanted to be a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, would you have said, 'People are going to think you look like a reptile?'," advised another.
However not everyone agreed, with some saying she did the right thing.
"No, you got it just right. Other kids would have given him a mountain of s*** for wearing a dress and it likely would've wrecked his Halloween. Is that right or fair? No, but it's the reality of putting a five-year-old boy in a dress as a Halloween costume," commented one person.