Monday, June 14, 2010

Becoming a Sissy

I'm not sure when the whole "Sissy" thing came along.  It seems a thing of my kids generation; I mean, we did have Buffy and Jody and Sissy, but I always thought that was just her name - like Sissy Spacek(sp) - not a signifier of a role.  Today, my Ally, and lots of other girls I know, is a Sissy in the same way that I'm a Mommy.  when did this happen?  Why did this happen?  I was always Penny to Andy, or "My Sister" (among other not-so-nice names) if he were referring to me.  All of my girl friends have similar stories - not a Sissy in the bunch.

But Ally has been Sissy since the day I was pregnant with Carlos.  He knows her name, just as he knows mine and his dad's, but he as not once called her by it.  Boys don't seem to have a signifier like this - perhaps yet another example of the sexism still rampant in our society? Is there a boy version of Sissy?  I hear people occasionally calling men Bro,  but it seems in more of a peer signifier way than in a sibling signifier way.  Is this a bad thing? Is it testimony to the nurturing expectations of women/girls in our society? Is it just a name and nothing more?

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