The Problem with Pink

Today, my boys’ school is celebrating Breast Cancer Awareness Day by allowing the children to break the dress code if they bring in $2 and wear some pink. I assume the $2 will go to Susan B. Komen Foundation. It didn’t say in the weekly letter home, and my kids thought “it might be going to some hospitals for taking care of people.”

Breast Cancer Awareness Day poses a problem in a household full of boys who still don’t like girls. It’s a house wear the color of a thing matters. My five year old loves anything red. My ten year olds wants everything to be brown. My eight year old will tolerate any color… but pink.

We have no pink, and my “we can just get a pink pin or ribbon” was met yesterday with a resounding and unanimous, “No!”

“How about socks no one can really see?”


“It’s not worth it,” said my third grader, who typically dances with joy on Break the Dress Code Days. “Really mom, there’s no difference.”

“I just thought you’d want to wear your Falcons jersey.” Again, he usually does flips of excitement for the chance to wear that to school.

“I’ll wear it on Sunday.”

“It’s red at least. That’s close to pink.”

“On Sunday.”

So I tried to appeal to their sense of right and wrong, their caring for others. I talked about what Breast Cancer Awareness day was all about. I told them about all the people they know who have had it.

“I’m still not wearing pink.”

So, a few minutes before piling everyone into the car today, I stuck $2 in each of their backpacks. I’ll break the dress code, and of course, wear a little pink.


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