Baby boys and girls are different, both physically and psychologically in their development. Check out the differences here.
In addition to the physical developmental differences between a boy and a girl, you may be surprised to learn that there are several psychological developmental differences too. As boys and girls grow, you’ll start to notice a number of differences in how quickly they learn and master new skills.
We’ve created a quick and handy guide for you to check out, so you can be prepared for the differences you’ll face having a baby boy compared to your experiences of having a baby girl. Of course, these are all general, as every child is different and not all conform to the norm.
This article will look at differences in the following:
- Spatial skills.
- Potty training.
Boys Are Less Emotional
People always say that girls are more emotional, and that’s because of the way they learn to read faces from an early age.
Girls will focus on faces more, meaning they learn about different expressions and emotions. Society then plays a role in this as they grow up, as girls are encouraged to express their emotions and boys are sadly sometimes still encouraged to “man up” and repress their emotions.
Label emotions, so your little boy gets used to understanding what they are and therefore able to express them.
For example, say things like, “are you upset because you can’t reach your favourite toy?” Let him know what the names of emotions are, and what behaviours go alongside these.
Boys Have Better Spatial Skills
Boys enjoy playing with building blocks, jigsaws and other problem-solving games because they’re good at it. They can work out how shapes fit much earlier than girls can.
From a very young age, boys can visualise how a shape will look when it’s rotated and therefore work out how they may fit into others.
Encourage girls to play with problem-solving games so they can work on improving their spatial skills.
Although things are slowly progressing, we still live in a society where stereotypical behaviour says boys should play with trucks and girls should play with dolls.
Studies show that boys actually prefer playing with dolls and toys with faces (my baby boy is more proof!) much more than they like playing with trucks and cars.
Girls and boys learn from a young age which toys they are “supposed” to play with, based on influences from early pre-school.
Give your boy plenty of options when it comes to toys, and widen his horizon. Let him know it’s perfectly acceptable to play with dolls just as it is to play with cars.
Boys Are More Active
Testosterone in the brain makes a baby boy more active, so you’ll find that he’ll be much more restless and fidgety than your friend’s little girl.
You’ll find that changing your boy’s nappy can be a struggle sometimes, as he wants to wriggle around on the changing mat.
Encourage boys and girls to be active, with designated playtime where they can burn off some of that stored energy.
Boys Are More Aggressive
From as early as six months old, boys show more frustration and anger that girls do. Testosterone plays a role in boys being more aggressive, which can result in hitting and throwing things.
They are also more vulnerable to neuropsychiatric disorders, especially when in the womb, which can result in developmental issues and anger showing as they grow up.
Enforce the “no hitting” rule with your little boy from an early age. Encourage him to speak about his feelings of anger instead of responding with physical violence or shouting.
How quickly your little one starts walking really comes down to individuality, but there is an expectation that boys will start walking a little earlier than girls.
A regular saying is “girls are talkers while boys are walkers”, but the more you encourage your little boy to get walking and build up his muscles to do so, the quicker he should start moving.
Give your little one plenty of tummy time to build up stomach muscles, and be sure they’re not spending too much time restricted inside a car seat or pram.
Sticking with the “girls are talkers while boys are walkers” saying, little girls usually master words and phrases quicker than boys. Again, this does come down to how much language they’re exposed to as to how quickly they will listen and repeat things to you.
Always spend time talking with your little one. Getting them used to hearing the same words will encourage them to start mimicking the sounds that they hear.
Girls are much quicker at mastering the potty than boys are. The difference can be between six and 12 months, so don’t worry too much if your little boy is taking longer than expected to ditch those nappies for good.
Introduce the potty and make it fun using a reward chart for encouragement. Remember that night time takes much longer to master than day time, so focus on your little boy going nappy-free during the day first.
Makes No Difference
While there are natural differences between how a baby boy and girl develops and grows, remember that biology doesn’t determine the kind of daughter or son that your child will be.
Every child is different, with a unique child development story. They all hit developmental milestones when they’re ready. Don’t panic if other kids are mastering things earlier than yours. Give them time to learn, and offer lots of encouragement along the way.