Childrearing

Twinning: My 6-Year-Old Son Apparently Has To ‘Man Up’ For His Halloween Costume

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halloween costume for twinsHaving twins can be the most amazing experience of your life. It can also cause you to wake up in the morning wishing you were someone else. Twinning offers an honest depiction of life with twins from a mom who tries to keep things somewhere in the middle.

My recent trip to buy Halloween costumes with my 6-year-old twins went pretty much like it did last year. We all stood in front of the party store’s “Wall of Costumes,” my daughter picked a princess costume, and my son just looked. My daughter tried on her costume, and my son was still looking. He couldn’t find anything he really liked.

“Do you want to be Batman?” I asked.

“No.”

“How about this green guy? He looks cool.”

“Nope.”

“How about a football player?”

“Uh….nah.”

We had this same conversation last year, and it ended when I chose a Transformers costume for him, because he had some transformers at home and sort of liked them.

I was beginning to see that is that it’s a lot harder finding costumes for boys than it is for girls. There’s just not a whole lot to choose from when it comes to boys’ costumes. If your little guy doesn’t like superheroes or sports, he’s basically screwed. His other not-so-awesome options are dressing up as a stereotypical male professional (fireman, policeman, racecar driver), or something bloody and frightening (which I’m not allowing until he’s older.)

It’s not as if my son is anything but your average 6-year-old boy. He’s just not interested in sports or superheroes, and he hasn’t seen a lot of movies. I actually thought this year would be different because Nick wanted to be one of the Lego ninjas from the cartoon Ninjago. It’s a popular cartoon so I didn’t think getting him a costume would be a problem. Then I discovered that Lego doesn’t make licensed Ninjago costumes, and found out too late that some stores had a limited supply of “fake Ninjago” costumes. You can buy them online for $60 (thanks anyway) or make your own (seriously thanks anyway!)

Buying Halloween costumes for my twins used to be fun. For their first Halloween, I dressed them up in pink and blue octopus costumes. (So cute it could be illegal.) They were cuddly black cats the next year, and then a cowboy and a cowgirl when they were two years old. When they were three, they wanted to be Super Why and Princess Presto from the cartoon Super Why! That was the last year my twins dressed for Halloween as a pair. Sigh.

When they were four, my daughter was in full-on-princess mode and she wanted to be Cinderella. As toddlers, boys can dress up as lions, bats, dogs, and Winnie the Pooh, but I noticed that as early as preschool, these “cutesy” costumes were being ditched for Star Wars characters, soldiers, vampires and Power Rangers. Nick didn’t have anything he really wanted to be, so I eventually just ordered a Spiderman costume for him. When he was four, Nick hadn’t seen Star Wars or Power Rangers, and he didn’t know what soldiers or vampires were. Were these all things a 4-year-old should know?

This year in front of the Wall of Costumes, I talked Nick into being a plain ninja. He didn’t make a fuss about it, and even showed a little bit of interest in the costume when he saw the ninja stars on the belt. But still, I felt bad.

As usual, a talk with my mom helped me put things into perspective. I asked her if she ever thought Halloween costumes were more limited for my brother than for me when we were little and she said, “I don’t really remember. If either of you didn’t like what they had at the drugstore, you went as a hobo.” And just like that, a plain old ninja seems like a pretty amazing costume.

(photo: Rob Hainer/ Shutterstock)