"Sam was ridiculed for being a boy with nail polish. They called him names and told him to take it off. This lasted the entire day."
Samuel Leighton-Dore

24 Oct 2018 - 10:14 AM  UPDATED 24 Oct 2018 - 10:19 AM

A father of three has written a heartfelt series of tweets defending his 5-year-old son's right to wear nail polish.

Aaron Gouveia, who blogs about parenthood from his home in Massachusetts, took to social media to share his frustration after his son was shamed at daycare for wearing bright pink nail polish.

"This is my son, Sam. He's 5. And today he learned how sh**ty and harmful #ToxicMasculinity is," the dad wrote in the first of a series of tweets.

He continued: "My rage meter is spiking right now so excuse me if this is a little raw but there are some things I want to say about BS (sic) gender norms."

Gouveia went on to explain that his son is a "rough and tumble" so-called "boy's boy" who happens to enjoy carrying purses and wearing his nails painted bright.

"Sam has a collection of purses because he likes to carry things around. And he loves to have his nails painted bright colours because he thinks they 'look beautiful'. And he's right - they are beautiful."

However, the father revealed that Sam's classmates weren't so quick to accept his red nails, making fun of him for being different.

"So he proudly wore his red nail polish to kindergarten this morning because Sam has absolutely no concept of nail polish only being for girls or reason to think anyone would possibly have a problem with beautiful nails," the father wrote.

He added: "But his classmates did have a problem. A big one. Sam was ridiculed for being a boy with nail polish. They called him names and told him to take it off. This lasted the entire day."

When his wife collected Sam from school, the 5-year-old was reportedly devastated.

"He called me at work, his words barely decipherable through the sobs, and I told him nothing those kids say matters," Gouveia tweeted.

"That his nails are BADASS! And the only thing that matters is whether he likes his nails."

It was then that Sam turned to his father and said: "Daddy, I want mummy to take off the nail polish so they don't make fun of me."

The dad then explained that the kids at daycare were "just jealous" of his nails; encouraging him to wear them even brighter the next day.

Taking a swipe at "intolerant parents" for passing on unhelpful messages of toxic masculinity to their children, the blogger ultimately allowed his son to paint his nails in solidarity - selecting a neutral tone called 'main squeeze'.

"Intolerant parents and their offspring scored a minor victory today, but they won't win the war," he said.

"I know that because the Sams of the world aren't going to suffer this bullsh*t anymore."

"Of that I have no doubt."

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