With Halloween fast approaching, some parents are scrambling to find the best costumes for their children. But one family in Chesapeake, VA, found the perfect costume for their three-year-old son: Elsa from the Disney movie “Frozen.”
Paul Henson, 28, posted the photo of his son wearing the costume on Facebook on Sunday, Oct. 4. Caiden had picked out the costume himself. Ashley Ramage, Caiden’s mom, and Henson both voiced their support.
“Anyone that knows us, knows we generally let Caiden make his own choices,” Henson captioned the photo. “Well, he has decided on a Halloween costume. He wants to be Elsa.”
Henson said that he plans to dress up as Anna, the other princess from the film, because Caiden asked him to. The 28-year-old also told readers that they could keep their thoughts on traditional masculinity to themselves.
“Halloween is about children pretending to be their favorite characters,” Henson said of his son’s choice. “Just so happens, this week his is a princess.”
Within hours of the post, the photo had gone viral. As of Thursday morning, it had nearly 27,000 shares.
Although the picture has appeared all over the internet, it will still likely be one of the family’s cherished memories for years to come. One survey found that 24% of Americans cherished their family photos more than other valuable documents, like Social Security cards and birth certificates.
Henson said he regularly posts about his son, according to The Virginian Pilot. But “For this one instance to be blown up is unreal,” he said.
Many commenters on social media and sites that have reported on the story have been supportive and thanked Henson and Ramage for breaking down gender stereotypes.
Henson finds some of the attention a bit baffling. “It’s weird that being a good parent, and encouraging your son to be imaginative, is rewarded,” he said. “It should be second nature.”
The couple also spoke to The Huffington Post and said that they didn’t understand the double standard when it comes to little boys wanting to wear “girls'” costumes.
“Why shame him for wanting to be a princess?” Henson asked. “When little girls want to be superheroes, it’s cute. Why isn’t it the same for a little boy that wants to be a princess?”