4/27/2014

The "princess-ification" of girls




This has got to stop right now ! I mean it ! Yeah, you.....hey, YOU ! Raising your daughter to think she can be a princess when she grows up is sending her the wrong message. Princesses are helpless bimbos, always stuck in some silly situation, who have to be rescued by making friends, finding themselves, acting adorably cute, or finding true love from the prince. Princesses value looks and pretty dresses over strong character or real life skills such as intelligence, hard work, integrity, or kindness. Princesses think it's all about them.....that the world will do their bidding if they are just pretty enough. 

Case in point #1 : Extended family welcomed first female baby in generations . Much arguing ensued over the all-pink, all-princess-y toys one side of the fam insisted on gifting said child as it was growing up. Child now pre-teen, is spoiled unrealistic self-centered brat. What are you teaching a young person about role models when the only options you provide are stuffed unicorns, tiaras, magic fairy wands, tea party sets, make-up, feather boas, and pink dress-up dresses? Whose fantasy of little girlhood is being served - yours, or your child's ? Whatever happened to "Doctor Barbie", toy horses, farm sets, tricycles, sand boxes with shovels and spades, doll houses, rocking horses, zoo animals, play houses, cowboys/cowgirls, building blocks, art and craft supplies, toy cars, games, puppets - the list goes on and on. In colors other than, and in addition to,  pink?

Case in point #2: I am now teaching the first wave of teens who were raised this way. Young women aged 14-18 these days do not know how to : look an adult in the eye, ask a question, wait their turn, explain something, talk about the subject matter at hand or their own lives, problem solve, take initiative for anything - without simpering and acting coyly babyish. On a 3 year old, this has been viewed as cute, and encouraged. On a 17 year old it is not functional. 

The princessification of America is what has created the whole "Bridezilla" phenomenon. 

You may think "feminism" means a bunch of strident lesbians shouting about bring down the man. Like anything depicted in the media, this is a caricatured stereotype and unfair to both lesbians and women who are straight. Feminism is a social movement that historically allowed women in the USA to vote, have access to their own money, a bank account in their own name not their husband's, and pushes now for equality in the workplace and health care. 

Think about your own life and those of your friends.....how many of you have learned, maybe the hard way as I have, that ultimately you have to take care of yourself - not depend on anyone else? How many of you have learned that to keep a job, manage your finances, keep your family together, and your life going - you have to have adult social and problem solving skills? Where are children / teens going to learn them, if not from you ? Everyone has to function in the real world, in real world ways. I am not saying burst little girls fantasies....I am saying, provide them with a range of  role models, skills and options. Encourage them in age appropriate interactions with you. Have them practice speaking to adults, shaking hands, looking peopkle in the eyes, and speaking clearly not coyly. young girls and young boys need to learn to have confidence, speak for themselves, and trust their own minds. If you don't shape them in the way you want them to do this, someone else will.

1 comment:

  1. Brilliant post about today's young women. I couldn't agree more!

    ReplyDelete