10 life lessons to teach your daughter
I recently wrote a list of 10 life lessons I’m teaching my son and I felt it’s time to write 10 life lessons teach your daughter. As most women, I’ve faced different obstacles in life that boys and men will never face and I wanted to address those things in this list. In my list for sons I directed much of it on emotion regulation and letting them know emotions are both natural and managable. This isn’t the main problem for women and girls since we have a culture of teaching girls emotions and regulating them. Instead the list for daugthers are more focused on wellbeing, prioritizing yourself, being content with yourself and not letting anyone else tell you your place in any way.
Girls are often taught to be selfless, caring for others before yourself, to be moderate, not too loud, not taking too much space and present herself in a way that appeals to boys and men. This limits girls in how to behave, to be suppressive, adapt themselves to others and talking negativley about themselves (e.g. fat talk).
I once read a really interesting observational study about teenage girls in school and how they behaved, dressed and talked in order to be a “good woman”. The main goal was to be desireable for the boys. Being a “good woman” meant being modest, not too much, not too little in most aspects. For example, you should be pretty, you should reveal a bit of skin (otherwise you’re a “nun”) but not too much (then you become a “whore” or a “slut”). In other words, being a girl and a woman means walking a fine line and also means many suppress themselves to fit the mold of a “good woman”.
The good thing is that we as parents can make an impact on our children and teach them the life skills we didn’t learn in our childhood. Being aware of how we behave, think and talk to our children we can teach our daugthers to take responsibility for their wellbeing, don’t accept bad treatment and reach for the stars.
What would be on your list of 10 values you want your daughter to know?
This is my list of 10 life lessons I would want to my daugthers to know and understand:
- It doesn’t matter what others think and say about you, what matters is what you think and say about yourself. Understand your greatness.
- You’re always responsible for yourself and your wellbeing, noone else. Make sure to always prioritize your wellbeing and happiness.
- Your body, your rules. Other bodies, their rules.
- If you have an opinion, you should know why you are of that opinion.
- Be clear of what you want and think and what you don’t want. That way others don’t have to guess.
- You’ll meet others that won’t believe in you, don’t let it affect you in reaching your dreams, whatever that may be.
- Question everything but your own gut feeling.
- Say what you mean and mean what you say.
- Wherever you are and what happens you’re always welcome home.
- You’re amazing and always loved. Never forget that!