I watched your daughter run around today. I loved her sweet smile and listened to her infectious laugh. She was one of those kids that you’d just love to take home with you–especially since I’d love to have a girl someday. I smiled when I saw her earrings and told my friend how cute her clothes were. I saw her blow kisses as my son told her goodbye…and I listened with disappointment as you proceeded to tell your one year old daughter that boys are bad.
Now even though you said this right in front of me, I thought about just brushing it off. I’m sure it was an innocent comment and you didn’t think before you said it. But some of the most damaging things can start that way. Some of the things that stick with kids the longest are things you didn’t think they even paid attention to.
You don’t know my son. You don’t know that his favorite thing is snuggling. You don’t know that he tells me how beautiful I am without make up, but still helps me curl my eyelashes because he knows I like to. You don’t know that even though he’s only five, he opens doors for me and comforts me when I’m sad. Or that some mornings I wake up to him stroking my face and smiling at me. You’ve never listened to the enthusiasm in his voice when he explains his video games to me. You don’t know that he loves buying me flowers. Or that he’s afraid of ladybugs. And zombies.
Now I’m not the mother of a daughter, but I am a daughter. And it seems to me a little counterproductive to teach our girls that all boys are bad. That’s not going to keep them away from boys. Nothing is going to do that. If we’re telling them that boys are just all bad then aren’t they more likely to settle? Why look for something good when you’re taught it doesn’t exist? Some boys are bad…just as some girls are bad. Some people are bad. I think we should be basing our judgements off character and not gender. To make a statement that 50% of the population is “bad” because they weren’t born female is just absurd.
So why not teach her how to respect herself without disrespecting others in the process? Teach her to wait for the boy who will snuggle with her and tell her she’s beautiful. One that will open doors, comfort her, and buy her flowers. The boy who will share his hobbies and his fears with her. I intend to do my job and raise my son to do all of these things so please do yours and teach your little girl to keep her eye open for someone like him when she gets older because contrary to popular belief, nice boys do exist.
EDIT: She contacted me so here’s part 2 of the story