Taking Responsibility for Raising Confident and Unique Children

Evelyn

I totally let my daughter wear whatever she wants!  I don’t care what it is, as long as it is weather appropriate.  Some people think I’m crazy. I don’t really care, lol.

She has gone out in tutu’s, mixed match shoes, clashing prints, etc.  And each and every time she felt proud of the outfit she chose. Mia is six years old.  She is a confident child who already knows what she likes and dislikes, especially in her “fashion”.  She is strong, opinionated, and feisty as hell. But she is also compassionate and kind and accepting of everyone, just the way they are.  She has never learned to judge others or expect that their appearance should fit a certain mold.

When we go out in public she comments on other people, especially if they stand out.  Mia has often pointed out someone’s “cool” pink hair or their unique clothing. You see, Mia is a little girl who loves everyone equally and believes that everyone is beautiful.  What an amazing world we’d live in if we all saw each other through her eyes!

We, women especially, are brought up with lots of self-doubt and questioning.  We were shown as little girls that we need to fit in, we should dress a certain way, we shouldn’t be too loud, we should be sensitive, and we shouldn’t bring too much attention to ourselves.  So, as we grow, we learn to place judgement on others (who don’t follow those “rules”) and comment on everything: from their appearance to their life choices. As if it’s any of our business?!?!?

When I was growing up, I often heard that I shouldn’t wear tight fitting clothing, short skirts, tube tops, make-up, etc. because it could send the wrong message.  Damn that made me self-conscious!! I questioned every outfit I put on, especially when I got to the age when I started dating. I questioned myself. I questioned my behavior.  I didn’t want to be seen as something that I wasn’t. I didn’t want people to judge me. If only I had learned that my clothing doesn’t determine my worth. And the way I look doesn’t determine the amount of respect I deserve.

We may not be able to change the world immediately, but I certainly plan on starting, right in my own home.  I will teach my children that they deserve respect, regardless of the clothes they put on. The respect they command from others will come from their attitude, behavior, and the manner in which they conduct themselves.  I will continue to teach them that everyone is different and that we should love them anyway. I will help them to understand that the more we open ourselves to knowing people, no matter how different they are, the more we grow to love one another.  

So, to my baby girl, Mia Rae, shine on!  You light up every room you walk into. Everyone who knows you, loves you.  Not because you’re cute (even though you totally are), and not because you dress a certain way, but because you’re genuine and kind.  And that matters more than anything else! Keep being original. Keep being strong. Speak positively about others. You make this world better, every single day….

 

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