The princess dilemma.

You shouldn’t pick on little girls for liking princesses and pink and all of that other girly crap because it creates unrealistic expectations or bad body views or a sense that they need someone to come save them. I constantly see it under attack and as the current thing that is horrible for your daughter and what will ruin her.

As a mom of only one girl, and three boys, I don’t spend an overly large part of my day on princesses. While Bella might love them, and yes, she’s very firmly in the Disney princess stage, they don’t rule our house. Do you know what does? Superheroes. Even the two year old has a deep love and appreciation for the Avengers.

So lets take a moment to look at superheroes instead. Most teach boys that they need to be big, strong, and tough. A lot of times they start as someone timid, weak, nerdy, that no girl would ever want. Then something happens that completely changes them – a lot of times to almost unrecognizable – and they are suddenly big, muscley, able to beat other people up, and all of the girls suddenly want them. Even the nerdiest and smallest of them all – Spiderman – starts as weak and scrawny and laughable, then after the spider bite he has muscles, no longer needs glasses, and is full of confidence in himself. None of these things are brought on by things that they themselves did, or if they were, it was always some sort of freak accident. That’s not even touching on the other world superheroes who boys want to be but could never actually be since these dudes aren’t even human. While superheroes do teach boys some deeper issues like good and evil and how to handle power, deep down, under that it promotes that they can’t be happy with themselves how they are. Nothing that they can do can change that. You can never become a superhero on your own – skip Batman and IronMan as I can guarantee that your son will probably never be a billionaire orphan with control of a huge company to be able to design and create gadgets and suits that will give them the illusion of powers – you need some outside mystical, freak, alien accident/trauma to happen to you.

Please explain to me again how princesses are bad for little girls to like and how they create unrealistic expectations of life and self-image issues. Start your tirade against princesses over and include superheroes for little boys and get back to me. Until then remember, it’s not just toys, media, and society that raises your child, you have the biggest impact and your child is going to take his or her cues from you. You want them to be strong and confident in themselves and their body – then YOU need to show them how to be those things. Yes, media and peers play a large role in your child’s life but you shouldn’t let that be a safety net for issues that you yourself don’t know how to handle or as a blame-all for the bad or negative things.

Quit blaming princesses for all that is wrong with little girls today or even your own shortcomings. Blaming fiction or a color is just a cop out. Enjoy them as they are, something to help you or your child escape the real world for a brief moment. Something that helps them build their imagination. Something to just enjoy.

the dreamers….

heroes copy

“My own heroes are the dreamers, those men and women who tried to make the world a better place than when they found it, whether in small ways or great ones. Some succeeded, some failed, most had mixed results… but it is the effort that’s heroic, as I see it. Win or lose, I admire those who fight the good fight.”

– George R.R. Martin

March 27th Writing ALM prompt