… or something like that. Laura did an interesting post on her blog about her daughter and her beauty. Please go and read it.
I have thought about this a lot since we chatted about this topic a short while back and I have found that I actually have quite a bit to say on this subject. Most of the mom’s felt the same as Laura did and were trying to focus their pretty daughters on their other good traits. Trying to downplay their natural beauty because they didn’t want their children to measure their worth by their looks alone. I do also prescribe to that, I wouldn’t want to be measured by others by my physical beauty alone – Lord knows I would not live up to what is accepted as beautiful in this day and age… But if I am honest society puts a great deal of emphasis on physical beauty and we all feel immense pressure to live up to what it is that society buys into. And if you think I’m wrong there just look at the multi billion dollar weight loss industry, all the “Banters” out there, the anti aging creams and so on and so forth…
Now that I am a mother to a what is shaping up to be beautiful girl child, I too need to figure out how to teach her the balance of being joyful and proud of both her physical and mental traits. But this is more than just about Gemma as a girl, why do I feel that we are more concerned about teaching balance to our daughters than we are to our sons? My son is also really good looking, everyone comments on how handsome/good looking he is so essentially I need to teach both my children to find the value inside themselves that is more than just what is to be found on the outside.
But is allowing them to be proud of how they look that wrong? It has been scientifically proven that people that are good looking get better reception from others and are at an advantage. This is not something new, it is an inherently human trait that we gravitate towards those who are more beauteous/good looking. As a child my parents focused a lot on my non physical traits. I was told I was beautiful but my mind and my wit were much more appreciated growing up. I lot of emphasis was (and still is) placed on my weight and control thereof. As a result I believe that I am more of a “plain jane” and don’t have any natural physical beauty. If someone tells me I am beautiful or highlights a physicality that attracts them to me, I get uncomfortable and don’t know how to accept that compliment. I want my kids to to take pride in their appearance. I want them to believe that they are fearfully and wonderfully made. That they are gorgeous. Inside and OUTSIDE.
I don’t want them to take advantage of the fact that they are good looking though. But I do want them to celebrate it. In a healthy balanced manner. I don’t want them to be like I am as an adult incapable of accepting a compliment about their outer beauty because I tried so hard to focus them on their inner goodness only.
I don’t have the answers, but I do know that I am going to try and teach my kids balance in all things as much as I can.