Raising Super Girls With Super Self-Esteem

Raising daughters today is a huge responsibility and one I don’t take lightly. There’s so much more peer pressure and so many more images and messages bombarding them today from the media and a great deal of what our kids glean from pop culture is a digitally-enhanced fantasy world. Miss C may only be in 4th grade but already I have picked up on talk of “Mom, does this look OK?” as she surveys herself  in the mirror and “Mom, my friend thinks she’s fat!”

Playing sports and being active in Girl Scouts has helped both my girls be a part of something larger than themselves and activities that they can be proud of, as well as make new friends and recognize and appreciate their own unique talents. My mother instilled in me that I could do anything I set my mind to and the words “I can’t” were pretty much banished from my house growing up. Still, as an adult I have my doubts about my self-worth, my skills as a mother and wife, and my own looks. So often, we are our own worse critic, and this seems especially true for women.

A few years ago, when Miss C was just in 1st grade, her teacher told me that she needed to work on her confidence. Instantly I felt that as her mother I had failed her. Today her confidence has grown and I don’t doubt that working with her daily on recognizing her talents (in soccer and beyond) and own uniqueness has played a large role in how she feels about herself.

As a mom to two amazing little girls I am very proud to join Dove as a Dove Champion blog partner for the Dove Self-Esteem Movement! I hope you’ll join me in spending an hour during Dove Self-Esteem Weekend October 21-23 on a self-esteem building activity with the special girls in your life. I’ll be telling you more about my plans with my girls next week, but in the mean time there are some wonderful resources on the Dove Self-Esteem movement website. I’ve already downloaded the guide for self-esteem for mothers and daughters age 8 to 11 and the True You workbook for Miss C and I to look at together.

Here are some eye-opening statistics about girls and beauty and how it relates to self-confidence:

• Only 4% of women around the world consider themselves beautiful (up from 2% in 2004)
• Only 11% of girls globally are comfortable using the word beautiful to describe themselves
• 72% of girls feel tremendous pressure to be beautiful
• 80% of women agree that every woman has something about her that is beautiful but do not see their own beauty
• More than half (54%) of women globally agree that when it comes to how they look, they are their own worst beauty critic

SOURCE: Dove Research: The Real Truth About Beauty: Revisited

Let me know in the comments if you’re joining me and why you think this is an important cause and be sure to visit the online pledge map to register your activity!

7 comments

  1. Kathleen Conner says:

    Wow, I think this is so important. We need the women of the world to be more secure in themselves, and then we can change the world (and make it a gentler place).

  2. Ernestine says:

    Thank you my special daughter that my words had an impact on you.
    Oh yes – on my own most of my life and now in these later years – I can’t
    was never and still is not a part of my vocabulary.
    I am proud of you as the mother of my two youngest granddaughter’s
    Oh, how I want the years to see their special talents and yours develop 🙂

  3. Jessica @FoundtheMarbles says:

    Though I am raising boys I see the difference daily between a child who is born with an innate sense of self-esteem and one who is not. What a terrific cause!

  4. Raquel says:

    What an amazing post! As a mother of 2 girls myself I already realized the importance of setting a good example, I had not however put to much thought into how important the whole body image thing is.I want to raise them as confident women who are happy with themselves and how they look.On a daily basis I do not always think about the way I talk to myself and my body image, like the saying goes; ‘Action speaks louder then words’.

  5. Daniel Harvey says:

    I am a mother of 3 and I have been taking care of them without my other’s help because I am awa from her. Glad my children grew good kids. I am still protecting them.

  6. Ember says:

    I am a new mother, with a 9 month old daughter. This is something that I have worried about myself. I want my daughter and future children to understand that they are beautiful and never to judge themselves based on the worldly standards. I am glad to see this kind of initiative. I know I am late to seeing this, but I am new to the blogging world. Even so, knowing this kind of movement, towards stronger self-esteem, makes me feel like my children have a chance to realize how truly amazing they are. It gives me hope that I have help while I get the hang of this parenting thing. 🙂

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