Monday, 17 May 2010
Their future happiness starts here, with us.
I am scared for my two daughters future, no denying that, there are plenty of things to be afraid of. But what about the little things? the things that i can actually do something about, or at least help with; self image.
I look at my daughters and see the most beautiful things in the world. I tell my almost 3 year old how amazingly gorgeous she is every single day and she believes it, for now. But at what point will she start to doubt it? at what stage will she view herself in the mirror and notice things about herself that she isn't happy with? I have no idea, i honestly hope it never happens, but it will, because that's the curse of being a girl, being a woman and being human.
I am a hypocrite.. although i see beauty in everything and everyone else and campaign madly (at least to anyone who will listen!) that natural beauty is always best, that everyone is perfect because beauty is in the eye of the beholder, we are all beautiful to whoever loves us, i am a hypocrite because quite honestly to me, my own face and my own body brings me down on a daily basis, i don't let my daughter see this break down, i hopefully never will, But she hears it all.. she hears my fiance, her dad telling me how beautiful i am and my immediate response of 'no, i'm not.' i do it automatically, there isn't a pause to consider my little two year olds listening ears, no, it's straight out, my own unbending belief that i'm not good enough, not pretty enough.
What sort of an example am i setting here? to her i'm perfect, i'm her mother so of course she thinks that way, so what am i teaching her? that perfection isn't good enough. It's sad, it fills me with guilt all the time, i have failed on that count so so many times, she's almost 3 and how many times has she heard me putting myself down? how many times have i said 'my boobs aren't big enough' 'i'm too skinny' 'i'm ugly' 'i wish i looked like i did before i had kids' 'i wish my legs were firmer' 'my teeth straighter' 'i wish i didn't have these ugly bags under my eyes' Too many times. Once would be too many, but i do all this on a daily basis, i don't even think about it anymore, it just comes out, when i'm getting dressed i see my body and immediately feel down about it and out come all the self hating statements about what i see. When i get my little make-up out and my daughter asks if she can wear some too, what do i say? 'No sweetie, you're beautiful, mummy needs make-up because i'm ugly'
I cringe when i think of all the times i've done this, it's setting a bad example, it doesn't matter how many times i tell her she's beautiful because thats not a lesson she needs, we can all see beauty in others, She needs to see that i find myself beautiful so that she can do the same. It's hard but i am going to do everything in my power to change what i say, what i feel about myself and most importantly what she hears.
It needs to change, It's my job as her mother to do everything i can to give her a happy life, so this is what i'll do, I'll concentrate on the good, not the bad.
Mother's of boys.. your job is even tougher! there are too many men out there who believe the image of false women on TV is how they are supposed to look, too many men who believe that all women wear fake tan, have breasts that defy gravity and weigh less than a child, with perfect hair and perfect teeth and that they as men will of course get a woman like this no problem no matter what they themselves look like because it happens that way on TV all the time! lets show them some real beauty, lets bring them up to be the perfect sort of man who isn't attracted to falseness, the sort of man who looks for something real, Someone who is beautiful to HIM not to the rest of the world, Lets bring our boys up to respect women and not see them as objects who need to look perfect constantly, let's bring them up to be Real Men.
All you wonderful mummy's out there.. next time you view yourself in the mirror, don't put yourself down, Look at the GOOD parts, see yourself in the beautiful way that the people who love you do, we are all our worst critics so what we see Isn't what others do. Lets set our children on the right path now, the media is full enough with images of unattainable false beauty let's not add to that, we are all perfect how we are, with all our mummy tummy's and stretch marks and beautiful reminders of the 9 months we grew our babies within us. Lets celebrate our beauty not beat ourselves up about the little imperfections we cannot change.
The future happiness of our daughters depend on us, we are the only ones who can change it, let's not bring the next generation of the women to believe they aren't good enough, aren't pretty enough, lets make them believe they are PERFECT just the way they are, skinny, fat, tall, short, sagging skin, wobbly bums and all!