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Boys, body image and six other reasons I’m kinda freaked out about having a girl

My sisters and I turned out OK, but what if
I screw it up?!


I am one of three girls. I love being a girl. Always have. My parents never treated us any differently because of our gender, especially my dad who had us baiting fish hooks, shooting guns and playing baseball in the backyard practically before we were out of diapers. The thought never crossed our minds that we couldn't do everything boys could do and as we’ve gotten older, we are all still confident, strong and happy with who we are. Needless to say, my parents did a good job. But that was a different time. Raising a daughter today seems…trickier. And it has me worried. Here’s why:

1. The internet. (I keep thinking of that creepy mom on Facebook who stalked her daughter’s classmate or the Craig’s List killer or pretty much any story the Today show runs these days).

2. Those Dove commercials about young girls and their self esteem issues and how they need workshops to tell them they’re good enough and smart enough and pretty enough.

3. The clothes. I never wore short shorts and belly-baring shirts (at least not until I went on Spring Break in college!) and now it seems like 5-year-olds are sporting this stuff.

4. Princesses. I am so not into Princesses. Granted I was a Barbie FREAK when I was younger, which isn't a whole lot different, but the princess craze just worries me. Dora I can handle....

5. The color pink. It’s just not my thing.

6. Tween girls. I was at a movie the other night and about ten 12-year-olds were sitting in front of me. They spent the entire movie giggling, texting, talking about boys then giggling -- loudly -- some more. It was truly atrocious behavior and I almost walked out (some people did!)

7. Boys. I remember what it’s like having a crush, feeling unrequited love, getting dumped. It sucks and I guess I’m already thinking about how I can protect my little girl...which I know I can’t.

8. Body image. Sometimes I say I’m fat even though I know I’m not. What if I accidentally blurt out something along those lines in front of my daughter and give her a complex? Ugh!

OK, has anyone else worried about this stuff? Do those of you with girls feel that these are issues? What are the other issues? How do you handle them?