I'm curious what others' reactions are to the article: Princess pedestal: How many girls are on one?.
I am the mother of a toddler boy, and have several playgroups with other moms and toddlers of mixed genders. We love to learn and observe the similarities and differences between the genders (as well as other characteristics, but this is the topic for now!). It is impossible to not notice the over-abundance of princess paraphernalia in every shopping mall, grocery store, convenience store...it's omnipresent!
Yes, it is difficult to raise either gender, as you want them both to be independent, intelligent, self-soothing, open-minded, grateful, curious, happy, caring, empathetic, smart, loving, socially adept... the list goes on and on. You don't want girls being obsessive over only dolls, just as you don't want boys to be obsessive about only trucks. And, this is just the gender-stereotyped toys, of course. My opinion: it's not the doll or truck that is the problem, it's the "obsessiveness" that is the problem, as you want your children to have a variety of interests, although they will naturally gravitate towards certain toys and activities.
There are differences in the genders that our playgroup have observed, even from a young age. It's been interesting to watch and learn (we're all first time moms, and this is fascinating to us!). I was particularly interested in the idea of "Princess Parenting", as I have seen this often with the girls in our group, as well as playgrounds, the mall, etc. I don't want to step on anyone's parenting toes, but has this princess-thing gone too far? Where is the boundary of helping the young girls feel important, beautiful and special, while increasing their confidence and self-esteem without depending on the looks, the male hero and material things (my perspective of what's behind the princess theme). What are the pros/cons of the fairy-tale princess, anyways? Is this the ideal for young girls to live up to? Princess parenting obviously has a bad connotation, but are their positive aspects to this, while toning down the negative? (The ultimate juxtaposition of "parenting" itself!)
Just to get the conversation started, here are the cons discussed in this article regarding Princess Parenting:
- creating narcissistic children, who become narcissistic adults
- disappointment when children realize, as adults, they are not on a pedestal
- princesses (and other similar toys) are called by one person: "empty-headed girly-girl products"
- What are the pros to Princess Parenting?
- Do you agree with the cons?
- Is this the ideal for girls to live up to, or is there a better way?
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