Two and a half years of training Gabby to be my little princess (or “ya-ya” as the case may be) has done me well. And low and behold she is a card carrying member of the Princess Club. I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t over think it…just a bit.
Gabby’s biggest obsession has been for Cinderella, a fine choice if you ask me. She loves the movie, loves the dolls, wants to read the books all the time. It was somewhere around the two thousandth time reading it, I realized that perhaps the message is not one I want my daughter to grow up believing. It’s not the whole mean stepmother and ugly stepsisters thing, although I certainly don’t want her to have to experience that. It’s also not the whole friends with mice thing because I hope she doesn’t encounter one of those nasty rodents.
It’s the fact that girls grow up thinking that they need to have a shining moment where they are transformed into a glamour girl and meet the man of their dreams which must be a royal prince. Don’t get me wrong, I always wanted to be a princess and feel quite content with the prince I have. I’m just afraid it sets up an unreal expectation of real life.
I bet you were thinking that I was going to complain about some women’s liberation something or other…it’s degrading for women to have to be all dolled up and presented to a man who wishes to wed her or not…yadda yadda. Nah. Although I want my daughter growing up believing that she can be anything from a princess to a president, I strongly believe that women are in fact different than men. We have different bodies (i.e. the whole having babies business), we have different hormones, we have the ability to find what we are looking for in the refrigerator therefore we are different. To expect for us to be seen equal to men is forgetting the fact that we are not equal – we are better 🙂
And really the problem I have with Cinderella is the fact that I know WAY TOO many girls that grow up expecting that they should live like a princess and not appreciating that they already are. I want Gabby to realize that sometimes a horse drawn carriage comes in minivan form. I want Gabby to know that shopping at The Gap might just have to be as good as a Fairy Godmother gown. I want Gabby to be satisfied with a house in the ‘burbs instead of a palace. And mostly I want Gabby to believe that her prince needs to treat her like a princess but doesn’t actually have to hold a title to do so. Maybe someone could rewrite Cinderella’s story to mirror something like that…