How to talk to your daughter about her
body, step one: don’t talk to your daughter about her body, except to
teach her how it works.
Don’t say anything if she’s lost weight. Don’t say anything if she’s gained weight.
If you think your daughter’s body looks amazing, don’t say that. Here are some things you can say instead:
“You look so healthy!” is a great one.
Or how about, “You’re looking so strong.”
“I can see how happy you are – you’re glowing.”
Better yet, compliment her on something that has nothing to do with her body.
Don’t comment on other women’s bodies either. Nope. Not a single comment, not a nice one or a mean one.
Teach her about kindness towards others, but also kindness towards yourself.
Don’t you dare talk about how much you hate your body in front of
your daughter, or talk about your new diet. In fact, don’t go on a diet
in front of your daughter. Buy healthy food. Cook healthy meals. But
don’t say “I’m not eating carbs right now.” Your daughter should never
think that carbs are evil, because shame over what you eat only leads to
shame about yourself.
Encourage your daughter to run because it makes her feel less
stressed. Encourage your daughter to climb mountains because there is
nowhere better to explore your spirituality than the peak of the
universe. Encourage your daughter to surf, or rock climb, or mountain
bike because it scares her and that’s a good thing sometimes.
Help your daughter love soccer or rowing or hockey because sports
make her a better leader and a more confident woman. Explain that no
matter how old you get, you’ll never stop needing good teamwork. Never
make her play a sport she isn’t absolutely in love with.
Prove to your daughter that women don’t need men to move their furniture.
Teach your daughter how to cook kale.
Teach your daughter how to bake chocolate cake made with six sticks of butter.
Pass on your own mom’s recipe for Christmas morning coffee cake. Pass on your love of being outside.
Maybe you and your daughter both have thick thighs or wide ribcages.
It’s easy to hate these non-size zero body parts. Don’t. Tell your
daughter that with her legs she can run a marathon if she wants to, and
her ribcage is nothing but a carrying case for strong lungs. She can
scream and she can sing and she can lift up the world, if she wants.
Remind your daughter that the best thing she can do with her body is to use it to mobilize her beautiful soul.
What sort of diary should I like mine to be? Something loose-knit and yet not slovenly, so elastic that it will embrace anything, solemn, slight or beautiful, that comes into my mind. I should like it to resemble some deep old desk or capacious hold-all, in which one flings a mass of odds and ends without looking them through. I should like to come back, after a year or two, and find that the collection had sorted itself and refined itself and coalesced, as such deposits so mysteriously do, into a mould, transparent enough to reflect the light of our life, and yet steady, tranquil compounds with the aloofness of a work of art. The main requisite, I think, on reading my old volumes, is not to play the part of a censor, but to write as the mood comes or of anything whatever; since I was curious to find how I went for things put in haphazard, and found the significance to lie where I never saw it at the time.
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