I can’t speak for every girl or woman’s experience, but growing up I got the message a lot that I should be, or should want to be beautiful or pretty, and that my value as a person was tied to that. I didn’t feel particularly beautiful, but I also didn’t feel like that should make me less important or less valuable, although I did feel like that was a message that I got a lot. I noticed that when strangers met me and my younger brother together, and they were trying to be nice, they would say to me “Aren’t you just a pretty little girl!” and to him they would say “Aren’t you a strong little man!” or some variation. Extended family used to do the same, but I was a very “O is for Outspoken” advocate for myself with them, and I would tell them I was the smartest kid in my class, and the fastest runner in our neighborhood. I didn’t want to be called pretty.
As an adult I don’t mind being called beautiful or pretty. Read More