In defense of the princess ... - Baby Steps in High Heels

Saturday, May 16, 2015

In defense of the princess ...

This week I read a post that made a plea for rough and tumble boyhood. This is what boys need to be true to themselves. I loved it. Today, I am making a plea for the princess-loving girly girls.

It is the sad truth that our culture has tried to turn dainty princesses into idols. Soft spoken damsels in distress have been made out to be the ultimate role models for young girls everywhere. It’s no wonder that modern women have turned up their noses at these antiquated ideals. We want our young girls to have strong, independent, self-sufficient women to admire. We want our young girls to aspire to greatness, not some demure, helpless thing in a pretty dress.

However, I just do not think that strong/independent/self-sufficient and pretty/sparkly/princess things need to be mutually exclusive.

I have watched my own daughter naturally, and against my own intentions, gravitate toward everything pink. When she was two, her favorite colors {in her own words} were: pink, purple, and sparkly. This is a girl who did NOT have a pink nursery. We did not buy her a lot of pink clothing, and she did not see a princess movie until almost age three. Yet, when she did, it was like she had found herself.

We thought she would outgrow the phase, but rather the princess obsession has only matured. Instead of role playing Cinderella, she now transforms into her own princess during playtime. Sometimes it is a combination of princesses she has watched in movies {and yes, we have gone through the obligatory and lengthy Princess Elsa phase}, but often she acts out her very own scenes.


She always wants to wear the longest ball gown she can find in her closet. Sometimes she layers dresses. Every piece of jewelry is carefully selected to complete her look, and sometimes she wears every single necklace, bracelet, and tiara she can find at the same time.

If, for some reason, she cannot play with her dress-up clothes, she turns towels into dresses, napkins into bracelets, rocks into rings, and books into tiaras. She channels her creativity and uses her imagination. And she is happy.

And when she is finally satisfied with her princess costume concoction du jour, she twirls.

And when she dances and twirls, all dressed up like a princess, the look of pure joy on her face cannot be ignored. She is in her element. She is her very own self. Being a princess-loving girl does not make her weak. It does not make her incapable. It does not mean she has less potential for greatness.

She is fierce. She is strong. She is independent. She never waits for a prince to rescue her. (Unless, of course, she is explaining to him how to do it.) Being true to herself and not being forced into somebody else’s conflicting ideal is what will propel her toward a lifetime of both joy and success. 

8 comments:

  1. She is simply a self rescuing princess. The best kind.

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  2. Wonderful and well said!!

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  3. Great perspective. I think as parents it's not our job to pigeon hole our kids into whatever society sets forth. I am a big advocate in gender neutral/equality/against stereotyping. I grew up playing in the mud but also loving pink. There shouldn't be divided spaces!! And with my young toddlers I give them the choice... Here are ALL of the toys (or whatever) you can choose in the store. Some times they go for the trucks and some times they grab a crown. If they are happy I am happy :) Great post!

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  4. Great post! It seems as though your daughter is the best of both worlds! She loves herself enough to have the princess complex however respects herself and has enough confidence to be independent! It is great that you are a parent who loves her no matter what personality she shapes into! This is a very cute post, thanks for sharing!! ~Amanda Marie~

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  5. Great post! It seems as though your daughter is the best of both worlds! She loves herself enough to have the princess complex however respects herself and has enough confidence to be independent! It is great that you are a parent who loves her no matter what personality she shapes into! This is a very cute post, thanks for sharing!! ~Amanda Marie~

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  6. Play time is imagination time and it looks like you are helping her figure out that princesses don't need rescuing.
    I'm glad I found you through facebook groups. Feel free to check out and comment on my blog as well. Keep posting!

    -Romina @ www.dietyogaenergy.com

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  7. Lovely post! I have an 8 month old and am operating under the "let him be little" principle. Society pushes a "no crying, be tough" agenda on little boys. He's already a tough little thing, but when he wants to cry or rest his little head on his mama's shoulder, you better believe I'm going to let him, and I'm going to soak in every minute.

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  8. I love this! I think the goal is not to go beyond the stereotypical Disney Princess and I think that without promoting it she was able to start embracing her own journey. My heart is touched. Thank you for sharing.

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