So goes one of my favourite quotes. I have always aspired to be a strong woman, I know a shit tonne of them and I am doing all I can to ensure I am raising strong women. That last point is a hard ask however, when you are dealing with strong, confident minds and are outnumbered 2 to 1 a lot of the time, it really is a tough nut to crack.
In a world where girls are still being told what to do, how to look and how to act, I really want my girls to be as happy in themselves as possible. This means cultivating their minds in such a way as they can be confident in everything they do and say. In practice however, going up against the power of a toddler mind is something I struggle with. How to strike that balance between strong confident girl and utter brat? It’s a real tightrope act.
I try and give the girls as much independence as I can. It’s something I was very determined to do with Mini-having received a plethora of situations and life skills that she would apparently struggle with, I made it my mission to help her to be as independent as possible. At the age of 6, she can now dress herself (though she struggles with some of the finer motor skills such as buttoning and managing zips), brush her teeth, make toast, go to the toilet, even do her own laundry all by herself (though under my supervision!). Her sister at nearly 3 and 1/2 can also do the same.
Still with great power, comes great responsability. Or something. Being out with the girls can be a challenge. When we’re near a busy road and neither one wants to hold my hand -“No Mummy, I will walk my own self!”. When we’re baking and both will insist on “doing the eggs and flour and sugar my self!” or when we’re in a rush to get somewhere (as we always seem to be) and one (or both!) will insist on tying their shoelaces themselves even though this is a skill neither have mastered.
My tips for dealing with raising strong women:
- Let them learn: In my (very humble experience), kids want to learn and be as independent as possible. This goes for boys and girls. Some simple chores that even small kids can do are-loading and emptying the dishwasher, setting the table, putting their dirty clothes in the washing machine, and folding and putting their clothes back! My two love also to cook, which is apparently a great way to get fussy eaters to expand their repetoire, though they don’t seem to have gotten the memo for this!
- Getting down to their level: I always try and explain things that aren’t a popular choice with my two my kneeling down with them. It’s an effort on my part to let them know that I respect their desire to spread their wings, but I’m their mammy and I know what’s best. (At least most of the time!)
- If all else fails, I find wine helps. For me, not them!
Have you any tips for how to deal with raising strong women (and men!)?I’d love to hear about them in the comments below!