Raising Girls in Our World Today

Let's just get down to it, being a woman is hard. I'm not saying that men have it easy in any aspect, but women are challenged and struggle in different ways than men usually do. I think back to my days in Junior High and High School and I fear for my baby girl. I'm excited for her too, but I know the possibility of some struggles that may exist.

Earlier this week I calculated that Remy will start high school in the late 2020's.

I know my own struggles during that time from experience.

I know other girl's struggles during the times after I was out of high school.

I know some girl's struggles in high school today.

(insert shaking of head and possibly a word that I deem inappropriate here)

Who knows how much more these struggles may intensify by 2027!

First of all. As a woman I know how hard we can be on ourselves. We can hold ourselves to standards that are basically impossible to achieve. When we fail...we spiral.

Media tells us we aren't pretty enough. The world lets us know that we aren't skinny enough. The loved ones around us tell us we are beautiful, smart, strong women. The world, however, does everything it can to weaken us.

And it does weaken us to an extent.

At first the motive to weaken us was simply to buy different products. Different make-up, different clothes, different jewelry. Anything that is suppose to "make us prettier".

However, this kind of weakening has grown and it has began to destroy the population of women to the point that our gender believes we are never good enough.

When you don't feel good enough, you crumble. You give in. You think less of yourself. You expect less of yourself. You expect less from others for yourself.

Some women may turn to sex. They think if men find them desirable in bed, then they are desirable in some way. Unfortunately instead of giving women any value, this devalues them even more.

Some women turn to alcohol. Drown themselves in their sorrow to believe they are happy. They get high on their drunkenness. They have fun when they are intoxicated. But once they are sober, that high wears off. Things may have happened during those times of being intoxicated that devalued them.

Some women turn to relationships, good and bad. Maybe it's a man, maybe it's a friend, maybe it's a parent or family member. It may be a healthy relationship or it may be unhealthy. Fortunate are those that have healthy relationships that can possibly help in giving value back to a young woman. Women need someone in their life who helps build them up rather than tear them down even more. Relationships can help some find value, but for some it can also just devalue them even more.

Some women turn to drugs. This is just another outlet to get high and escape reality. They may view themselves as a better, more fun individual when they are experiencing a high. Again, just another outlet that creates less value in a person.

Some women turn to bullying others. It makes them feel better to put others down. If they can't be satisfied with their own life then others have to suffer with them. Women find power in this. Maybe they become feared and can convince themselves that fear can be love. Again, they may find value in the moment, but it devalues them even more and also brings other women down with them.

Some women turn to or fall into depression. This is a self-withering option. One where you can utilize one, some, all or none of the other options above in conjunction. It's a dark place where you truly can hit rock bottom. You find yourself in a black hole and you feel like there is no way out. This is a place that takes away our ability to even see value.

Some women by any and all grace turn to God. This may be the first option they go to or it may be the option after all has failed them. For myself, this was an option I turned to after a couple choices above. But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 2 Corinthians 12:9. God knows that we will be weakened. God will give us power in that weakness if we allow Him to. God doesn't expect us to be perfect. God doesn't expect for us to be strong every single day. God doesn't expect for us to carry our burdens alone. God's power is made perfect in our own weaknesses.

Life was not made to be an easy journey. People may look at you and believe that you do indeed have it easy, but we all suffer our own weaknesses in our own lives. Everybody's weakness looks different, but God can use it for His own power.

In raising a little girl, it's hard.

In raising a little boy, it's hard. 

Raising kids is hard. 

I look back now and feel deeply for my parents. The things they went through raising my sister and I must have been difficult, emotional and sometimes even gut-wrenching.

Because the truth is...if you want to experience the highest joy and the deepest sadness, become a parent. My emotions are all over the place since becoming a mom. My kids control my emotions. I know that any pain I have felt in the past will be doubled, possibly tripled if/when my children go through the same. However, I also know that any happiness I have felt in the past will also be doubled or tripled when my children go through the same.

I know there may be some that may think "This mom is crazy! Why worry and be fearful of something that will not happen for years!"

My answer...because the solution, the help, the hopeful prevention starts now.

I have began to pray for my daughter. I pray for her to know her worth in the eyes of God, not in the eyes of the world. I pray for her to have uplifting relationships that only encourage her instead of destroy her. I pray for her to be strong, but gracious in the realms of bullying. I pray for her to become a person who shines His light to others and to know what that means. Be forgiving, be loving, be gentle, be understanding but also be brave. I pray for her to stand up for others and to not allow others to determine someone else's self worth. I pray for her to know her beauty and to understand that other women and other men cannot determine what that beauty should look like.

I also have already intentionally began to encourage my 17 month old. Talking positive to her daily and building her up. Not building her up to a standard where she would feel like she would let me down at any point, but building her up to understand that she is enough just being herself. Helping her find her strengths. Helping her admit to her weaknesses and allowing God to make His power known in those weaknesses. Helping her understand that the world is filled with ways to make us feel unworthy, but that the world is not a place to find her standards. Helping her know that she will sin, but that there is redemption in God. However also helping her understand that just because we all sin it does not excuse us to do things "just because we all sin".

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6

The training begins when you become a mom or a dad. The training starts early. As it should, because we should well equip our sons and daughters before they depart into this world.

I want my daughter to understand her worth. I want my daughter to refuse the standards of this world and shine with the love and standards of God.

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  1. I just found your blog.. I love this read.. It is so true and hit home. I have a little girl and it is not easy raising a little girl.. All the things I think about that she will go through I am so fearful yet so excited... Thanks for sharing
    Chelsea @ thewilliamsjourney1.blogspot.com

    1. Hi Chelsea! Thanks for stopping by. :)
      Parenting is so joyful and yet so difficult. I'm constantly filled with worries, but filled with happiness for them at the same time. Our world makes it difficult for little girls to figure out how to grow up. So many things are thrown at them and I think as moms it should make us a bit fearful. If we are fearful, at least we are aware.

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