The Problem with Princesses

Disney has done us no favors, folks.  This morning I roused my sleepy 5 year-old out of bed and carried her into the living room to watch the Royal Wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton.  I thought she would be delighted to see a common girl become a princess in real life before her very eyes.

I was wrong.  She watched in awe at first, but before I knew it, she was on the ground kicking and crying.  It was a fit of tumultuous jealousy and pure rage.

Lately she's been telling who ever will listen that she will become a princess.  I began thinking of how this could be possible. 

1.  Hubby and I could go found or conquer a country and place our selves on the throne - making her a princess.  Not going to happen.

2.  Possibly switched at birth?  Being in the US it would be too hard to get switched with a royal baby considering we have no royalty here.  So no.

3.  Hubby or I could leave one another and marry into royalty.  Since I love my husband and have yet to ever even MEET royalty.  That won't be happening.

4. We could put her up for adoption and perhaps a royal family would pick her up.  It happened to Moses, but not real likely.

5.  Of all the ways for her to achieve princessness the most practical and the only one she could maneuver of her own doing would be to marry a prince.  Still a toughy.

Even of the Disney Princesses, Cinderella and Belle were the only ones that were not princesses in their own right before marrying.  However, Cinderella's father was a Duke, so she was by birthright already royalty.  Belle was the only commoner to become a princess and she thought she was getting any ugly beast.  Royalty was only a bonus.

My daughter's aspirations to become a princess places her personal value on status and name of her future husband.  I would rather her spend her childhood aspiring to be her best self in her activities.  I don't want to raise a gold digger; I want to raise a strong independent woman who marries a good man whom she loves.

I want for her the happiness in marriage I have.  I met my husband when we were in our young teens, and I married him when his major was undeclared.  I would have been just as happy if he had gone into farming rather than medicine.  My husband doesn't define me; my children don't define me; I define me. 

I know childhood is a time for dreaming without limits.  Nonetheless, I want my daughter to focus on what she can do with her life, not how she can elevate her status through marriage.  I want her to take fate into her own hands and dream of dreams that she alone can achieve. I hope to help her adjust her mindset and separate fantasy and pretend from dreams and goals. 

The last thing I want to do as a mother is release into the world a young woman who believes she deserves royal treatment and should receive unearned entitlements.  Trust me, I know women like this and it ain't pretty as a princess.


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