Are you raising THE GOOD GIRL?
When good isn’t enough.
She is Likeable, Beautiful, Always put together, Top of her class, Follows the rules, Quiet, Doesn’t fight or get angry, Confident, Driven, Represses or control how she really feels Simply Perfect
We all know these kinds of super girls. You probably have also felt the need to be as perfect or have once been compared to her and told “Can’t you just be like her” Or maybe you once told your girl to just measure up!
The society (which we are) consciously or unconsciously sets the stereotype of who a Good Girl is- The Good Girl Mould or Syndrome. Schools have certain standards for Honors List and Parents easily have a pet name for that child who brings them trophies and accolades. The media as well constantly portrays the look of beauty and perfection.
Parents have lofty expectation from their girls, they were top of their classes, so should they. They also in their parenting styles give instruction that keeps you in line with this mould. I remember being told as a child to put up the good girl attitude when you were out visiting. You dare not receive food when you were out or tell your host you wanted more when you had the rare chance of receiving them. It made you look well brought up when you simply say “I’m fine, thank you” even if you are starving.
Someone who read one of our last posts- The Gift of Brighter Girl said she could relate with myth of a Good Girl because she was raised to fit into it. Being the firstborn of her family, she needed to keep up with certain standards so her younger ones could follow her footsteps. Sounds right, doesn’t it? But she grew up feeling deprived of childhood, as she had no room for mistakes and constantly had to live up to the ‘fist born standard’.
While there is nothing wrong with these qualities, it has its ill sides which call for balance. Not every child will come in the Good Girl Mould and the reality is, life doesn’t always reward people who conform, don’t have a unique voice and can’t fight for what they believe in.
The good girl myth makes girls settle in, doesn’t build resilience in girls which eventually make girls lose their authenticity.
Constantly teaching girls to suppress their feeling and not teaching them how well to express it come with consequences in future.
Think about a woman who deserves a raise at work but can’t ask for one or one that should be asking for a promotion or a transfer and is too fearful to ask.
Think about a woman who is being abused in a relationship but feels she should be able to take it in some more.
Our society is filled with women who were made for more but hasn’t been taught how to lay a demand on MORE.
And the way to change this narrative is raising resilience girls, who relish their authenticity and are taught to thrive instead of conforming.
So instead of raising a girl who conforms to a societal standard, raise one who:
- Is raised and nurtured in light of her uniqueness, strength and ability.
- Has found her voice, her niche, she is confident and thrives in it.
- Who has developed through open engagement and practice her sense of reasoning and good judgment.
- Who is able to give expression to what she believes whether it is her faith, values, feelings and opinions
- Who knows she’s not perfect but on a journey of growth, change and progress (she therefore stands up each time she stumbles)
If this is the girl you are raising, you got a good girl and it doesn’t matter how the society perceives her or how many times she falls short, her falls will be stepping stones where she learns and grooms her best version.
Can you relate with these myths of a Good Girl or that feeling of being pressured to be perfect? We’ll love to hear your Good Girl story.