Last week at the mall, when my daughter and I were taking a shortcut to Old Navy via Nordstrom's, we dallied a bit too long over a $38 size 6x (for girls) t-shirt (me expressing shock and mild outrage). A sales associate approached and just spilled all over herself about the fabulous fashion show for girls coming up.
It was hard sell. And my daughter bought it up.
She was so so excited. Much more excited about it than going skiing. Or watching her brother's baseball game. Way more. I was hoping she'd forget about it. That used to work, but not this time, not any more. She had committed to memory every detail and asked me about it several times a day.
Soooooooo, my daughter was in a fashion show yesterday. It was all over in an hour. And they served coffee and a light breakfast. Not bad. Plus, she is over her princess stage (mostly), and didn't go for the pink puffy dress. She picked out a cool black and white striped dress--a play dress, which she wore with black leggings, black motorcycle boots, and a black fedora. Coolness.
And she was so happy!
I could have refused to let her go. But I liken this to letting my son play with toy guns. If I outlawed them, he'd probably yearn for them all the more. And it would give him something to rebel against. He knows our value system and all is fine--no special fascination with guns, much less aggressive than his friends, etc.
So, I'm hoping my daughter's self confidence won't become too wrapped up in beauty, body image, and fashion. We have to make sure she knows she is valued by other, healthier, things.