Wednesday, May 2, 2012

How Disney Is Hurting Our Daughters

I think we are doing our daughters a serious disservice.

We show them movies of princes fighting dragons and then whisking the princess off to happily ever after.

We read them stories of courageous men who, against all odds, become the hero and win the girl.

We allow them to believe that Prince Charming is just around the corner.

And we fail to prepare them for reality.

Because the truth is, most men are not Prince Charming.

The vast majority of men will use her, break her heart, and walk out without a second thought.

This is the reality that we fail to give our daughters the proper guidance to navigate through.

They go out into the world, expecting to find the fairytale romance that they have seen played over and over again in the movies, and have no idea that what is really out there is cold, cruel, and disappointing.

Life isn't a Twilight Movie.

But try explaining that to a 15 year old girl.

The sad fact is that there are very few (although admittedly, some) men who fit the hero role. Who will treat her the way she deserves. Who will make her his princess. And who will give her a happily ever after.

Much more likely is that he will use her for everything she is worth and then, like a total coward, sneak away without so much as the dignity to say goodbye. He will abandon her without second thought of her feelings, her heart, her well-being, or her innocence. He will protect himself instead of consider how to protect her. He will tell her lies and then fail to follow through on promises. He will leave her broken, and never even think to help pick up the pieces.

This, my friends, is what we need to be preparing our girls for.

They need to understand how to guard their hearts, protect their spirits, and prevent themselves from being abused and broken. They need to understand that not every tall, dark, and handsome man is a hero. Villains come in pretty packaging too.

Mostly, our daughters need to understand that a fairytale ending usually doesn't come from a man sweeping them off their feet and riding into the sunset. It comes from a man who is honest, stable, loving, and willing to stick it out through good times and bad.

This is the hero worth waiting for. And unfortunately, he may take a while to show up. Or he may not come at all. But we need to teach our daughters to be discerning, careful, and smart. To protect themselves, and not blindly jump on the back of the horse of the first good-looking guy that comes along.

Because it isn't worth settling for the villian. Ever.

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