How My Daughter Enlightened Me About Princesses

How My Daughter Enlightened Me About Princesses

One mom thought princesses were just for girly girls – until she had a daughter.

By: Nicole Fabian-Weber

There was a time long ago, before my children were ever glints in my eye, where I vowed to myself that if I ever had a daughter, she would not be into princesses or pink -- mainly, princesses, who, let’s be honest, often wear pink. At the time, I found frilly cartoon characters in ruffly dresses with tiaras on their heads to be just plain garish, and I thought princesses sent the wrong message to little girls. Often, they were waiting to be rescued by a knight in shining armor, as opposed to taking control of their lives for themselves. Also, they’re typically unrealistically attractive, what with their giant eyes, minuscule noses, full lips, and tiny waists. But, alas, after having a toddler daughter for a few years now, princesses (and pink) have made their inevitable way into my life. And, I have to say, I really don’t mind it.

It all started out when my 2 1/2-year-old daughter got sick in the spring. In a moment of desperation, I told her she could watch a movie (something she had never done), and I instinctively put on something with, yes, princesses in it. My girl, as you may surmise, was completely enraptured. She sat frozen in front of the television, wrapped up in a blanket, while I periodically brought her water and crackers. I’ve always hated the idea of kids being zombies in front of televisions, but I couldn’t deny the fact that it was pretty adorable, seeing my daughter so interested in something -- and so still! I had never seen her that still before!

A few days later, after my little one had gotten better, she started talking about princesses. A lot. She wanted to play "princesses." She put on a shirt of my husband’s and said, "Mama, this is my princess costume." We spent the next few days playing princesses, which mainly entailed her wearing a long shirt and me chasing after her, referring to her as Princess P. or Your Royal Highness.

And the princesses didn’t stop there.

After letting my little one watch a princess movie -- and seeing how much she enjoyed it -- I let her watch another princess-themed TV show once in a while. And when she asked if she could have a princess book when we were out one day, I said, “Sure!” without hesitation. When she came with me to all of my prenatal appointments recently, and the nurses would give her a princess-themed sticker afterward, I nearly teared up at how adorable and proud she was to peel the sticker off the backing and place it on her shirt. My daughter had become a card-carrying princess lover, and I was OK with it.

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The thing I didn't realize before having children of my own (back when I, you know, had all the answers) was that little girls aren't defined by their love of princesses -- unless you let them be. My toddler is still into all of the things she was into before any princess made her beautiful blond way into her life -- stuffed animals, cars, drawing, music. Princesses are just another, for lack of a better word, interest of hers. Who am I to tell her what to like and not like? Do I push princesses on her? Of course not. But, I don't push anything on her. She's her own person, and, let's get real here, what toddlers like one day, they hate the next. So, best to simply follow her lead, in my opinion.


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Before I became a mother, I, like many people, attached a stigma to the whole princess thing. I thought, in some ways, that these fictional ladies who dwelled in palaces turned little girls into passive carbon copies of one another who would come to have unrealistic expectations about life (what can I say, before I had kids, I wasn't the smartest). But, now that I see that my daughter is no different now than when she had no idea what a princess was, I've completely come around.

In fact, I just may buy her a crown she's been eyeing for Christmas. You know, in addition to some new trucks.

Does your child have any interests that you're not fond of?

Nicole Fabian-Weber is the mama to a sweet toddler girl and an equally sweet baby boy. She lives outside of NYC and writes for The Stir and numerous other online publications.

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