Let’s compare raising a female child to a beginner baking a cake.
They would make sure to follow every step in the recipe carefully. While the cake is in the oven, they would check it from time to time to ensure it doesn’t get burnt.
The same goes for raising female children. Parents must pay close attention to what goes on in their daughters’ lives while they are growing up. Between birthing a girl and bringing her up to become a decent member of society, there is a long and overwhelming process involved. It is a lifelong deal to raise a girl who would be ready to take on a patriarchal world that discriminates and pressures her to be a lot of things she is not. Times have changed, therefore, parenting a girl from Generation Z could be a challenging task.
Here are some things from the viewpoint of a Gen Z that you can take note of:
How to Raise a Female Child
1. Do not dismiss her opinions
How often you silence a child plays a great part in determining how courageous she becomes. Girls are often silenced with statements such as, ‘What do you know? You are a girl’, ‘This is men talk! You have no business in this conversation’, ‘Go and join your mother in the kitchen’. etc.
You must listen to what your daughter has to say and not shut her up so that you don’t shrink her confidence. Allow her to express herself and when she is wrong, correct her. This is way better than forcing your opinions on her and will help her to have a mind of her own.
2. Fulfil her needs and make her understand why some needs are left unfulfilled
When your female child asks for something, if it is within your means, give it to her; if not, let her know that you can’t give it to her. If it is within your means, but you feel it isn’t something she should have, let her know why she cannot have it. As a Gen Z myself, I know well enough that what you deprive a child of can and will be given to her by someone with bad intentions.
3. Be a healthy example to them
It is in human nature to pick up habits we see. So, while teaching her to do the right things, make sure your actions speak louder than your words.
4. Teach her everything
There is a lot your daughter needs to know. Let the teaching come from you.
The street is a dangerous place to learn from. Many believe that experience is the best teacher, but it’s not okay to normalise experiencing bad things to learn when someone could teach the child to avoid them.
Teach her about sex, her body and its reactions, hygiene, and every other thing you think she needs to know. This is advice from someone who learned half of the things she knows from people who used it for their selfish intentions.
5. Compliment and reassure her
I have come across many women and many lack validation. So, they seek it from the wrong people.
When your girl does something well, tell her and if you can, give her a gift for it. When she fails, correct and encourage her. When she feels less of herself, help her to boost her morale.
Many women fall for men who make them feel beautiful and worthy, no matter how toxic he is. Some girls even stay in a relationship where they are victims of physical abuse for years because they feel no one could treat them better than their toxic partner.
Morals and etiquette aren’t the only things that make a woman. All these also add to her growth. In the absence of these, there would only be a decent child who keeps making the same mistakes, who has no mind of her own and therefore has to depend on others for everything. Do not let the streets and experience do what you can do for your child. It is usually the littlest things that determine whether we become the best people or the worst.