In the monochromatic girlworld of mass-marketing, how do you protect your daughter’s imagination? As Peggy Orenstein writes in her fabulous book Cinderella Ate My Daughter, this is her major concern as a parent: How do you help these girls to remember that pink is just one color in the rainbow? With the limited, repetitive roles for girls in movie after movie and too many books, how do you keep showing them that there are infinite parts they can play?
I make up many stories for my kids, as does my husband. The problem is I want to brainwash my kids but not too much! As my kids’ mom, I obviously, already have an enormous amount of power in their lives. The stories my kids tell me are often derivative of the ones I’ve told them, sometimes too much. When they get stuck like that or continually repeat the same story, I try saying something like: She always takes that path and it doesn’t work out for her so well, what do you think she would do now instead? Maybe she gallops off on a dragon’s back? Or hides under a rock? Runs so fast she flies into the sky?
I would love to hear some suggestions about how you protect your daughters’ imaginations.