Hey gorgeous girl! I thought long and hard about what I wanted to say to you – what words of wisdom I could pass on, what advice might you need in a world where there are probably flying cars and robots that can do the washing up. In the end, I decided to just tell you some of the things that I wish someone had told me when I was 18.
− You are enough. Beautiful enough, clever enough, sassy, funny, silly, perfect, enough. Don’t for one second think that you need to be more than you are right now. Magazines and media will try and tell you that you need to be thinner, taller, sexier – it’s all bullshit. They want to sell you stuff you don’t need, that’s how they make money. Ignore it, look in the mirror and say, ‘I am beautiful.’ Do this EVERY DAY. Eventually you’ll believe it because it’s TRUE.− Don’t ever apologise for the way you feel. If you want to wallow, eat Ben and Jerry’s and watch sad movies over and over, DO IT. If you want to go dancing, drink shots until you can’t stand and fall in love with a boy who plays the guitar, go for it. People are afraid of emotional women, it makes them nervous and as a result we try and hide how we feel. Don’t ever say ‘im fine’ if you’re not, just to please someone else. You are allowed to be sad, and angry, pissed off, happy, hilarious, witty – please don’t ever censor yourself or try and change who you are to fit in with others.− Fall in lust, as often as you want. It’s amazing. Those butterflies, can’t eat, can’t sleep, CAN’T BREATHE kind of feelings will make your eyes look like stars and your heart feel giddy. Go with it.− Don’t feel bad if he isn’t interested; loads of other boys will be and chances are, they’ll be ten times cuter and much better kisses. Feel sad for a bit and then move on to the next Romeo who deserves your attention. − Don’t settle – in love, in life, in bed – always push yourself. If you are scared, do it more. Don’t put up with bad sex; tell him what you like and what you want. If you don’t know – take some time to figure it out. It’s your body, own it.− Don’t ignore inequalities – if you see sexism, racism, ableism – go mad. Don’t stand for it. Say hey, this is fucked up. Doing that is the only way we can stop it.− There will be days when you just want to eat chocolate biscuits for dinner. That’s fine, but make sure you have something a bit healthier the next day. Like toast.− Don’t judge your friends; let them be as crazy and brave and funny as they want to be. Your job is to carry them home after a night out, to listen to them cry when things get tough and to compliment them on their boobs when they send you naked photos. If they are really friends, they’ll do the same for you.− Your mum is ALWAYS right. There will be times when you are mad at her because she wants you to put a longer skirt on or because she won’t let you have a boy stay over but she oves you more than you’ll ever know so be nice to her.
I hope that you spend your whole life being the sass-tastic, little madam that you are now. And if you need a place to crash, come to mine. I always have chocolate. And wine.All my loveEm xxxxxx”
I mentioned in my last post that I have been part of a conversation with another eight girls for over three weeks now. We have chatted on going, popping in when we can and it’s been a complete rollercoaster of emotions as we share stories about life, love, sex, relationships, work and fan girled out about a range of subjects. Some of you may caught some of it on Twitter when we occasionally take our conversations public like our crazy game of Kiss, Marry, Kill with characters from Game of Thrones! Anyway, one particular evening some of the girls were telling me about dreadful stories and how they’d over come them and I realised that the people I want to be role models for my daughter, are my friends. Not just the girls in the crazy whatsapp convo, but my best friends such as Bee, Kariss, Jess, my other blogger friends, the lovely ladies from Newcastle and of course Hayley. I’m going to be asking them all in turn to write some advice I can pass onto Little Miss when she’s older and if they allow, i’m going to be sharing what they have written for her. As a single mum, I often worry about the future and how I’m going to be the only person really who has to prepare my little girl for the world out there. It’s a terrifying prospect. I have met some absolutely appalling people in the past twenty six years, but I have also met some bloody fantastic ones too. These are the people I hope Little Miss will look up to and be inspired by, and it’s a privilege to know them.
Today I’m sharing Em of Any Girl Friday‘s words of wisdom for my daughter. I have known Em since the good ol’ days of Livejournal and she is awesome. If you want to read a girls guide to sex and feminist thinking, head over to her blog right now!
Thank you so much Em, it’s beautiful!
Look out for another, Advice for my Daughter, coming soon.