In preparation for a workshop I did in Los Angeles last weekend, I was reading Talking Sex with Your Kids by Amber Madison. It’s a great book for parents and covers a lot of important information. However, the section that really caught my attention was the following:
Why Your Daughter Needs to Know Boys Aren’t Assholes
… Now, imagine that we were able to convince all young women that guys were decent human beings who want more than “just one thing.” Suppose girls were taught that guys like relationships and that they value intelligence, a sense of humor, and a kind soul. For one, romantic relationships would seem much more obtainable and appealing. But secondly, girls would have an easier time learning to value those traits in themselves. When we tell girls that guys only want them for their vaginas, they get the message that their value lies solely within their sexuality. Wonder why so many teen girls seem overly consumed with their bodies, clothing and makeup? Because we inadvertently support the notion that a girl’s biggest asset is her sex appeal. If girls were raised hearing “what guys want is a girl who’s ambitious,” then to impress a guy, they would be hitting their books, not jumping in the sack.
What you tell your daughter about the opposite sex matters. It affects both how she will approach romantic relationships and what she will value in herself. Illuminating the fact that guys are real people with real emotions makes them less intimidating and makes it easier for girls to know what they should expect out of a relationship. If you let your daughter believe that guys are assholes, how can you insist she have standards for the type of guys she dates? Why not date losers–if all guys are jerks anyway.