The world I would give my daughter

My daughter is asleep in her bed.

She lives a safe, secure life. I’m a stay-at-home-parent. She has never been left in the care of anyone other than her parents.

She cannot live all her life this way. I do not want her to.

One day I want her to venture out in this world. I want her to have freedoms. I want her to have choice.

I want her to be able to acknowledge that so many blessings and privileges she enjoys are due to the hard work of women before her. The right to her own money. The right to work, to own property. The right to an education. The right to control her own fertility. The right to marry and divorce, when and if she chooses.

I want her to understand that these blessings and privileges are not extended to all women around the world. I want her to believe in the right for all women to enjoy them. I want her to be unafraid to speak when necessary for those who can’t, and to listen and support those women who can.

I want her to live in a world where her right to exist in public is never questioned, where it will not make her a target for abuse. A world where women can be leaders without being called bossy, argumentative without being called shrill, annoyed without being called hormonal. A world where she can be a mother without being called slummy or yummy. A world where women are not judged by what bathroom they choose, or what size they wear. A world where women are not shamed for the natural functions of their bodies. A world where women are not asking for it. A world where women never have to be told to smile, or brushed off because it was just a joke.

She is too young to ask for things herself. She knows nothing of these troubles. So, while she sleeps, safe in her bed I will be her voice.

This is the world I would give my daughter. Tell me, is this too much to ask?

4 thoughts on “The world I would give my daughter”

  1. Exactly, my feelings (and there are so many feelings) exactly. I wish we could grab a tea/coffee (and cake) to discuss this and more. Impossible, but know you aren’t alone in these feelings. Solidarity from an American expat in the U.K.

    1. Sorry – this got sent to Spam automatically! Thank you. We’ll just have to have coffee and cake separately but all the while knowing we are not alone. Solidarity is welcome.

  2. Hey Francesca
    I have these same thoughts as I look at my daughters as they sleep. I try not to feel worried, to trust that the way I am raising them, where their opinions are heard and valued, their anger made space for, where they don’t have to be small to be accepted, but loved unconditionally even when they are larger than life (if you know what I mean) – I hope it is enough.

    1. Whoops. Sorry comments got spammed! Thanks Lucy. I hope it is enough too. Maybe it is my liberal echo-chamber, but often I do feel hopeful change will come. We’ll keep working for it until it does.

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