We must nurture as well as teach and protect little girls. When parents and a young daughter share a nurturing relationship the young girl can affirm who she is and be comfortable with the image she has of herself. She will see in herself the ability to stand strong even when she has to stand alone. This is the real power of self confidence and self reliance. The verse below, written for a young girl who was encountering some difficulty with her peers in elementary school, is an example of the inspiration and affirmation a young girl can have.
My name is (child's name)
I am beautiful, intelligent, and smart.
I am happy to be who I am.
My mother is (mother's name).
My father is (father's name).
My mother and father love me very much
My father says he love me more than anything in the whole wide world.
Because I am smart, I owe it to myself to be the best I can be.
I will follow the advice of my father, my mother, and my teachers.
I will always do my best.
I will be calm and careful.
I am not afraid of making a mistake.
I am not afraid people will laugh at me.
If I make a mistake, I will not worry.
If necessary, I will re-do until I get it right.
I will not allow other people to make me feel bad.
I will not feel bad if someone calls me names.
Because I am not the names other people may call me.
I am what I decide to be.
With the help of God, my mother and father, and my teachers,
I will be the best I can be.
But if everyone else fails me, I can always count on God.
With God and me, all things are possible.
Little girls who share nurturing parent-child relationship, whether with both parents, or in a father and daughter relationship, or in a mother and daughter relationship, learn to be independent and strong. They learn to be their own person. But, to be done properly, they must learn to be their own person without becoming spoiled, obnoxious, irrreverent, rude, uncivil, and disrespectiful.
Little girls who have self confidence and feel self sufficient understand the power of self reliance. Empowered by self confidence they are less likely to be influenced by the crowd to go against their better judgement. They are less likely to surrender their better judgement to the influence of the crowd, even a crowd of their peers, to engage in behavior detrimental to themselves or to others.
If only for that reason, it is important that every parent does his or her best to inspire empowering self confidence in our daughters and other little girls.