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Save our daughters

I remember being about eight years old and wearing a new bathing suit, feeling like a glorious mermaid princess, and an adult told me I’d better suck in my stomach. My world came crashing down around me – I was utterly crushed. Princess? No. Ugly. Unworthy. Hated.

And from that moment on, my body became my enemy. One comment. That’s all it took.

I suppose it’s not really that simple, though. I was set up. Even that young, surely I heard all the diet ads on TV or in magazines, heard women around me lamenting their bodies, calling themselves fat. My mother did her best to teach me what a real body was like, and to give me a balanced view of my own body, but it just wasn’t enough.

I passionately feel that we need to and hopefully can stop this cycle with the generation we are bringing up. By learning to love ourselves, we can teach our girls to love themselves, and our sons to know what real women are – inside and out. But how?

Do your children have body issues? How have you handled situations like these? What have you done to prevent body image issues? Do you think it has worked? Write in your own blog your thoughts on the matter and then e-mail me at bonnie@theshapeofamother.com with the message title, “SOAM Collaborative” and include:

1. The link to your entry (not the blog’s homepage, but the specific entry).
2. The title of your entry.
3. Your name or username you like to be referred to online.

Below are the entries women have shared in this collaborative project.

The Skin I’m In by Sarah R. Bloom
Five Things I’m Doing to Save My Daughter by Mary Wolfson
Body Beautiful by Louise
The Shape of this Mother – Barefoot Tori
Body Issues – JBurgi
Confession – Walls
Shape of My Mother: My Belly and Me – Alana
Scars – Melissa Ann
Beautiful – NinjaEema
The Shape of a Mother – Rhonda
Silver Ribbons of Motherhood – Laurie Bell
The Culture of Manipulation – Julie FitzGerald
Their Future Happiness Starts Here, With Us – Suzanne
Enough is Enough: My Journey Towards Self-Love – Beth Turner
Stretch Marks – APMama
Positive Body Image for Gianna – Kaylene Brown (Read more of her SOD series here.)
My Quest – Emma Powell
Save Our Sons – The Coastal Living Mom