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#parent | #kids | 15 Things You Should Never Say to Your Kids | #sextrafficing | #childsaftey | #hacking | #aihp

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When Lifehacker staff writer Sarah Showfety’s young daughter recently tore it up on the soccer field, she was met at the sidelines afterward for some congratulatory post-game re-capping—and the message from at least one bystander that she also looked cute while smashing her opponent into the ground.

“It reminded me,” Sarah wrote, “that the way we have traditionally spoken to young girls, and the toxic messages embedded within that speaking, are bothersome at best and confidence-eroding at worst. The traditional focus on girls’ appearance when they’re little can cause their looks be an overwhelming factor in their self-worth as an adult.”

She continues:

The point is not to shame anyone for using these knee-jerk go-to phrases; it’s how we’ve been trained as a society to talk to girls and women. (If I can go to book club without someone’s haircut, clothes, makeup, purse, or earrings being mentioned in the first five minutes, then strike me dead.) The point is to bring alternatives to the classic appearance-based tropes that roll so effortlessly off our tongues when talking to little girls.

Next time, rather than a litany of: “You look so cute,” “I love your dress,” “what a princess you are,” “look at your pretty nails,” and the dreadful “how many boyfriends do you have?,” try one or more of these alternatives to connect with the little girls in your life.

[What to Say to Little Girls Instead of ‘You Look So Pretty’]

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