The appropriate response to any of these statements is simply, “thank you.” Though comments like these are sometimes said tauntingly, there is no insult in being told you do something “like a girl.” Just watch Missy Franklin swim a race or Abby Wambach play soccer if you doubt this.
The Proctor and Gamble owned “Always” brand has launched a campaign to change this way of thinking. They recently produced a video interviewing young girls about what it means to do some things “like a girl.” I saw this video last week for the first time when my daughter shared it on Facebook, and it brings tears to my eyes each time I watch it. I hope every girl everywhere gets a chance to see it. I hope you watch it here now. It is worth your time.
My daughter joined a swim team when she was seven years old and now swims competitively in college. Throughout middle school, most of her classmates had never seen her swim. Some of the boys would joke with her that swimming wasn’t very hard. Their eighth grade graduation celebration was at a pool. Several boys challenged my daughter to a race, thinking they could easily beat her. A few of the smarter ones realized, when they saw her enter the pool in her suit, cap and goggles that perhaps they were no match for her - and backed down. The one who decided to race her didn't stand a chance. They all learned something that day.
The ridiculous stereotype that has been associated with “like a girl” is being challenged and changed by girls everywhere. I know, because my daughter is one of them. So, if someone tells you that you do something “like a girl,” just take the advice of the girl in the blue dress in the video: “Keep doing it, it’s working.”
|My daughter is proud to do everything just #Like a Girl|
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