Advice on raising girls

Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.

Advice on raising girls

Postby Annapurna » Thu Jan 29, 2009 10:08 am

Drolma wrote:Indeed. It's probably better to consider how we do or do not perpetuate a culture that leans towards male-domination (gosh I don't like that phrase) now and in the future, rather than focusing too much on the awesomeness of women. Certainly nobody disagrees about the awesomeness of females! :mrgreen:

Seriously though, if the Buddha said this is how it's going to go, I have to consider how I personally am adding to the situation. That sort of investigation might be fruitful for practice, insofar as insight, mindfulness and outer conduct. After all I am raising a little girl. This is good householder stuff.

:buddha2:


Dear Drolma, since you say you are raising a little girl.... :heart:

I am forever thankful to my beloved parents, grandmother and brother that they raised me the way they did.

My parents always wanted a girl , (so did all my later partners.)

I was loved and supported.

I was given all the education that was possible.

I was never confronted with gender bias, on the contrary.

In my family men and women are absulutely on the same level, each gender admires and supports the other.

I can't believe I was so lucky, to live with those beautiful, wonderful people.

My family has always resisted bias and discrimination, on all levels, also Hitler.
This almost cost my father his life, an incredibly brave and truthful man.

I don't understand to this day how my grandmother was never even touched by the SS with her open and bold resistance.

This is what you get when you raise a girl to be a brave woman, conscious of her value, her talents, her special gifts to this world, her responsibilty and her duty to make it a better, a more peaceful and compassionate place. With the good will to support the weaker ones.

I wish you all the braveness and confidence to give your girl a good start.

:heart: :hello:
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby bodom » Thu Jan 29, 2009 1:51 pm

I have one on the way. Im clueless about girls let alone raising one. Its gonna be crazy.

:namaste:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby Annapurna » Thu Jan 29, 2009 6:21 pm

Congratulations, BBB!

May she be happy, healthy and a joy in your life!

You say you are clueless about girls? Well, that is impopssible...

You got one of them pregnant!

(You must have done something right....) :smile:

Just don't break her selfconfidence. Like : Girls can't do this.

That's something I never heard.

My brother had to help in the household as much as I did, and he also learned to cook and bake.

The neighbor girl had to help her mom in the kitchen while her 2 brothers had leisure time instead.

She wept bitter tears about the privileges her brothers had, while she had to wipe their dirt up.

I even tried to speak to her parents about it, but her father insisted that men are too good for low work like kitchenstuff.

She felt humiliated and worthless.

I felt very sorry for her.

My parents and I then invited her out on many Sundays for lunch. That helped her a bit I think.

When she fell in love with an Afro American man, her father forbid him to set foot in the house.

Albeit she was 5 or 6 months pregnant, they found a clinic in UK to abort her unborn child.

She was broken hearted, told me they had forced her.

I 'll spare you the rest of the tragedy.



Anyhow, just treat your little girl like the apple of your eye, and a boy as well.

When will your little princess be born? :heart:
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby bodom » Thu Jan 29, 2009 6:29 pm

My little girl can choose to be whoever she wants to be. I would never hold her back from anything she wants in her life. She is do June 12th. 4 months to go!
Thank you for your blessings.

:namaste:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby AdvaitaJ » Sat Jan 31, 2009 1:46 am

First rule: don't turn your back on her or she'll grow up before you know it. :D Mine is now pursuing her Masters degree and teaching music. :smile:

While she was growing up, I deliberately bought all types of toys for her, "girl" toys and "boy" toys. She got doll houses and helicopters. Barbie dolls and bulldozers. I very specifically worked to ensure she did not place limits on her abilities. However, her Mother and I have the classic relationship where I go off to work every morning while her Mother stayed home. I always took care to supply the "muscle" for things around the house while her Mother, in a kind and loving way, made clear to all that I was incapable of doing laundry or loading the dishwasher. To the point, despite my overt attempts to ensure she never knew gender prejudice, she definitely picked some up from our examples. A classic case of doing what we do and not what we said!

Second rule: they are likely to turn out "just like you", so be mindful! Mine now has my old unfortunate tendency to pursue the acquisition of things in the belief they'll bring happiness. I'm now working on setting a better example! :meditate:

Regards: AdvaitaJ
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby Element » Sat Jan 31, 2009 7:19 am

I personally have little experience of sexism in my life. At least as an Australian, equality always was there. Women & men lack no freedoms or bounds.

As a Buddhist, the path is rooted in at least three things: (1) kalyanamitta or good friends; (2) yonisomanasikara or wise reflection; and (3) morality.

Whilst the pull of sense objects or aramana is very strong from the world, I think parents can aspire to (1) and hope to develop (2) & (3) in their children.

I think immorality is more easily performed by boys but more harmful to girls.

I think girls or young women have far more natural wisdom than boys. Thus, somehow, with the aramana outside, try to nurture the wisdom inside.

For example, girls can often be easily engaged by a sense of social justice and compassion. Thus, a family awareness of charity, sponsoring children, social inequity, etc, can nurture their natural wisdom sila. With wisdom sila engaged, reflection on more subtle aspects of morality, based in Buddhist way of reflection on harmfulness and harmlessness can be attempted.

Buddha's advice to his seven year old son about wise reflection is found in the Ambalatthika-Rahulovada Sutta.

I think if we hope to teach or impart anything upon our children, we must be kalyanamitta first and foremost. Intimate and engaged friendship.

In five ways, young householder, the parents thus ministered to as the East by their children, show their compassion:

(i) they restrain them from evil,
(ii) they encourage them to do good,
(iii) they train them for a profession,
(iv) they arrange a suitable marriage,
(v) at the proper time they hand over their inheritance to them.

Sigalovada Sutta
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby Annapurna » Sat Jan 31, 2009 7:50 am

As soon as I could read, I was given books a lot. It was the time of no computers.

I got specific books for girls as well as books about the cosmos and this planet, with it's natural wonders, animals, and people.

I got books about everything and that gave me a great advantage at school and I enjoyed that.

I was encouraged to get a good education, so I wouldn't have to put up with an unkind husband.

My parents were also very kind to animals, and taught me to be gentle and considerate with them. This has led to great friendships with animals who followed me around everywhere.

I think immorality is more easily performed by boys but more harmful to girls.


Aye. I believe so as well and when I met boys, I was equipped with everything that is necessary.

So blackmail like: "Hey, if you really love me then you have sex with me, or I'll go look for it elsewhere", made me remember that my parents said: "Remember a guy like this does NOT love YOU or else he will wait...." and enabled me to say just that....very important. Other girls were tricked like that and had their hearts broken.

Of course I had mine broken as well, but not over that.

So my parents asked me to wait for the right guy, and I did, and I don't regret that at all. :smile:
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby Annapurna » Sat Jan 31, 2009 8:17 am

I guess that all boils down to teaching a girl she is allowed to say : NO.

This is especially important in our times of sexual abuse and child rape.

I recall how my parents warned me already in kindergarten of evil people and how I should run away and ask adults for help in case that happens.

This may have saved my life or wellbeing already in kindergarten as well, as I was once urged by a stranger to come along with him, and instead I ran right back into the kindergarten and refused to walk home alone.

My parents had to pick me up.
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby Element » Sat Jan 31, 2009 10:09 am

Annabel wrote:I was once urged by a stranger to come along with him, and instead I ran right back into the kindergarten and refused to walk home alone.

This is an unfortunate reality. I remember when I was a boy. Once at the swimming pool, the tough boys teased me because I was dressing myself openly in the change room. They used to hide behind the lockers. So I started changing behind the lockers and one day a man said to me: "Why are you changing behind those lockers?"

I came out and this man showed me to the showers, gave me some soap and physically showed me how to clean my uncircumsised.......I dressed and was happy this man was kind to me. I never gave this event another thought until for some reason the memory popped out a few years ago. I realised and laughed: "That man was getting his cheap thrills".

Sad but true. Some with tendencies indeed lurk and roam around.
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby Annapurna » Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:53 pm

Wow, I'm glad it didn't traumatize you.
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby Element » Sun Feb 01, 2009 8:56 pm

Annabel wrote:Wow, I'm glad it didn't traumatize you.

As I said, I did not realise the significance at the time. He acted like a parent. I never gave it a second thought until a few years ago.

I now recall how the memory arose. In Australia, there is a high profile ex-football player, the only one openly gay. As a child/teenager, I would play against him & run against him at interschool athletic carnivals. He was in the media a few years ago when serving as a witness about a football massure who fondled him when he was 15 years.
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Sun Feb 01, 2009 9:53 pm

Element wrote:
Annabel wrote:Wow, I'm glad it didn't traumatize you.

As I said, I did not realise the significance at the time. He acted like a parent. I never gave it a second thought until a few years ago.

I now recall how the memory arose. In Australia, there is a high profile ex-football player, the only one openly gay. As a child/teenager, I would play against him & run against him at interschool athletic carnivals. He was in the media a few years ago when serving as a witness about a football massure who fondled him when he was 15 years.


Dear Element

No matter what I've tried to write it's just not going to come out right.
So I'll give a couple of smiley-hugs.

:hug: :hug:

Much metta to you
Drolma
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby Element » Mon Feb 02, 2009 12:09 am

Drolma wrote:No matter what I've tried to write it's just not going to come out right.

Hi Drolma

I must fully agree. You are reacting unnecessarily.

Whilst this event was nothing and has never registered one atom of dukkha, if we are interested in Dhamma, we need to have wisdom for events incomparably more challenging than that.

As an aside, there was a girl recently in America who was kidnapped and endured sexual abuse. Throughout the ordeal she reflected: "I am my parents daughter". She had self-respect. She had so much self-respect, the abuse was meaningless to her. She knew what love was and that she was loved.

If one has nurtured this sort of self-respect in their children, so children clearly understood good & bad and their wholesome qualities, one has certainly done exceptionally well, beyond expectations.

With metta

Element
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Re: Advice on raising girls

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Mon Feb 02, 2009 1:42 am

Element wrote:
Drolma wrote:No matter what I've tried to write it's just not going to come out right.

Hi Drolma

I must fully agree. You are reacting unnecessarily.

Whilst this event was nothing and has never registered one atom of dukkha, if we are interested in Dhamma, we need to have wisdom for events incomparably more challenging than that.


I am glad to hear it :smile:

As an aside, there was a girl recently in America who was kidnapped and endured sexual abuse. Throughout the ordeal she reflected: "I am my parents daughter". She had self-respect. She had so much self-respect, the abuse was meaningless to her. She knew what love was and that she was loved.

If one has nurtured this sort of self-respect in their children, so children clearly understood good & bad and their wholesome qualities, one has certainly done exceptionally well, beyond expectations.

With metta

Element


That is an uplifting story :thumbsup:
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