Sunday, March 13, 2011

Book Review: Bringing Up Girls

I have three boys and no girls, so why would I read a book subtitled "Practical advice and encouragement for those shaping the next generation of women"? I have to admit that I only read Bringing Up Girls because it was this month's book club book, but I never expected to love it. While the whole point of this book was to advise parents on how to raise their girls, I couldn't help but feel a huge responsibility in how I raise my boys because of it.

Some of the chapters discuss the desire of little girls to feel like princesses: valued, beautiful and pursued. Some of the chapters discuss purity (and the extremely dangerous repercussions of sexual promiscuity). Some of the chapters talked about the importance of a father's role in his daughter's life (and the unhealthy fillers she can turn to when that relationship isn't quite right). Some of the chapters talked about the brutality of girls towards each other (especially in middle and high school) and the hit their self-esteem takes when they are at the brunt of others' ridicule. It was hard being a teenage girl... I can only image how hard it would be to raise a teenage girl!

In reading about purity especially, I felt a huge calling to train my boys in how to treat women well. How to treat them like ladies and how to care for them as they would a little sister. Obviously Charlie's example to them will be of utmost importance as they grow into young men. With a culture today that emphasizes peer relationships over parental relationships, technology over talking and promiscuity over purity, our kids are in for a world of hurt if we aren't helping them navigate the rapids.

There was so much I could relate to in what Dr. Dobson described. I think today's culture wants to ignore the fact that women are different than men and that we have different needs, insecurities and hormones. It doesn't make us weaker, but it does make us different. Knowing how to raise our sons to care for these girls and women won't only make them better husbands, it will make them better people. I don't know about the other mothers of sons, but I'm all for training them to be understanding, protective, respectful and loving men and husbands. I think their future wives will thank us : )

In summary, whether or not you have a daughter, read this book. I can't wait to read the predecessor of it, Bringing Up Boys.


Jennifer said...

Im going to rent this from the library!

Janice said...

I've been wanting to read this book for awhile. Glad to know it's good! Can't wait to dive in:-)

Unknown said...

I got this book from my M-I-L for Christmas... I had forgotten about it! Glad you mentioned it to remind me to read it. :) Sounds like it'll be great!! I'm excited.