How to talk to your daughter about her body

How to talk to your daughter about her body. Step one: don’t talk to your daughter about her body, except to teach her how it works.

Don’t say anything if she’s lost weight. Don’t say anything if she’s gained weight.

If you think your daughter’s body looks amazing, don’t say that. Here are some things you can say instead:

“you look healthy!” is a great one.

Or how about, “you’re looking strong.”

“I can see how happy you are – you’re glowing.”

Better yet, compliment her on something that has nothing to do with her body.

Don’t comment on other woman’s bodies either. Nope. Not a single comment, not a nice one or a mean one.

Teach her about kindness towards others, but also kindness towards yourself.

Don’t you dare talk about how much you hate your body in front of your daughter, or talk about your new diet. In fact, don’t go on a diet in front of your daughter. Buy healthy food. Cook healthy meals. But don’t say “I’m not eating carbs right now.” Your daughter should never think that carbs are evil, because shame over what you eat only leads to shame about yourself.

Encourage your daughter to run because it makes her feel less stressed. Encourage your daughter to climb mountains because there is nowhere better to explore your spirituality than the peak of the universe. Encourage your daughter to surf, or rock climb, or mountain bike because it scares her and that’s a good thing sometimes.

Help your daughter love soccer or rowing or hockey because sports make her a better leader and a more confident woman. Explain that no matter how old you get, you’ll never stop needing good teamwork. Never make her play a sport she isn’t absolutely in love with.

Prove to your daughter that women don’t need men to move furniture.

Teach your daughter how to cook kale.

Teach your daughter how to bake chocolate cake made with six sticks of butter.

Pass on your Mom’s recipe for Christmas morning coffee cake. Pass on your love being outside.

Maybe you and your daughter both have thick thighs or wide ribcages. It’s easy to hate these non-size zero body parts. Don’t. Tell your daughter that with her legs she can run a marathon if she wants to, and her ribcage is nothing but a carrying case for strong lungs. She can scream and she can lift up the world, if she wants.

Remind your daughter that the best thing she can do with her body is to use it to mobilize her beautiful soul.

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  • Awwwwwww! I love this article, Ms.T! Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your heart to your readers. I can still remember what you told me a few months ago: Your daughter is more important than the plastic cover.

    You really are the coolest mom! Idol kita, Ms.T!!!


  • hi tina,

    i came across your blog a few minutes ago when i googled this person with an amazing body, and i could not not resist leaving a comment to this post as it really hit a raw nerve. i grew up with a mom who has the frame of a typical chinese (small and thin). i, on the other hand, inherited my fat genes from my dad’s side (not chinese). although my mother had good intentions, she constantly reminded me, in not so subtle ways, of how i needed to lose weight. i am now approaching middle age and have a severe weight problem. looking back , i could count my mom’s nagging about my weight has definitely made things worse for me.

    i am going to keep this post i mind just in case i get to have a daughter.


  • Nice post. I have a 7 yr older and she’s training in taekwondo. And she loves it! Daughters are ♥ in little packages.

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