Here's a post from our partners at BabyCenter! Every week, we bring you the best parenting and lifestyle stories from the experts at BabyCenter, including this letter from a father to his daughter about beauty.
Right now your biggest concern in life is figuring out how to get around the child-proof locks on the kitchen cabinets, but one day you will deal with much bigger issues. Being a woman, one of these will be the problem of beauty and the emphasis put on it by nearly everyone in the world.
You will soon learn that the world is obsessed with beauty. As a woman, you will be bombarded with magazines, ads and commercials full of beautiful people telling you that you're not pretty enough as you are. I wish I could tell you to ignore all of that, but it's naïve of me to think you can go the rest of your life immune to the barrage of "beauty tips" thrown out by complete strangers.
There are lots of clichés out there about beauty. "Beauty is only skin deep," "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder," and so on, but as with most clichés, they say a lot but don't mean much. So here is some real, practical advice about beauty.
The definition of beauty is intentionally vague. Find your own meaning for it. Don't let somebody else define it for you.
From the day you were born, your mother and I have tried to tell you how beautiful you are. We have also tried to tell you how kind and caring you are. We value the last two much more than the first one.
One day somebody — it may even be one of your best friends — will tell you that something about you is ugly. Remember that just because one person says something negative about you doesn't mean everyone in the world feels that way. That works both ways, though. If you think somebody else is ugly, keep your mouth shut. Just because you think so doesn't mean somebody doesn't think he or she is the most beautiful person in the world.