What You Should And Shouldn’t Be Saying To Close The Gender Gap

Raising boys and girls the same way is not just about letting girls play with action figures and boys playing with Barbie dolls. Treating boys and girls the same way is about teaching both boys and girls to be brave and confident in who they are. From a young age, boys are taught to take risks, be confident and to look out for themselves. They are taught to run around and to get a little dirty on the playground, all in the name of fun.

Girls are taught to be polite, wait their turn and to be perfect in all of their roles as mothers, daughters, employees, students and neighbors. And if they are not, they are shamed. The way we raise our girls doesn’t just affect each woman individually, it affects the nation and the world. By not treating boys and girls equally, we are ruining our world. Words matter and what you say to young boys and girls greatly affects the people they become and digs a wider gender gap.

“She’s bossy”
“He’s such a good leader”
“Wait your turn woman”
“Son, the time to act is now”
“Miss, be polite”
“Boy, take risks”
“Stop being a bitch”
“Don’t be afraid to get dirty”
“Strive for perfection”
“It’s okay to make mistakes”
“She’s such a whore”
“He’s such a lady’s man”
“Raise your hand”
“Shout it out”
“Be realistic”
“He’s got the whole world in his hands”
“You throw like a girl”
“His abilities are astounding”
“It’s too hard for you”
“You can do anything”
“You’d be prettier if…”
“You don’t need…”
“Know your place”
“Speak out”
“Wait until it’s the right time”
“Don’t stay in the same place”
“Sit still”
“Stand out”
“Slut”
“Confident flirt”
“Be loyal”
“Look out for yourself”
“Be perfect”
“Be brave”

Enough with the shaming and enough with the condescending remarks that constantly “put women in their place.” It’s time to treat boys and girls the same.

Photo by Believe in Your utopia on Unsplash

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