Raising Daughters: “Girly Things”

Yesterday, as soon as Bella got off the bus and started trudging across the road, I knew from the look on her face that something was wrong. Not seriously wrong but “oh hell, begin the whining in three, two, one…” wrong. “Mommy,” she pleaded as if she’d already asked her question, “can you puh-lease get me a new backpack? Everyone makes fun of it.” “Who’s everyone?” “Jasmin*.” “Just her?” “Yes.” “What does she say?” “That it’s for boys.” “And now you need a new one? Because of that?” – she nods emphatically- “No, you can’t get another bookbag, not …