I finished Fenelon’s book on rearing daughters and I thoroughly enjoyed most of it. Such keen insights, such deep moral truths and such practical applications.
I found in my library a book I picked up at a garage sale titled “Celebrating Girls,” and decided to read it. The Author, Virginia Beane Rutter is a psychotherapist although I doubt she is a Christian. There are some practical things that I thought were really good. I’ll include one here.
“Every morning when I was a girl, from kindergarten through fourth grade, my mother braided my long, thick brown hair. She made one braid on either side of my face and then pinned them across the top of my head, where they made a crown. I loved this daily ritual; the feel of her hands combing the tangled hair, the soft tugs that made the braids smooth, the snug fit of the braids as they were pinned with small bobby pins, just so. The result – a shiny crown with all the pins hidden from sight; is memorialized in my happy smiling fourth-grade photograph. My mother’s loving and careful hands performed a wonderful ritual of adornment, of preparation for the day. It is an intimacy that I have always treasured.
Teaching your daughter to groom and care for her hair is a way to express love and respect for her femininity. Symbolically, it is also a way to honor her mind, her thoughts, her fantasies……… As you help her wash, comb, or braid her hair, express your respect for the power of her mind. Talk to her. By listening attentively to what she has to say from the beginning, you will teach her to trust her feminine intelligence, which includes both her body and intuition.”