PREVENT YOUNG GIRLS FROM DEVELOPING SELF HATE
Don't use skin color as an insult!!!
"I am sick and tired of your black a$$ ! Get me a belt!". " Ugh, your dumb black a$$". Constantly using skin color as a form of insulting, punishment, or control will only cause your daughter to grow up hating her skin color. Her confidence will be crushed if she constantly views her skin color in a negative light. Instead of using skin color as an insult, compliment the beauty of her skin complexion. Tell her how smooth and clear her skin is while mentioning how blessed she is to have such gorgeous skin. This will teach her to appreciate and love the skin she is in.
Don't make negative comments about or make fun of dark skin!!!
For example, the phrase, "you better stay out of the sun before you get any darker!" should never come out of your mouth. This will cause your daughter to dread the idea of becoming even one shade darker. She may go as far as refusing to go to the beach due to fear of sun expouser. Your daughter needs to be reminded that there is nothing wrong with being a darker shade of brown.
Don't put creamy crack, relaxers, & weave on a pedestal!!!
Young girls always seeing mommy with lovely straight hairstyles will naturally trigger her desire to have the same. Your child will think there is something wrong with her hair if mommy complains and dislikes her own hair in its natural state.
Don't complain about doing her hair!!!
"Oh my gosh! Your hair is too thick!", "Girl I can't wait until you get older so you can get a perm!", "GOOOOOD LORD your hair is nappy!", "Ugh your hair is too hard to do, not manageable at all!" There is no way that these comments aren't detrimental to your daughter's confidence. Instead of criticizing your daughter’s hair, be conscious about your word choices. Try to uplift her and teach her to love her hair texture so that she grows up embracing her natural beauty. Similarly, don't put weaves in your child's hair at a young age because she will soon feel the need to cover her natural hair at all times and will develop a dependence on hair attatchments.
Instead of being upset about being the only race in the world with this unique hair texture, tell her how lucky she is that she has a hair texture that can compliment so many different hairstyles. Focus on creating natural hair styles for your daughter to wear. If your daughter is stuck on the idea that "black people's hair doesn't grow" show her YouTube videos of long natural hair that will encourage her to take care of her own. This will boost your daughter's confidence in miraculous ways.
Less media influences!!!
This is one of the biggest things to look out for because the media has a big influence over our lives nowadays. The media indirectly depicts lighter skin and straighter hair as more beautiful. Although there is nothing wrong with this body image, constant exposure to this kind of media will make your daughter strive to be like these people who have fame, popularity, beauty, riches, men and seemingly perfect lives.
Also, many rap music videos show African American men flaunt about having all the women in the world. Most of them being a lighter skin complexion. If your daughter constantly hears these things she will feel like there is only one acceptable form of beauty. Black women are depicted negatively on TV too. They play the role of women that are loud, ghetto, obnoxious, rude, and "too independent". Having these stereotypes shoved on your daughter's shoulders can be stressful. I'm not saying cut off your daughter's TV and music access, but make sure she is reminded that everyone is unique and there is more than one form of beauty.
Teach her about her history by showing her famous, influential, African Americans as apposed to Beyoncé and Rihanna. This gives your daughter something to be proud of so she can understand that she derives from excellence. Show her how these women paved the way for her to be great. Teach your daughter about Rosa Parks as well as less talked about, influential African Americans like Madam C.J Walker because her contributions are just as important.
Compliments!!! Be Positive!!!
One can never receive to many compliments. Tell her, "you are so blessed to have this beautiful thick hair people would kill for it", "baby your skin is so beautiful", "You are so smart, you can accomplish anything you put your mind to", etc. You don't want some little boy being the first person that your daughter hears these compliments from. If she hears these things from you first then she won't be so naive and shocked when a boy takes interest in her. If she ever has boy troubles as a child make sure that you let her know that the boy that upset her is 1 boy out of trillions and trillions and trillions of other boys and it isn't the end of the world. She is a queen and should be treated as such. Without this knowledge she will run into many boys that treat her bad and without a doubt will crush her self esteem.
Make sure your daughter has other African American friends!!!
Total seclusion from other ethnicities is uneccassary but African American interaction is key so she can relate to someone. If your daughter attends a predominantly white school try involving her in African American groups outside of school like Jack and Jill of America Incorperated so that she can develop black pride.
Allow her to get involved in activities and take on leadership roles such as basketball, chorus, art, horseback riding, summer camp, cheerleading, piano, and student council. Your daughter will learn that she has a purpose and a unique contribution to the world. She will also learn ambition, discipline, how to get along with different types of people and skills that can be applied to the real world. Encourage your daughter to speak up and give her opinion in circumstances such as group discussions, when talking to friends, and in school because she'll learn to be outspoken. She will start valuing her own opinion more and not be scared to speak up.