A Letter to My Nieces (That I Shouldn’t Have to Write)

You are smart. You are beautiful. You are loved. As you grow into the extraordinary women you are destined to become, you will encounter people and obstacles that will try to tell you otherwise. Do not listen to them.

The world you were born into is designed to beat you down, keep you down, and criticize you for being there. It isn’t fair, and it isn’t right. This is why you have to be strong. Be aware. Be courageous.

You can be anything you want to be. Get your education. Read everything. A strong, open mind is your most valuable asset.

You both shine so bright, don’t let anybody try to dull that sparkle. You deserve respect, so demand respect. Do not let your thoughts and feelings get trampled on. Your voices are unique, they’re important, and they deserve to be heard. Speak up!

The beauty standards to which you will be held are impossible. They are ridiculous. They do not matter. The measure of your waist does not determine the measure of your worth. Do not make yourself small to make someone else feel big. It’s okay to take up space. You deserve to take up space.  You are radiant inside and out.

Remember that self-care is not selfish. Do not put the needs of others ahead of your own. You deserve to put yourself first.

You are not at fault for the shortcomings of men. They should be held to the same expectations as everyone else. “Boys will be boys” is not a valid excuse.

The “friendzone” is a myth. It does not exist. It’s just a way for men to blame women for exercising their right to say no.

YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO SAY NO.

CONSENT IS MANDATORY.

YOU ARE NOT AT FAULT FOR THE SHORTCOMINGS OF MEN.

You have so much love to give. Don’t worry about who you’re giving it to. Who you love should be the very least of your worries. It’s not who you love, but how you love. If it’s real and pure, the gender or race of the person you’re giving it to isn’t important. Celebrate love, in all of its forms.

It’s okay to get sad. It’s okay to get angry. It’s okay to be confused. Your feelings are valid.

Life is hard, and it’s messy. You will make mistakes. That’s okay! Mistakes are learning opportunities. Asking for help doesn’t make you weak, it makes you smart. Nobody can do this on their own. We are all learning and growing, all the time. We are all just works in progress. Embrace that.

Feminism is not a dirty word. Surround yourself with incredible women. Let them guide you. Stand up against girl on girl hate. There’s no right way to be a woman. Remind girls that we’re all in this together. Reach out to your sisters. Remember that empowered women empower women.

Stay humble & kind.

I’ll be here for you always.

Love,

Aunt Jordan

 

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