It is a truth universally acknowledged that raising girls is very very tricky.

When I was fifteen (that in itself explains a lot), my poor mother, at her wit’s end cursed me to have five girls, all just like me.

I’m sure those of us ‘wild child’ types can imagine just how our poor parents felt in those hair-pulling moments of raising stubborn, strong willed children.

Fast forward over ten years and I am now the proud mother of two beautiful, strong willed and stubborn little girls of my own. There will be no more breeding out of fear my mother’s prophecy comes true.

Now, I will note that of course I am drawing from my own experiences, and I am only a mother to daughters. But I wanted to share my reality of raising girls, something I’m sure a lot of mothers can relate to.

Even though you’re a girl yourself, you still have no f*cking idea.

I mean, hello I’m female? Surely, I know how to raise girls right!? Err nope. Periods, body hair, boobies, sex – I’m freaking out of here!

It’s expensive.

GIVE ME ALL THE TUTUS!!! Sorry mothers of boys, but girls’ clothes are WAY CUTER!!!

Whether it’s little tiny leather mocs, a handmade tutu dress that is in no way appropriate to wear ANYWHERE, or allllll the cat tees – SO. BLOODY. CUTE!!!


They vacate the womb knowing what they want.

So here I was, the soon to-be mother of daughters thinking that I had a few years to prepare for those teenage years my poor mother almost did not survive, no one mentioned the THREE-nager!

Not to mention the second-born who cannot even say a proper word, but can squeal at a high pitch when you so rudely disobey her order for the pink cup or choose the wrong outfit to put on her.

At just 18 months, she will pull her leopard jacket off the hanger and thrust it at me – girl knows what she wants!!

You feel immense pressure.

As a mother of daughters, I am so aware of the societal pressures woman face – body image being one of the major ones. I’ve now become so much more aware of how I perceive my own body and how it will impact on my girls.


Every day, I find myself checking my own thoughts and behaviours in relation to this! I want to be a role model to them and raise strong, confidence and self-loving young girls. And of course, that begins with how I see myself!

It’s a complicated relationship.

Oh, the mother-daughter bond – fuck me! No one can make you prouder or push your buttons harder (sometimes at the same time) than a smaller version of yourself! Whether they are 2 or 22!

LISTEN: Holly Wainwright and Andrew Daddo discuss, should we stop telling our girls they’re beautiful? (post continues after audio…)

They get it from their mama.

Raising a strong willed, opinionated, boundary pushing daughters? I wonder where on earth they got that from *looks around sheepishly*.

All those times I rolled my eyes at my mother, who to me just “DID NOT UNDERSTAND”!!! Only to realise now – she understands, she’s been there, she’s just trying to help, she knows best! Sorry MUM!!

Are you raising girls? What kinds of challenges are you dealing with?

This post originally appeared on House of White and was republished here with full permission. You can find more from Olivia over on her website, Facebook page and Instagram.

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Have you heard of This Glorious Mess, Mamamia’s excellent parenting podcast? Get it in your ears here.