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From me to you, highlighting challenges faced by girls



Hey there! My name is Terynn and I am the proud 42-year-young mother of three dear daughters (born 2002, 2004 and 2006) who are the inspirations for this blog. We live in Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia, Canada. If our hometown sounds familiar you are likely a Sidney Crosby fan, a Trailer Park Boys fan or have heard of Rehtaeh Parsons, the 17-year-old girl whose tragic death has thrust victim-blaming into the spotlight.

Growing up playing sports and not being a lover of Barbies and dresses, I constantly experienced challenges simply because I was a girl. I felt pressured to act and look a certain way simply because I was a girl. I didn’t like it then and I certainly don’t like that these same challenges and pressures still exist for my daughters.

The defining moment…

In 2012 I found a book in my daughter’s backpack. The back cover was blue and the front cover had an illustration of a boy sailing on the ocean in rough waters. It was entitled Stories for Boys. When my daughter saw me with the book, she blushed and quickly placed it back into her backpack. She confided that she was embarrassed that the book she had chosen from the school library was “for boys”. That was a defining moment for me. Although we had had many discussions about the ludicrous societal expectations and rules based on gender, I knew then I had to make it abundantly clear that she had nothing to be ashamed of. Girls can read adventure stories.

This is when Dear Daughters was born!

What I Want Readers to Learn from Dear Daughters

I want to show that strong, confident, successful women have always and will continue to exist in all areas of life. I want to introduce the struggles (new and old) faced by women and how close (or how far) we are to eliminating gender bias in the world. I want everyone to remember that every woman is somebody’s daughter. I want to show that gender bias occurs on a daily basis, and often we are unaware it is happening.

What I Don’t Want Readers to Take Away from Dear Daughters

I do not want people thinking that this is a male-bashing, men-are-no good-and-we-don’t-need-them-at-all type of blog. It is quite the opposite really. The hypermasculinization of boys and men in our society plays a huge role in the gender bias towards girls and women. We need to fix the ridiculous societal expectations and rules we have in place for boys and men just as much as we do the ones for girls and women.

What challenges do girls and women face on a daily basis?

1. The sexualization of their bodies and the importance that is put on their appearance. Girls and women are viewed as objects and/or possessions, increasing the likelihood that they will become victims of sexual and/or physical abuse and then ridiculed and blamed for what happened to them (victim-blaming).

This Film Shows What it Would Be Like to be a Man if Today’s Roles Were Reversed
7 Super Bowl Commercials That Don’t Get It #NotBuyingIt
A Short Video Demonstrating How Media Fails Women

2. The tendencies of people to try to “protect” girls and to impose limitations in their lives. Girls and women are not encouraged to be active, competitive and/or aggressive. They are constantly stereotyped and encouraged to fulfill caring and nurturing roles.

I Cannot Believe My Ears…Isn’t It 2013
13-year-old Convinces Hasbro to Create A Gender Neutral Easy Bake Oven
Your Votes Are in on Girly Girl

3. Being second-class citizens. Being a girl or doing anything “like a girl” is a negative thing.

“Like A Girl” Shouldn’t Be a Bad Thing
Mythbusters Tests the “Throws Like a Girl” Insult

4. Inequalities – Less pay for the same work. Denied or limited access to education. Arranged marriages. The list goes on and on.

14-year-old Malala Yousafzaui Was Shot For Promoting Education For Girls
It is Hard to Believe Women are Still Denied Access To Education in the Year 2012

Where to find me

When I am not writing, I am coaching soccer and ringette, playing hockey and serving as chauffeur to my three dear daughters. You can follow Dear Daughters on Twitter @DearDaughters, me on Twitter @writerbychoice1 and Instagram @writerbychoice and Dear Daughters on Facebook at

Dear Daughters, Olympic Women’s Hockey Starts Tomorrow!

Posted by on Feb 7, 2014 in Olympics, Women in Sport | 0 comments

Dear Daughters, Women’s Olympic Hockey starts tomorrow and as you can imagine, I cannot wait! There are two games tomorrow both from Group A. The USA plays Finland at 4am AST and Canada plays Switzerland at 9am AST. There has only been one time in Olympic history that a Women’s Gold medal game has not featured Canada vs the United States and that was in the 2006 Games when Sweden upset the United States 3-2 in the semi-final. Canada beat Sweden in the final 4-1. The United States beat Finland 4-0 to win the bronze. There has been...

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Dear Daughters, Meet Canada’s Female Olympic Athletes

Posted by on Feb 7, 2014 in Olympics, Women in Sport | 0 comments

Dear Daughters, Canada is sending its biggest winter Olympic team ever – 221 team members, 100 of them female! Here are the 100 Canadian female athletes representing our country in Sochi 2014. Women’s Hockey (Defending Olympic Gold Medalists) 1. Mélodie Daoust (Quebec) 2. Laura Fortino (Ontario) 3. Brianne Jenner (Ontario) 4. Geneviève Lacasse (Quebec) 5. Jocelyne Larocque (Manitoba) 6. Lauriane Rougeau (Quebec) 7. Natalie Spooner (Ontario) 8. Jennifer Wakefield (Ontario) 9. Tara Watchorn (Ontario) 10. Haley Irwin (Ontario) 11....

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Dear Daughters, Meet the Guardian Princesses – A New Kind of Princess!

Posted by on Feb 4, 2014 in Books, Entertainment, Marketing, Toys/Literature | 2 comments

Dear Daughters, The Guardian Princesses book series is redefining princesses! Move over Cinderella, Ariel and Snow White, these princesses aren’t sitting around waiting for their Prince Charming – they are saving the world. The Guardian Princesses are: Princess Vinnea, Guardian of Plant Life Princess TenTen, Guardian of The Skies Princess Saya, Guardian of Lakes and Rivers Princess Leilani, Guardian of The Healing Forests Princess Terra, Guardian of The Land Princess Mariana, Guardian of The Sea Princess Aniya, Guardian of Animals...

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Dear Daughters, 6 Super Bowl Commercials That Got it Right

Posted by on Feb 3, 2014 in Food/Beverages, Marketing, Other | 0 comments

Dear Daughters, Here are some Super Bowl commercials who left out the sexism and made creative, effective commercials. “Come On Bring the Toys” by Intuit QuickBooks for GoldieBlox “America is Beautiful” by Coca Cola “Time Machine” by Doritos “Empowering” by Microsoft “Gracie” by Cheerios “Lip Reading” by McDonald’s Share this:Share on...

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Dear Daughters, 7 Super Bowl Commercials That Don’t Get It #NotBuyingIt

Posted by on Feb 3, 2014 in Food/Beverages, Hypermasculinization, Marketing, Movements/Organizations, Other, Sexualization of Women, Society Says | 0 comments

Dear Daughters, “Southwest Patty Melt” by Carl Jr’s and Hardee’s (banned) Scarlett Johanssen for SodaStream (banned by Fox) “Romance” by Chevy Silverado Romance is one man with numerous women? “Wings” by Volkswagen Apparently Volkswagen engineers are all male. “Doghouse” by Subaru Male driver, mesmerized by female’s body reinforcing the stereotype that men are merely sexually driven animals, and jealous female partner. M & M’s “Amish Paradise” by Doritos...

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Dear Daughters, The Super Bowl is Tomorrow and We are Ready With the #NotBuyingIt App

Posted by on Feb 1, 2014 in Marketing, Movements/Organizations, Other, Society Says | 0 comments

Dear Daughters, I received a newsletter from Jennifer Siebel Newsom of The Representation Project with an update on the effectiveness of the #NotBuyingIt campaign and how you can participate during the Super Bowl. Tomorrow more than 100 million people will tune in to watch the Super Bowl – the most watched United States media event for women, men and children. She says , “Despite the fact that so many of us watch, the Super Bowl and its accompanying commercials continually fail to represent who we truly are. The representations of...

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Dear Daughters, Canada Sending Record Setting 100 Female Athletes to 2014 Olympics

Posted by on Jan 30, 2014 in Olympics, Women in Sport | 0 comments

Dear Daughters, Of the 221 members of Team Canada set to compete this February in the Winter Olympics in Sochi, 100 of those athletes are females. This is the highest number of females ever sent to a Winter Olympics for Canada. 221 is also the biggest ever Canadian Winter Olympic team. 88 women competed on a team of 202 athletes in the 2010 Winter Games, 86 women competed on a team of 196 in the 2006 Winter Games, 65 women competed on a team of 150 in the 2002 Winter Games, and 63 women competed on a team of 144 in the 1998 Winter Games which...

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Dear Daughters, We are #NotBuyingIt SodaStream and Scarlett Johansson

Posted by on Jan 30, 2014 in Food/Beverages, Marketing, Movements/Organizations, Sexualization of Women, Society Says | 0 comments

Dear Daughters, I am not famous so maybe there is something I am missing, but I am thinking that with the influence celebrities have over people, they would have the most influence in changing society’s rape culture and sexual objectification of girls and women. It is true that I do not understand the demands and pressures celebrities are under which hinders my ability to assess how easy this change would be to make. I am, however, a fan of many of these celebrities (notably Sandra Bullock, Ellen DeGeneres, Jennifer Lawrence, Melissa...

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Dear Daughters, Here is How to Use the New #NotBuyingIt App

Posted by on Jan 28, 2014 in Marketing, Movements/Organizations, Society Says | 3 comments

Dear Daughters, I first had to upgrade my iphone to the new iOS 7 operating system before I could download the new #NotBuyingIt app, created by The Representation Project – FOR FREE! The upgrade was worth it though because now I have the power to stop the sexual objectification of women at my fingertips. The first step in the fight against something wrong is to identify it, then to educate ourselves and others, and then to TAKE ACTION! This app allows us to do all three! And so easily! Together we can change what is wrong in the media....

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Dear Daughters, Why It IS Sexist To Say Boys Should Never Play With Dolls

Posted by on Jan 25, 2014 in Marketing, Society Says, Toys/Literature | 0 comments

Dear Daughters, Yesterday I came across a link on the Let Toys Be Toys Facebook page to an article entitled Why it’s not sexist to say boys should never play with dolls. And here is my response: Even before they were “steered towards a traditionally male profession to prove some dubious political point” girls and women have been naturally inclined to want to choose. Hayley Wickenheiser wanted to play hockey. Amelia Earhart wanted to fly planes. Jeannette Rankin wanted to work in politics. Malala Yousafzai is certainly not...

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