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DD is beautiful and odd though it sounds this is becoming a problem

(27 Posts)
stormforce10 Mon 26-Nov-12 18:56:48

Honestly I'm not trying to boast I'm actually after advice.

DD is 7. she is stunning and its not just me saying it. Random strangers stop in the street to tell her / me how pretty she is. We've even had people asking to photograph her as she's so beautiful. a couple of days ago a woman came up to us and asked if she'd considered child modelling and pressed a card into my hand

This may sound like a really good situation but DD knows and is starting to take loads of interest in her appearance, shows off about it to friends and keeps telling people she's prettier than they are. In other words its gone to her head.

Hell whatever way I post this it sounds awful. I'm worried, she should be doing normal happy 7 year old things not worrying about her looks. I don't want her to get into the world of modelling and I don't want her worrying about her hair style or whether i'd still love her if she looked different sad

I love her so so much she, ds and dp are my world


RooneyMara Mon 26-Nov-12 18:58:17

You don't sound awful at all. Honestly - it doesn't sound like a boast.

I've no advice but hope someone else does...don't worry, no one will flame you for being concerned.

Tailtwister Mon 26-Nov-12 19:28:52

I don't think you're boasting either. Some children are stunningly attractive and it's not always a good thing as you're finding out.

It's completely natural for her to pick up on the attention and also for her to boast about it to her friends. I'm not really sure how to avoid that, but personally I would try to steer her towards some time consuming hobbies. Is she interested in any particular sports or maybe brownies? Something where she can channel her efforts, but where it's not just her appearance which is valued?

Hopefully someone will come on with some better advice, but I don't think you're unreasonable to be a bit concerned.

stormforce10 Mon 26-Nov-12 20:21:06

Thank you both for being understanding

She loves ballet but sadly a lot of that seems to be driven by appearance. I won't stop her doing it though as she genuinely enjoys the exercise and the music. she's also recently started Brownies and I'm,really hoping that as you say this will give her more practical things to think about.

She's fairly good at school and has lots of friends but I feel she's starting to drive some of them away purely and simply because of this problem.

I don't dress her to impress in case you wondered. The model scout (if that is what she was)stopped us while she was wearing her school uniform with her hair plaited back

Chubfuddler Mon 26-Nov-12 20:38:17

I think you need to try to impress on her that being beautiful, nice as it is, is no reflection of her character and not really a feature to take pride in. She hasn't done anything to deserve or cause it - unlike being kind, a good friend, loyal etc. there's nothing wrong with her liking being pretty, the problem is some very beautiful people think it is a substitute for a personality.

I'm not suggesting your dd is a bad person in any way, she's a very young child in a world where sadly looks count. But they don't count for everything - and a stunning seven year old may end up a very gawky fourteen year old. She should value herself for more than just her looks or later life could be difficult.

MahnaMahna Tue 27-Nov-12 11:02:52

I completely understand where you are coming from. This is going to sound strange.. but my DD is only 6 months old and she is beautiful. We are in a similar situation with people coming up to us in shops and cafes, everywhere really.

Although she is only young she already knows that she likes the attention. She grins at everyone and flutters her eyelashes at them. At the moment it's obviously not causing any issues, but I have worried that when she gets older she'll think she can get away with things because she's cute. I really don't want her to grow up image obsessed either.

Maybe you could show you DD that beauty is what's inside. Get her to help out/ volunteer somewhere with you. I intend to do that with DD when she's older (mostly because I'm a big hippy.) I want her to learn that other people don't have what she has. I'm sure your DD will be fine. You just have to help her see that it's what's inside that counts smile

McPhee Tue 27-Nov-12 11:16:02

I have this problem with 5 month old Dd, and I find it embarrassing tbh. She's got the most amazing blue eyes.....and I've told her if this carries on she'll have to wear a big floppy hat grin

MahnaMahna Tue 27-Nov-12 11:17:29

mcphee They really do know don't they smile

DD gets all cute in front of people for the attention, then she'll give me a look as if to say 'what are you going to do about it?' The little monkey!

McPhee Tue 27-Nov-12 11:19:49

Yes!! shock

Sometimes I'm guilty of pulling the pram hood over, just so I can get shopping done in peace blush

timetosmile Tue 27-Nov-12 11:23:27

Start finding fiction/non fiction for you to read together, or movies where the heroines have huge character, moral strength etc.

Make a big effort to praise her character and skills - everytime someone says something about her appearance, say "yes, she's got lovely eyes, and she's a big help to me/great at dancing/ a really loyal friend...."

Start to talk about women in the public eye - how some stunningly beautiful celebrities whose profile is based on 'looks' have personal lives that are falling apart if you believe the mags

And be there for her when mean seven year olds are, well, mean.

You sound a really caring mum - that's prabably the best reassurance it will all turn out ok smile

unexpectediteminbaggingarea Tue 27-Nov-12 11:56:25

what about less girly activities? Perhaps also doing things that aren't so based on looks (ballet, like you say, is a very 'pretty' sort of activity) and are mixed boys and girls?

Are you very pretty? (I understand you might not want to answer 'yes' on a forum grin ) She may want to be like you if people comment on your looks very often. Do you comment on other people's looks? I suppose I'm just wondering if looks are considered important in your house or not.

As a little story, my mum was a very beautiful girl and young woman. She still shudders when she thinks of it because she always had people paying her way too much attention and it made her incredibly shy and very unhappy. She began actively trying to look less pretty and eventually did a job which was as far away from caring about looks as possible. It did make her work very hard to prove that she was intelligent and she ended up very highly qualified but she went through a lot of unhappy years to get there. It can indeed be a burden rather than a blessing.

orangepudding Tue 27-Nov-12 12:06:28

My oldest dd is very pretty too and has often been told she is. She is a child model and in all honesty spending time with other kids who are also beautiful has I think prevented her from becoming big headed about her looks!

elfycat Tue 27-Nov-12 12:25:04

We have this too with both DDs. The nearly 4 year old has amazing curls in her hair mine is dead straight envy and she and the 2 year old are blonde with big blue eyes and tall. Last week someone commented on how beautiful they both were not how well behaved I might add.

A friend keeps saying how I should get them into modelling despite my numerous comments that I can't be bothered with all that running around I don't want them focusing on looks. DD1 seems quite embarrassed by the attention and asks people to stop as she's quite shy and I don't want this to be a source of distress for her. My Dsis was very pretty and she would be every so slightly bullied and slighted by other women based on this.

My not-so-secret plan is similar to timetosmile's - strong female characters in film and books. Also to encourage her at sports and clubs where achievement would be based on abilities.

Pyrrah Wed 28-Nov-12 00:25:32

I wouldn't totally rule out the idea of doing some child modelling.

Nothing like discovering that it's boring and hard-work - and that there are other equally lovely kids out there who may be picked before you - to put looks in perspective.

She might also be able to put some money away towards university.

You could always go the 'pony' route otherwise... wink

Marzipanface Wed 28-Nov-12 00:38:10

You tell her to stop showing off surely? You are the parent. You explain to her that personality and being kind is far more important.

I would lose my shit if I heard my daughter talking like this to her friends. It's horrid and bullying.

And yes, despite me and DH being average looking, somehow our daughter is cute, and I have spent many months gritting my teeth and flaming with embarrassment because people have stopped us in the street to tell us how lovely she is. Most recent incident was the photographer at nursery raving about her. Most unprofessional and v cringeworthy as there was a queue of other mums standing with their offspring witnessing my discomfort.

spookycat909 Wed 28-Nov-12 01:04:52

Add my unbearably vain 5 year-old DD to the beautiful daughters list. I have to say, I take great joy in it - she's what the expression «pays for dressing»was made for - she'd look good in a bin bag! Odd though, cos me and DH are both fairly ugly.....

cory Wed 28-Nov-12 07:50:35

Remember that you don't have to have anything to do with the world of modelling etc, you can reinforce good manners to your dd whatever strangers say in the street, and it won't last forever.

Just clamp down on what she says and don't accept it as something inevitable: the world is full of pretty girls and intelligent girls and popular girls and most of them learn quite quickly not to be rude.

As for the world of ballet it won't be at all long now before it becomes less about looking pretty in tutus and more about Hard Work. The most admired girl at dd's ballet school was a rather plain looking girl with (I believe) scoliosis of the spine- but she could dance! You won't get a lead role just by looking pretty unless the ballet school is very badly run. And there are examinations that certainly have nothing to do with looks. So I'd encourage ballet. It is a salutary lesson to find that even on the stage other people prefer watching somebody who hasn't got the looks but has put in the work.

stormforce10 Wed 28-Nov-12 22:13:44

Thank you all of you. There are some really useful points here.

Of course I tell her not to talk like that to her friends and explain its not kind. I've talked to her teacher as well and they've done some sessions in class around the theme of what is on the inside being what matters. Sadly its just not sinking in with her.

Today a complete stranger came up to us on the bus asked her her name and then said "well stormforce10junior you are really beautiful, you should ask your mummy to let you go on the front of a magazine". Things like this really DO NOT helpsad

I'll keep battling away

stormforce10 Wed 28-Nov-12 22:15:15

Oh spookycat - dp and I are not exactly what you'd call gorgeous either. We obviously have good genes but they skipped a generation in us grin

FergusSingsTheBlues Wed 28-Nov-12 22:16:42

Take her own a peg or two when she gets cocky. My mum was a genius at that.

cory Wed 28-Nov-12 22:45:06

About your daughter's own comments, I think you need to step up a bit. You have explained that it is not nice and she persists in doing it. In other words, she is being disobedient and a little discipline wouldn't come amiss. Do whatever you would do if she insisted on using swearwords or anything else she knew she was not allowed to do. Pull her up every time.

As for the attention in the street, that will dry up shortly: I think she will find very few people comment openly on the looks of an older child. And there is ime very little correlation between beauty and appeal to boys, so you may not need to worry about undue attention in her early teens either.

rhetorician Wed 28-Nov-12 22:48:20

I sympathise too, as we have this (up to a point) with dd1 who is nearly 4. I guess your dd is a bit old for The Paper Bag Princess? It's a great book for driving home the message that kindness and having your wits about you are more important than looks. And has the best last line of any children's book I know.

PortoDude Wed 28-Nov-12 22:56:54

Well I guess it depends on whether you really want to address it, or if you secretly love all the attention? I think you really need to clamp down on the queen bee stuff. She is of the age where girls can get most unpleasant. There is many a thread about it on here.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 28-Nov-12 22:57:12

Enjoy her beauty, you never know what's round the corner, chicken pox and teenage hormones can play havoc. Safe when she's with you and you can handle any comments and attention from strangers, useful to be confident but sensible when out with other people in the event of drawing attention. Keep her grounded by praising accomplishments where hard work has paid off, urge normal 7 year old activities, nurture friendships in case the old "tall poppy" syndrome rears its head. Get her to say "thank you" when complimented - good manners are a bonus, lovely within and without. She shouldn't be adversely affected by being blessed in the looks department.

coldcupoftea Thu 29-Nov-12 10:03:28

We have the issue that 4yo DD1 is stunning- very striking blonde curly hair, big blue eyes, very happy confident sunny personality that tends to draw people to her, while 2yo DD2, also just as gorgeous in my eyes, has straight brown hair, is rather chubby and is very suspicious of people she doesn't know so usually just scowls at them. DD1 attracts so many comments when we're out, and she loves it, she grins and twirls, while DD2 just hides and acts grumpy. I know DD2 is too young to really notice at the moment, but I do worry what it will be like in a few years for her sad

When DD1 makes comments that she is pretty, or that so-and-so said her hair makes her very special I try to tell her that everyone is different, everyone is special and also that it's not nice to show off! Also when people ask me about DD1 and say how beautiful she is, I always make a point of saying something like 'yes, I have two beautiful girls'.

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