“Dear Ijeawele”

“Dear Ijeawele” was short read but was very powerful to me. I found myself taking notes on the suggestions she was giving so I could later use these for myself or even my future children. I agree with what Morgan said in her post about how some of the suggestions are values that we have to unlearn ourselves. Suggestion 12 about sex resonated with me because this is something my own mother and I have recently been doing with each other. I wish she and I had open discussions about sex and sexuality when I was younger, but I am very grateful that she has opened up to the idea about having these types of conversations. I also liked suggestion 8 about rejecting likeability. It made me reflect on when I was younger and how upset I would get when I learned that people did not like me. I felt as thought I had to prove to them that I was likeable, but now it is no longer a concern I have because I know that not matter what I do, what I look like, or what I say, I will always make someone upset by being myself.

List of suggestions:

  1. be a full person
  2. do it together
  3. gender roles are nonsense
  4. reject feminism lite
  5. teach her to read and love books
  6. question language
  7. marriage is not an achievement
  8. reject likeability
  9. sense of identity
  10. be deliberate about appearance
  11. question culture’s selective use of biology for “reasons” for social norms
  12. Talk about sex and start early
  13. let romance happen
  14. do not turn oppressed into saints
  15. teach about differences