Am I Prettier?

Recently I was gazing into Eden’s sweet face… perhaps the most beautiful, searching eyes I have ever seen… and I just kept telling her over and over how perfectly lovely she is.

Then it occurred to me that all mothers must think their daughters are beautiful.

And then I chuckled to myself.

I remembered a story involving my mother and me, when I was probably in Kindergarten. It went something like this:

ME: Mommy, am I prettier than Amy? (names have been changed to protect the innocent)

MOM: Yes, you are prettier than Amy.

ME: Mommy, am I prettier than Sarah?

MOM: Yes, TJ, you are much prettier than Sarah.

ME: Mommy, am I prettier than Melissa?

MOM: (pause) Well, Melissa is a very pretty girl.

Ahh, my mother… apparently she was very committed to honesty  🙂

I wonder what I would do in a similar situation. I respect her for not lying to me, and she definitely did not have any warning that I would ask such a thing, so no time to prepare.

Now, having thought about it, I think I know what I’ll say if ever my daughter asks me a question like this. How do you think you would answer?

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4 responses to “Am I Prettier?

  • sharon

    Funny, I was just thinking about this today. Well, not exactly this, but that if we had a girl, I would actually not want her to be so pretty. I was thinking of all the pitfalls there are for pretty people to find too much value in their appearance.

    But in this case, maybe a mother could turn it around and ask her daughter why she’s asking (why do want me to compare you with others?), while affirming her (yes, i think you are pretty, but no matter what you look like, etc, etc.)

    • TJ Poon

      Thanks for your thoughts, Sharon! I think you’re right that there are many temptations for people to find value in their appearance, but I wouldn’t say that it’s only a problem for the pretty. The same can be said for the highly intelligent, successful, wealthy, creative, etc. Also, those who feel they are unlovely (or unintelligent, uncreative, unsuccessful) can put too much stock in those insecurities, as well, and miss embracing their God-given worth.
      I guess we are all tempted to put value where it should not be. Parents have an exceptionally difficult task in trying to encourage their children to build an identity based on the Lord rather than the thousands of other things vying for that position.

      Sobering.

    • TJ Poon

      Oh, also meant to say that I like how you would attempt to surface what is in her heart while still affirming her. You’re such a good mom! 🙂

  • Glennis

    That IS funny (and funny that you remember after all these years)…I can’t wait to meet your lovely daughter 🙂

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