|Originally posted by Arduinna
How can a child inherantly "want" to be big?
My dd says she wants to be big all the time, because she sees bigger kids doing things she can't do yet - riding skateboards, going on the big yellow school bus, etc. When she says these things, i remind her of all the wonderful things she can do right now, and talk about how exciting it is that she keeps learning new things and that there is so much to look forward to.
When the term "big girl" is used, it is usually used by my daughter herself, i.e. "I buttoned my dress all by myself, just like big girls do!" When I want to praise her for her maturity, I try to find other words, though, because I do sometimes worry that hearing "big girl" as praise will make her wonder, "What if I don't wait patiently next time, does that mean I'm not a big girl anymore?"
I do think it's terrible when the term is used in a shaming way - "Stop whining and act like a big girl," because it sends a clear message that the child herself is the problem rather than the behavior.