The Problem with Princesses: Princess Recovery by Jennifer L. Hartstein, PsyD - Page 2
It is this realization--that Chloë became her own person because her caregivers did not embrace the princess fantasy--that convinced me that those questioning that role being foisted upon our girls were on the right track. It is the responsibility of the adults in a child’s life to ensure that she will be more than just skin deep as she grows up.
Psychologist Jennifer L. Hartstein begins Princess Recovery with an explanation of “Princess Syndrome,” comparing princesses with heroines, particularly the differences in their values and attitudes, and continues her introduction with guidance on how to use Princess Recovery. In discussing the problematic lessons girls learn, Hartstein includes lessons that are learned from their parents and caregivers, not just the media.
By outlining the problems “princesses” have, Hartstein alerts the reader to the dangers and disappointments that are the results of producing a princess. She offers solid advice on countering the images, both obvious and subtle, that affect the way girls see themselves and the world, but does not promote life in a bubble, attempting to protect girls from all outside influences. In the second chapter, Hartstein offers advice and support to parents who are interested in their daughters becoming self-realized women.
In the remaining chapters, Hartstein offers up “Princess Symptoms” (such as “Surface over Substance”) and the corresponding “Heroine Value” (“Being Who You Are”), and concludes with “Living Happily Ever After.” She ends Princess Recovery with suggestions for “Children’s Books for Heroines” and “Healthy Princess Play Ideas.”
The difference between a princess and a heroine may not be as simple as the difference between Kim Kardashian and Sandra Bullock, but allowing your child to be more than a princess allows her to discover her many aspects, including being a princess one day and a farm hand the next.