A Letter to My Daughter about Self-Image

self image

I have two daughters. The oldest is 16 years old and is right in the middle of teenager-dom. The other is 9 and sneaking up on the tween years. As a young woman, there are struggles between still wanting to be a kid and growing into an adult. One of the main challenges is their self-image. And it starts at way too early an age, if you ask me. As I watch each of my daughters grow, memories creep in of the never-ending wars in my mind about my own battles. Some thoughts I still struggle with even until now. And it’s so hard to watch my daughters start picking on themselves, too.

If you have a teen or tween daughter, you know how hard it is to watch their negative perception of themselves develop over time. As a mom, you try your best to divert the “I’m so ugly” and “I’m too fat” comments with positive ones. {Tweet This} However, let’s be honest, 99.9 percent of the time it feels like my compliments fall on deaf ears.

That’s why I wanted to write a letter to my daughter. Sometimes it’s easier to write my feelings, without interruptions or starting an argument. She might roll her eyes in the moment. But she’ll read and re-read it later when she needs the encouragement the most. Please feel free to use it for your daughter, too.

To my lovely daughter,

I see you look at yourself in the mirror and frown. I see you look at the number on the scale and hang your head.

It may be hard for you to believe the words I want to say to you in this letter. That’s okay. Please keep this letter in a safe place so you will always know how your dad and I see you.

You are beautiful:

God’s fingerprints are all over each part of you. You may not be pleased with the break-outs or the unruly bed head hair. But your eyes were made to see the good – not only in other people – but in yourself. Your mouth, with or without your favorite lip gloss, was given to you to speak words of life.

You have significance:

Throughout life, people and circumstances will hurt you deeply. Friends come and go. But no matter what, you are on this earth for a purpose. It’s your job to rise above adversity and be the remarkable woman we know you are.

You can live your dream:

When you work hard and with passion, you can do anything you put your mind to, even get that dream job you always wanted.

You are capable of more than you think:

Push yourself. Always learn. Pursue your dreams with passion. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t.

Love with all of your heart:

I’ve seen you form wonderful friendships through high school. You all truly care for one another and have each other’s backs. I’ve even heard you say you love them. It makes my mama’s heart so proud. Continue to surround yourself with great friends. Keep caring deeply, even when it’s hard.

Always wear SPF on your face:

I started too late, but it’s not too late for you. Take care of your body and skin. You’ll never regret that, especially when you turn 45 and you’re one of the few without wrinkles.

There is so much more I could say, but one thing to always remember: love God and love the way He created you. Keep your heart and mind aligned with these things I’ve written. You’ll save yourself a lot of worries and uncertainties that way.esteem

I love you,


Your child can also use this guide to help them know that they are valued in so many ways.

Don’t miss the chance to write down all these other things your daughter should know.

What would you include in a letter to your daughter?


  • SassyBomb

    I loved this – The only part I found an issue with was the “You can live your dream” part…. It goes on to say, “When you work hard and with passion, you can do anything you put your mind to, even get that dream job you always wanted.” – While I like the encouraging sentiment of this sweet notion – it is misleading, misguiding and sets the tone for unrealistic dreams…. That said, however doesn’t mean that one should just forget about living a life that is remarkable. I love this quote, “You cannot be anything you want to be—but you can be a lot more of who you already are.”

  • Thank you for your encouragement and the comment. I have 2 daughters – one has her sights on being a chef at Disney World the other is a budding gymnast. I do manage expectations in both of them, but I certainly don’t want to squelch dreams. Because if the dream of being in the Olympics encourages her to work harder and do the very best she can….then I’m one happy mama! She may not be in the Olympics, but she’s learned the value of hard work through that dream…and it does pay off one way or another!

  • KTFlute

    I love the spf remark…but add the hands! I read once that the best way to gauge a woman’s age is to look at her hands since almost no one puts sunscreen on the backs of their hands. lol

    Great letter! While I understand the fine line between wanting to encourage and not wanting to give false hope, the teen years are for wondrous hopes and dreams. If I had not dreamed of pulling up to the Kennedy Center in a long flowing gown, prepared to play a flute solo with an orchestra, I might never have followed the very long (and very windy) path to my current job: teaching music to elementary school children.

    I say – Let them hope!!