Dear little girl:
I am writing to you because I have been thinking about you for a while. You know, things are not that good in the world, there are many things about it you should know, but probably because of your age you do not know them yet. Maybe your daily activities are going to the school, playing in the afternoons, or maybe other things. Regardless, today I would like to talk to you about violence against women. Maybe you have heard about it on TV; maybe you have a small idea about what it is; maybe you have witnessed it at home or on the street; or maybe you have never heard about it; that is way I am writing to you, because I need you to know what is happening regarding violence.
First of all, please, believe in yourself, always! It does not matter what people tell you, what they say about your behaviour, how you should act, what you should say, what is permitted and what not or how you have to behave “as a girl”. There are millions of people in the world, can you imagine it? Millions! And each person has their own way of thinking, thousands and thousands of different thoughts and believes. Can I tell you a secret? Nobody is right. Find your own way, the one that goes with your dreams, those that are faithful to you. The world is not an easy place, and it is worst when you are a woman. You are a child now, but in some years you will be a woman. Beautiful certainly, no matter what beauty standards say, do you remember what I told you before about believes? It does not matter what people say about beauty, you will be beautiful. And surely, you will have other qualities, now as a child you have them, I cannot imagine in a few years, when you have more experiences in your life. As I told you before, to be a woman is not easy, it doesn’t matter from which part of the world you are reading this, and for now, you have to deal with that. You have to deal with that, I hate myself for writing this, this is not something that women should have to deal with, and it is not something that women have to live, but of those millions of people in the world, some of them really believe they do. Above, I wrote “for now”, because at the same time, there are many women (and men) on a way to change this situation; this is encouraging, the world is changing, although sometimes it does not seem like that.
I want you to know this now, you are a girl, and probably asking yourself why I am telling you these things, but I am doing this because I want you to keep it in mind, from this moment, while you are reading this, that to be a women is a good thing, although sometimes people make us feel the opposite.
I am writing to you from the future, a 30 years old woman, who, of course, has lived more experiences than you. From here, I want to tell you that you are strong, that we are not fighting against men, we are friends of women and men and, mainly, I would love for you to be your best friend, the one that you care the most about, the one that you worry for the most, the one that you respect the most, and the one that you love the most. Many people love you, I am sure that you love many people as well, but the most important one, the one that should love you the most is you. Love yourself very much, no matter the circumstances!
Another thing: Yes! You will fall in love, and you cannot imagine how amazing it is! Falling in love is a beautiful stage, everything is sweet and pretty. You will also have a broken heart, I would like it if you did not live that, but seriously, it is very necessary to do it. It makes you grow and it gives you great knowledge. Do you want to know another secret? You will learn to live with that experience as well, as tragic as it seems, trust me, you will survive. In the end, without revealing too much, everything is alright and things go back to normal; just with a plus: You will have a story to tell and it will have given you a huge knowledge about life, love and yourself. I also wish you know love, true love, because if falling in love and having a broken heart are amazing, to love, wooh! It is really wonderful! In this case I will not tell you more, trust me, you will know it when you feel and live it.
Although I do not want to give you more information about love, it is fundamental for me to tell you a very important thing, because I am pretty sure that you will hear about it through your life and probably you will grow up with this wrong belief. Please pay attention: Love does not hurt. No, love has many properties and many ways to prove it, but not one of them includes pain. Always keep it in mind.
I am sorry, dear girl, because I am telling you this so repeatedly, but I really want you to understand it, because I am sure that other women, old and young around the world, grew up with this idea, but it is a huge lie!, and then, what happens? With this idea women get confused about love, and think that is it when it is not. When they believe this, they stop taking care of themselves, because they are confused. I want you to keep it in mind always, and live your life with your head up, hugging yourself, trusting in you, and knowing who you are.
You have a universe full of opportunities and ways to live your life, just be coherent with yourself, with what you want and what you need. Be free, live your life as you want. Something that I want you to keep in mind as well and to apply as often as necessary, is to say NO. You can say NO whenever you want, and NO means NO. Do not believe that false idea that women have a different communication code and that we are hard to understand. When we want something, we say it, when we do not, we say it too. That easy. In this coherence with yourself, practice to say what you want and what do not, and always, in this exercise, make sure to respect your answer.
These are many ideas, I know, but do not be worried, take your time to assimilate the information, you can also doubt what I am writing, I am not right about everything and I may be wrong in some words. If you criticise me, you will be using your great ability to question and create your own points of view, it is very useful. This letter is a little gift for you, I would like you to take this message and keep it present.
Dear girl, you are a child yet, and you will be a great woman. I love you.
The woman from the future, 30 years old, to the girl, to all the girls.
Citlalli Degollado is Gestalt Psychotherapist. She works with adults and couples. Currently she lives in Brighton, and she is a psychotherapist to Spanish people.
Citlalli Degollado es Psicoterapeuta Gestalt. Trabaja con adultos y parejas. Actualmente vive en Brighton y brinda terapia a hispanohablantes.