However, when it came to raising our daughter I felt very strongly that she not be limited to the "helpless heroine" stereotype. I read a study once that said girls today very rarely hear that they are brave, smart or strong. Haley certainly went through a Disney princess phase (as most 3- and 4-year-olds do) but over the years we have encouraged her to be brave and strong and to stick up for herself. I often wondered if it was sinking in.
Then last night we watched "The Wizard of Oz" as a family for the first time. Haley followed the story carefully and was concerned for Dorothy when she was captured by the flying monkeys and locked up in the tower. But a moment later she turned to me and said, "Why doesn't she get up and find a way out of the witch's castle instead of just sitting there and crying?"
Hurray for our brave, smart, and strong little princess!