Five Books Every Daughter Mom Needs To Read
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By Jennifer Lebo
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Every woman should have a “happy place”.  


A place where she goes to take care of herself, to recharge her batter, to “fill her cup”.


Do you have a “happy place”?


Maybe yours is on your back deck, with a glass of wine, dipping your feet in the pool at sunset.  Or maybe it’s at the spa, getting a massage, releasing all the tension of the day, week, month. Maybe it’s a night out with your best friends, or a date with your husband, or a morning at the gym with your workout buddy.


All those things sound divine to me!  Don’t they?


But while they do sound lovely, none of these are my true “happy place”.  For me, it’s always been the same.


My happy place is downstairs, in my favorite chair, early in the morning, before anyone else is up, with that first cup of coffee, and a good book.  Preferably during summer months, when things slow down a bit. When I can hear the sounds of chirping birds and watch the sun come up through the windows, the dog sleeping happily at my feet.  I love spending my summer mornings like this.


Which is why I’m on the lookout for the dozen or so books that will accompany me in my happy place this summer.


I’ve always been an avid reader, and so it makes sense that books are always a part of my summer mornings.  But I tend to go in phases when it comes to my reading. Sometimes I’m all about mystery novels, or anything fiction.  More recently, I devoured a ton of business books, specifically geared toward women. But lately I’ve been all about the mom and daughter stuff.  The teen stuff.


I swear it’s like reading horror sometimes.  But I’m captivated.


And you might be, too.


I wanted to share with all my mom readers today, a list of the FIVE MOM BOOKS I’ve started reading this spring.  Some of these are already finished, some have only just been started. One I even quit on already, but I’m sharing it anyway because I think some of you might find it important.  


But here they are, my FIVE MOM READS FOR SUMMER.

1. Strong Smart & Bold: Empowering Girls For Life by Carla Fine

This book is definitely a little dated.  It was first published back in 2001, so it’s missing all the joys of social media and the digital age our daughters are currently struggling through.  But despite this, the book has some timeless truths, along with some great ideas and activities for connecting with your daughter, or the girls in your life.  It’s based on the ideas behind the organization Girls Inc, and it is wonderful. I’ve got more than a dozen pages in this book earmarked for future reference. I’d recommend this book to all my daughter mamas out there.


2. Picture The Girl: Young Girls Speak Their Minds by Audrey Shehyn

Another outdated book, but still worth the read.  This book was first published around 2000, but its concept is powerful, and it’s the exact project I’ve always wanted to do (and hope to still do someday).  Shehyn, a photographer herself, spent time with a variety of teen girls, took their portraits, and set them to their own stories. These girls share their stories- in their own words.  The results are powerful. It’s a great book for any mom to check out. Girls telling their stories. How awesome!


3. Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions Into Adulthood by Lisa Damour

This book I’ve only just begun.  It was first referred to me by a friend who is mom to two daughters herself.  I then came across it in a search for summer reading. And then another mom suggested I read it (after I had already picked it up myself).  This book is calling my name! I’ve only just started it, but so far the message is powerful. Our girls do not need to hear the message of “how difficult it is to live with teen girls”.  They are not easy to raise, but who is? This is life, and this is natural, and they are not abnormal. They are precious. I can’t wait to get deeper into this one.


4. The Beauty Myth: How Images of Beauty Are Used Against Women by Naomi Wolf

This is the one book I may be giving up on, but I leave it on the list because it has its merit.  It speaks to the struggle that we women face growing up after the age of feminism and in a world where we still are not equal.  It discusses beauty images, the workplace, feminism, and more. But it’s a dry read, and even more challenging, it’s outdated, and so is missing that crucial piece where social media comes into play.  I may return to this one, but I’m not sure.


5. American Girls: Social Media and the Secret Lives of Teenagers by Nancy Jo Sales

This book!  I’m closing out the list with this book because it’s the one I’m currently captivated by, and think EVERY MOM NEEDS TO READ.  This book is part informative, part horror, all truth. Sales goes into social media in ways that I’m not sure we moms even knew existed.  I know I didn’t. She spends time with teen girls, and gets their perspective. She studies all sorts of social media platforms. She informs us moms about what’s really out there.  I’ve only just begun this book, and it’s a challenge to read (unnerving, not dry or wordy), but I’m so glad I discovered this book. You will be, too.


And there you have it.  My FIVE BOOKS FOR MOMS OF TEEN GIRLS.




Finding these books has made me realize that there is too much out there that I do not know.  I need help. WE need help. The world that our teen girls are growing up in is VASTLY DIFFERENT than the one we grew up in.  


Let’s make sure we walk this road with them with our eyes open, alongside our daughters.


And maybe we can walk it together.


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