Ophelia’s Voice: Legacy Book Project

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Female Leadership Legacy Book Project

*Ophelia’s Voice* (www.opheliasvoice.org) is launching a new grassroots project called the “Legacy Book Project” to compile reflections from girls
and adult women about female leadership, which will be made available in late June 2009. This project is in the spirit of recognizing the value of
reciprocal mentorship, essentially addressing the question: “What can girls offer women? What can women offer girls?”. We are looking for *250-word submissions* from self-identified girls and women in any corner of the world that want to address the following question:

Girls: Write a letter to yourself at age 30. What do you hope you will have accomplished at the age? How do you hope the world has changed for female leaders and gender equality? What will you want to remember about being a young woman?

Women: Write a letter to yourself at age 13. What advice do you wish you had at that age? What would you tell yourself about your potential to be a
leader? What has changed in your life from that age? How has feminism changed?

We are looking for candid and honest submissions, and will not censor submissions in any way. This is a project with very few limitations, so
express your “letter” in a length and style you are comfortable with – please don’t feel limited by traditional letter formats.

All contributors will receive a copy of the grassroots publication in the summer of 2009. If possible, please include a photo of yourself as an
adolescent girl (ages 10 – 13 if possible) with your submission. Don’t hesitate to contact us at joanne@opheliasvoice.org with any questions.

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~ by artpoped on April 16, 2009.

2 Responses to “Ophelia’s Voice: Legacy Book Project”

  1. The advice I wish I had when I was 13, which I wouldn’t have listened to because at that age I knew everything, was that the happiest goal of every girl or woman was to be a wife and mother. I believed, in 1948, the fairy tail of ‘happily every after’ but found out that even with the love of your life, marriage and motherhood is VERY HARD WORK!. There were times when it was incredibly painful and difficult. Many people ask how I could have been with the same man for 55 years. The reality is/was that we were not the ‘same’. He changed, I changed, not together, not at the same time nor in the same way. It was challenging, exciting and a wonderful experience but not always happy. Life isn’t.

    I was a feminist and social activist – still am – and unfortunately I believe young women don’t understand what a long way to go they have to be thought to be equal, not to mention be treated as equal. We only began the changes – there are many more to be accomplished and my time is running out! The first very difficult but essential change that needs to be made is for us to stop being competative and to think that is ‘human nature’. It’s not – it may be male nature, but I would question even that, but it is not women’s nature. Our nature is to support and care for – each other, our children (male and female), the environment. The way to accomplish ‘equality’ for all is to cooperate, collaborate and be caring.

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  2. Dear Barbie
    You are 13 and just had your birthday here in Strathroy Ontario. You have a good kind heart – and you have secrets. Concentrate on the goodness in you. The secrets you have may not be shareable for many years but do allow your goodness to keep you being kind to yourself around your decisions. Keeping secrets means that the good people around you who could give you wisdom in your decisions do not know that you need the wisdom right now. Later on in your life you are going to be the one who is able to give yourself that wisdom,and also share with others.

    Now, what you need you need is to be a good friend to yourself and know that that is the source of your wisdom. The pain that you have inside around your parents and your brother will eventually be diluted. They cannot change their need for power through alcohol. Staying a friend to them and to you means that you are going to talk to them and you with the same compassion that you use when you are talking with your friend Bonita. You do not judge her when she does something dumb or rude and you are not mean to her. When she is not there for you you know she is busy with her family and her own “things”. It is the same with your parents and brother. And you. Be kind to yourself and do not think that you are not lovable just because your family are into their own life and decisions,they are not making changes in the way they think – but you can. Start now. Decide that you will always stand beside your own self as a friend and support yourself with loving decisions about your life. Your lovability comes from caring about yourself. Do it now. This is not about selfishness or about vanity it is about the compassion and unconditionality that you have for people like Bonita. Look at that and use it for yourself and for your parents and brother even when they cannot.

    Your family does love you and are proud of you as much as they can be about anyone. Accept that and remember it when things get tough in the future. Loving friendship in all it’s forms is what you are relly good at. Know that.

    As your older being I can tell you for sure that by doing this now in your teen years you are going to have a lot less healing and changing to do later in your life. You have a wonder filled life ahead of you and you will enjoy it every day that you choose to enjoy it. Make this your choice – simply say “I choose to be happy even when others around me do not choose this”. There it is a positive decision you just made. It is that easy, believe me. make all your decisions with that same techniche, kindly worded and spoken in a full non judgmental sentence.
    Love from your self – Barb

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