Daughter upset because she doesn't look like me

[deleted account] ( 11 moms have responded )

I have two daughters, ages 7 and 5 years. My 7 year old looks a lot like me and people often comment on how alike we look. My 5 year old looks absolutely nothing like me and nothing like her sister. They are both beautiful, but I can't even stretch my imagination to find something about them that looks similar. My 5 year old looks like my husband when he was little, but not much like how he looks now. People also comment on how my little one looks nothing like me and nothing like her sister. These comments seem to upset her, although I know they are in no way meant in a negative way. She worries that people will think she's not my daughter or that she's adopted.

I've tried a few things. I've told her that everyone knows she's my daughter, but also there wouldn't be anything wrong if someone who didn't know us thought she was adopted. I've said that mommies who adopt babies love them every bit as much as mommies who grow them in their bellies and they're every bit as much 'family'. I've said that I wouldn't change a single thing about the way she looks because she's beautiful. That I love that I have two girls who look so different and unique but are both so beautiful. Still, occasionally she curls up on me and tells me she wishes we looked more alike.

Any ideas? I don't want it to upset her, but I can't stop people commenting on it, it's natural. It's a bit unusual for two siblings with the same mother and father to look as different as they look. I absolutely love it, really. I can't look at my oldest and know what my little one will look like in two years, watching her grow will be completely new. We have never had a problem looking back at old pictures and knowing which daughter is in the picture, it's obvious (from the moment my second was born, she looked totally different from my first).

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Atasha - posted on 06/23/2012

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First of all let me say I know how your daughter feels. My mother has red hair and brown eyes, my dad had brown hair hazel eyes and myself... Blond hair blue eyes. I look NOTHING like either parent. It can be very confusing for a young child if they feel like they have no family ties. As for boosting her self-esteem, just remind her that everyone is different. It is wonderful that she is her own unique person, and NOBODY looks just like her! There will never be another person like her and she is completely irreplaceable! I know you can't stop people from commenting on how different she looks but you could replace the hurt with a comment after the statement like "She is one of a kind and we wouldn't change her for the world." It might make her feel just a bit better about not looking like you or her sister. Hope this helps.

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Chaya - posted on 07/03/2012

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I'd try a litte humor with people who point it out. Try something like she got her good looks from her dad, her mom still has hers. I'm sure you can find something better. Just explain to people who mention it that she looks like her dad.
My children, (Ages 35, 17 & 9) don't look like each other, two are adopted, one is not. (One is a potential adoptee) I tell my children that one is biological, two are adopted, I can't remember which is which. I'd be dumber than a box of rocks if I didn't know, one is black, one is white, one is half black, half hispanic. (Don't know how I got a white kid, I'm chinese, her dad is native american.

Becky - posted on 06/29/2012

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The only thing similar my sister and I have are freckles, but if you put us side by side you'd never know we are related. I have poker straight hair, she has ringlets. I have brown/hazel eyes, her's are piercing blue. Your daughter may not look like you, but there is a bloodline, and she looks like someone. It's amazing going through old family pictures and seeing how much someone from this generation looks like someone else from another generation.

Oh, and I agree, hug her and tell her she is perfect in every single way, and let her know that families are made up many different types of people.

Pamela - posted on 06/26/2012

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Anytime she is showing you that she is insecure about this, sweep her into your arms and give her a big hug and kiss.

If people make comments and she hears them remind them that perhaps they are unaware of their hurtful comments by saying, " Are you aware that saying such may hurt my daughter's feelings. I know you don't mean to be impolite, so we both forgive you for your comment!"

Not only will this support your daughter, but it will bring attention to the person making the comment that these kind of "off hand comments" can be detrimental to others!

Last, but not least....please purchase a copy of the Four Agreements by Miguel A. Ruiz and read it aloud with your daughters! It is a wonderful guide about how to shift and change our own lives when it comes to others and ourselves. In particular pay attention to the second agreement Don't Take ANYTHING Personally. If you can instill this belief in both of your daughters NOW, and any other children you may have , as well as yourself and your mate/husband, you will not only heal yourselves but will contribute to healing our planet!

The highest and best to all of you!

[deleted account]

I think lots of people deal with this. Growing up, I had blonde hair and blue eyes. My sister and Dad had dark hair and dark eyes, my mom had dark hair and blue eyes. I was definitely the odd one out. Then I married a man with dark hair and dark eyes, and all 3 of my kids have dark hair and dark eyes. People will sometimes still tell me my daughter looks like me, and I can see it too, not in looks so much but in gestures, expressions, etc.

I would try to point out ways that your younger daughter acts, personality traits, gestures, etc that she shares with you or with her dad. I would also be sure to tell her that when people make comments, they are looking only at very superficial things. Just because two people both have dark hair doesn't mean they look alike, but strangers will sometimes assume that they do. Family relationships go a lot deeper than that. And ultimately, each of us is unique and should be proud of how we look.

Bobbie - posted on 06/26/2012

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Both my parents are brown hair brown eyes, my brothers are both brown hair a d brown eyes. I am blue eyed and blonde. I never had an issue as a kid with being very different from the rest of my family. People did ask of I was adopted and I always commented back no I'm
Just special. Maybe get her to say something like that to people when they comment, it could help her build up her confidence and start liking her uniqueness.

Tracie - posted on 06/25/2012

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My two girls are also as different as night and day. Hubby and I look similar (brown hair, brown eyes) and our oldest daughter got our coloring. My second daughter, however, wound up with electric blue eyes and blond hair! She has a little bit of that "odd man out" feeling but we just focus on what's unique about each of our girls. They both feel special because of qualities that only they possess. And we make sure our second daughter understands where her blue eyes came from genetically so she never questions her parentage. *;-)

Lynn - posted on 06/25/2012

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I had a little girl at my preschool who has dark brown hair and eyes, like her mom (whose family was from El Salvador). Her older sister has blonde hair and blue eyes, like her dad. I'm sure they've had that issue, and will have to explain for many years to come. It's unfortunate, but people will probably continue to ask.

On the other hand, I've also had two kids (diferent families) who were both adopted, and had the same hair and eye color as their adopted families, and I never would have guessed they were adopted if they hadn't told me.

I would try to find books on genetics for kids, that would explain that kids can be anywhere on the spectrum from as dark as one parent, light as the other parent, or anywhere in between. Biracial kids can be blonde, too. I'm sure someone has a book out there to exlpain that in kid's terms!

Melissa - posted on 06/24/2012

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I would start by pulling out some pictures of family members when they were her age and finding similarities in them and then focusing on that.

Louise - posted on 06/23/2012

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All three of my kids look different. My eldest son looks like me and my middle son looks like his dad yet my daughter looks like both of us. All very different. Just emphasise to your daughter that she is lucky because she looks like daddy. Make a big thing of it, it is just a phase so dont worry it will pass.

I look like my mum and it really annoys me when people say, dont you look like your mum, no I look like me!

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