Dimelo: 5 Ways to Raise a ‘Chingona’


My daughter has been the antithesis of sugar, spice, and everything nice lately. We've had plenty of feet stomping, fist shaking when she doesn't get her way (which, incidentally, is often.)

I'll be honest...m'ija impresses me just as much as she frustrates me when she tries to run the show. I am, after all, hoping to raise a chingona. Let me repeat that: I want to raise a chingona.

Maybe my family is weird, but my grandather called us his chingonas the same way most people call their kids sweetheart. It’s a controversial Mexican slang term that means badass chick but can have more negative connotations (author Sandra Cisneros for one made a case for women embracing it in HBO’s Latino List); I look at it from the standpoint of the word bitch: you either are offended to be called one or strive to be one.

But this little chingona of mine isn't going to be the bitchy, self-centered, jerky kind, if I have anything to do with it. Instead, my goal is to raise m'ija to be the kind of hell-raiser that radiates sass, self-confidence, independence, and doesn't take sh*t from anybody...but in a respectful way. I want to raise a hell-raiser who is respectful of herself and others, yet stands up for herself and what matters no matter what anyone else thinks. Some would call her a chingona and if I raised her right, the future Eli's gonna smile when they do. I might just have to print out this blog post from my friend Deb for a visual reminder.

How do we raise our girls to be chingonas, you ask? Let me count the ways...