I, like 99.9% of children, grew up watching Disney movies and listening to grand fairy tales being told over and over again. As far back as I can remember, Belle has always been my favorite Disney Princess. For some reason or another, I found her to be the bravest and brightest of them. It may have been her fixation on books, the way she bluntly turned down Gaston, her ability to find beauty in the Beast, or a combination of all three that first caught my attention way back when but of course I couldn’t tell you that. To my 7 year old mind, Belle was awesome.

But now when I look back on the heroine of my childhood and all her fellow leading ladies, I find it hard to ignore the one theme that ties all their stories together and that would be the love story, of course. When broken down to their bare structure, all the lovely stories and fairy tales are about a woman being found and saved by a prince in one way or another. All these heroines are of course wonderful and lovely, but their story is only told because a prince walked in and saved the day. Would we have ever heard of Cinderella if the prince had never gone looking for her after she disappeared from the ball? Would Rapunzel even exist if he hadn’t found her locked away in her tower? Would Belle simply wither away without ever having stepped into human consciousness if it weren’t for the arrogant prince who needed to learn to love? Would all these bright, funny, vivacious female characters have ever made a mark if it wasn’t for their love stories? What if Prince Charming never came?

My intention at the moment is not attack or bash fairy tales or Disney. I simply aim to pose a question. Is a woman’s beauty, intelligence, spirit not worth noting if it is not first noted by a man? Is she truly invisible until she is discovered by someone? If fairy tales seem too far contrived look to Hollywood and the tabloids instead. An actress may be talented and beautiful and a humanitarian but she becomes the talk of the town when rumors start to buzz about her love life. Of course the question goes both ways. Would the prince’s tale even matter if he had not found his princess?

I just sometimes wonder if it is all one big waiting game… And what if he never comes? What if he never finds her?

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