This was great. You’re right — it isn’t cute when a girl is “frightened.” It’s sad. (Unless they’re legitimately scared, but that’s different.) Girls are too often taught to get scared unnecessarily. Mice, spiders, installing the cable box — it’s all so scary!
I always think of a funny story a former boss (a woman) told me. She was in a large meeting, and most of the attendees were men. Suddenly a mouse ran across the floor and the man next to her — a big, formidable guy — squealed and jumped up on his chair, and several of the other men got spooked too. Meanwhile, my boss, who’s a petite, seemingly-delicate woman (she looks delicate but she’s tough as nails), simply sat there like the cool-headed bad ass that she is. She didn’t even flinch (save for the subtle “are you for real?” face she may have made). I took note after that story, and I hope all little girls grow up to be the same way.