Sunday, November 8, 2009

Staying Young

Being a mom of a baby girl, who will become a little girl and someday a big girl, one of the things I want for her is to enjoy her childhood and learn respect for herself.
My husband and I find ourselves saying at least 10 times a day, she will never wear that... say that... act that way... or else!
But here's the problem - In case you have been living in a hole, it seems like 90% of the things marketed to young girls are far from age appropriate. We have these dolls, clothes that don't cover enough skin - sold at stores like this one and tv shows with a more mature content than you would expect.

I got this article via email last weekend and it hit home, big time.
5 years old is the new 15. Sure, it can be cute when they say something funny and outside of their scope of understanding. And I am all for a kiddo who is into fashion, shoes and doing things like her mama. But, as a parent, I feel that we need to teach these young girls not how to act older, but how to act appropriately. A 3 yr old wearing short shorts and showing her belly, is not cute to me. A 4 yr old "shaking her booty", not appropriate. An 8 yr old buying her "boyfriend" presents, absolutely not. These are things that cross the line, in my opinion.

I want my 6 month old to BE 6 months old. Just as I will want her to act 3 years old and not 13, etc. No push in this house to grow up any faster than happens already. It's an uphill battle in that respect since there is such an inherent push to age our kids beyond their years, and seemingly beyond our control. Perfect example - while passing out candy to trick or treaters 2 young girls, no older than 12/13 came to the house wearing LINGEIRE and THIGH HIGHS and GARTERS.... who let them out of the house like that??? The article talks about 2 books, Packaging Girlhood & So Sexy So Soon, that I hope to check out soon - they deal specifically with the over sexualied society and how to protect our kids. We can only sensor so much in our own homes, because it's inevitable that they will be exposed to things at school, at the store etc. We need to take that time to explain why at our house we do x,y,z and not a,b,c instead of just ignoring a behavior or question. The book Oral Sex: The new goodnight kiss is another one I hope to check out as well. I am still in shock that such a book exists to be totally honest.... this speaks volumes of how much society has changed in the last 20+ years.

Teaching our girls to be girls and to respect themselves is key. 2 year olds don't need professional manicures, 3 year olds don't need to wear makeup and 5 year olds don't need to be worrying about what Johnny thinks of their outfit!


PJ said...

I teach 2nd graders, and find it amazing how teenagerish they can be sometimes. It's sad, really.

Danifred said...

I cannot begin to tell you how much this scares me. Ugh! They already grow up WAY too fast.

Rachel said...

ummm AMEN TO ALL OF THIS! I can't believe some of the things that Kylie brings home with her that kids at school say! And she goes to a private school! LOL-- not that I expect them to be much different, but a little?! Anyway- I am allllllllllll for letting my babies stay little. I dont want them to grow up any faster than they are-- I am all for them being right on track, acting 1, 2, and 4.. I dont want them (esp Kylie) worrying about things like boys, her weight, etc. like I see other little girls talk about. I hope she can be herself and respect herself as well.

You are a good mom Andi :).