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To worry about role models & child innocence

(9 Posts)
SingingInTheRainstorm Fri 03-Feb-17 04:57:37

DH has an awful habit of watching TV shows like MIC, TOWIE, KUWTK etc. Intellectually I'm on a different planet to him. Noise cancelling earphone that work are being saved for.

Luckily or maybe unluckily DS looks up to footballers and gamer you tubers. No real problem there, although he is aware of his appearance, wants a toned body, fashionable facial hair (a long way off) plus pristine hair.

DD is into Shopkins, Lego and dolls. But a big worry for me is when she hears about teen celebrities, she will have an unrealistic expectation of appearance, what to wear clothes and make up wise. I really would love it if she could keep her innocence of youth for as long as she can. I know this is an issue that affects both sexes. If you have teens how do you deal with it or are you relaxed about them doing as they wish?

Out of the above there's one family who make a mint from tween fans with clothing lines and make up lines. Of course DD loves dress up, having a girly day painting nails and playing with make up is fun and good role play. Maybe I have unrealistic expectations but I want her to wear moderate clothes, instead of flashing lots of skin when she reaches her teens. As an adult the choice is up to my DD, but the whole idea sex sells, or being sexy helps you acquire what you want is of concern.

I really want to enforce positive body images, so size isn't an issue, I can't see her getting obese, but I worry about all these super skinny role models and her getting an eating disorder. Another worry is body dysmorphia, especially given the youngest of this famous family has had a total, magical transformation. As an adult it is my DD's body to do as she wishes, but should she have small breasts or large, it shouldn't be a concern.

I've seen teens wear those padded bras that add 2 cup sizes, under say a stroppy top. Obviously DD wears vest tops, but I would be horrified to take her underwear shopping and for her to make a b-line for anything inappropriate. I don't know if you agree, but until 16/18 it's underwear not lingerie. It's there to fulfil a purpose, to support her growing body.

Similar with make up, when at high school, I hope 13/14+ at the earliest she can add blush, lip gloss and maybe eyebrow pencil. Not the whole range of Rimmel or Maybeline. I do worry that people who put themselves out there as role models give false hope, leading to teenagers hating everything about how they look. Hopefully I can find role models that promote beauty within your own skin, accepting perceived flaws etc.

I'm sure I'm in for a huge shock, what I wish for and what happens are two completely different things. I've seen the new range of clothes bought out by the 19 year old (?) everything screams look at me, look at my body, aren't I beautiful. When beauty can come in many forms.

I remember cousins being aware of the wonderbra due to how it was advertised at 12/13+ They also would read their Mum's Cosmo which wasn't all that appropriate, but it made them feel grown up. I read alternative women's magazines so that influence won't be about, but friends and whatever she searches on her Kindle Fire will be.

Like I said above, it's not solely a girl thing, but boys are getting more in touch with how they look too.

Is it a storm in a teacup that cannot be avoided?

Nataleejah Fri 03-Feb-17 06:58:28

Teenagers for ages want to look more grown up.
Encourage DD into some alternative fashions.

SingingInTheRainstorm Fri 03-Feb-17 09:59:20

Thank you, vintage clothing is pretty trendy, hopefully that could be an option.
Am I being unreasonable to think the person I'm talking about, should think about her actions, considering so many teenagers look up to her?

corythatwas Fri 03-Feb-17 10:37:33

It is possible, even at the age of 14, to wear makeup and still not hate your body. I haven't worn any makeup since my wedding 25 years ago and will probably never do so again: dd has been rather keen on it since age 12 or so. I went around (and still do) in scruffy jeans, she is interested in clothes. It seriously, seriously does not mean that she is a more shallow person, or unhappy in her skin, or desperately trying to live up celebrity images. It just means she has an interest I don't happen to share. When it comes to shallowness, I probably managed to pack more vanity and look-at-me-aren't-I-special into my hippie headband than she does into her clothes shopping. Vanity and anxiety to conform takes many forms...

I think the biggest revelation for me was realising that my teenagers were people in their own right, with their own ability to think and make up their minds on values and what is important in life.

pipsqueak25 Fri 03-Feb-17 11:21:16

not repeating what i honestly think of reality tv celebs and the like but it ain't nice ! back in the real world you come across as a loving mum who has good ideas for supporting her dc and will encourage dd esp. to be strong and think well of her herself in a positive way.
someone said to me when mine were very young 'give them roots to grow and wings to fly' that's all you can do, try to steer them in the right direction, be supportive and ready to catch if they fall, to help them back on their feet. the early teens can be difficult but open communication is key in imo, i never wanted to be friends with my dc, [that came later as adults] as i was mum first and fore most. it is an exciting but challenging time, here's hoping the transition works well for you as it did with my dc.

pipsqueak25 Fri 03-Feb-17 11:23:49

cory hippy head band grin know what you mean, i had an 80's perm and thought i was the bees knees looking back at photos now it's 'what the heck WAS i thinking ?'

corythatwas Fri 03-Feb-17 11:56:58

Well, I know what I was thinking: I thought I was ever so superior because I wasn't shallow and in thrall to the latest fashion like my contemporaries. And if that isn't vanity and shallowness, I don't know what is...

Stuffedshirt Fri 03-Feb-17 12:01:17

I absolutely agree. With celebrity status, no matter how it is achieved, comes fame and fortune. With this privilege comes responsibility and these 'role models ' should take their responsibilities seriously.

wigglesrock Fri 03-Feb-17 12:21:48

I tend to agree with what corythatwas is saying and I'm sorry if I've got the wrong end of the stick but there's just as much vanity and exclusion from the whole too cool for school alternative to fashion (showing my age using that word) the trend to dismiss young girls and women as sheep if they decide they like something that's in or that friends/celebrities wear.

I've 3 daughters - the oldest is coming 12 and in her first year of secondary school. She has make up, she doesn't wear it to school, she rarely wears it all tbh because I just don't make that big a deal of it. She is very comfortable in her own skin, with her own ideas, she picks and buys her own clothes now. Some of her stuff isn't to my taste but Christ I remember my mum despairing at some of my "alternative" phases and her mum was the same with her. I think that sometimes through best intentions we or certainly I know I can do it place pressure on our children to do their own thing when their own thing is discovering themselves that they need to make mistakes or choices that we inwardly roll our eyes at and that we can be harder on girls than we need to be.

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