Talking to dsd about social media + selfies(7 Posts)
in October we discovered that DSD had been taking unacceptable selfies (revealing and tight clothing and "sexy" posing - I have no idea how to write that sentence and have written it 100 times. I hope you know what I mean) and posting them on instagram. She was not the only one doing it in her social circle who are all religious and regular church goers. Dsd is a bright, funny, popular girl with both her religious and non religious friends and class mates.
Her mum found out when another girls mum came up to her and told her what the girls were doing.
The long and short of it is DSD has come for a visit (we live a 5 hr flight away unfortunalty) and DH has asked me to have a word from a feminist POV and I'm not really sure where to start.
She's already been spoken to about the perminance of social media and photos following her into the future. Relations being as they are between his ex (ex doesn't discuss anything at all with dH but they are very amicable) we can't get a straight answer over what has been said to dsd.
Any thoughts or advice very gfatefully received. I don't want to have a go at her but I would like to have her think about her value and worth and maybe something about pleasing men does not = high self worth.
Should add that DSD is 13
Also it's probably not relevant but I'm not religious and don't subscribe to their beliefs.
You need to identify the exact problem you have with it, which is what?
sorry- family emergency. I'll come back when I can to reply properly.
I think most girls do this because they get a self-esteem boost from the 'likes' and comments, both from their friends and from boys who see them.
I think it's going to be hard to convince an immature child not to do something that boosts their self esteem, especially when he involves something so instinctual from a biological perspective (appearing attractive to potential mates, etc).
My approach would be to explain to her that people (boys, and peers) will think more highly of her, and find her more attractive, if she conveys good character as opposed to narcissism. Especially as she gets older, her actions will be seen as attention seeking, arrogant and pretentious... unattractive. But if she does not post such pictures, she will be thought of as being confidence with a high level of self respect, and this is an attractive feature.
My point is to be aware of, and appreciate, the motivation for what she is doing... and then explain will it's a bad long-term plan.
I think I'd start by asking why she's doing it and talk through that a bit.
I'd try and emphasise that she isn't on this planet to please men. But I wouldn't associate that with self worth (as that is a social construct which is decreeing whether she has self worth or not). You don't want her to feel bad about herself you want her to understand the power differential that is being created by the boys because they aren't doing sexy pose selfies but are objectifying the girls. I'd keep the focus in their behaviour rather than what the girls are doing and who has the real power in that dynamic.
And I'd possibly not put it in those exact words !
First off, I'd ask her about her motivation for taking the pictures, because that will go a long way towards knowing how to tackle the issue.
If she's doing it to impress boys, you could go from the PoV of patriarchal notions of beauty and female availability.
If it's because she has low self esteem, you could again talk about patriarchal ideas of feminine beauty and how shit they are and how unattainable and then maybe work on raising her SE.
Hope all is well.
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