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The eroticization of children. - Page 8

post #141 of 155
I think it's quite possible to guide your children into being the strong, thinking for themselves kind of people you want them to be even if they are exposed to (or like my kids, play with, Gasp!) Bratz/ Barbies, pop or rap music, and MTV. It has happened with my own children and in other families I know.

I just don't think that girls are doomed to a life of boy toy mentality or a career as a "whore" if they are into these things.
post #142 of 155
I have to agree with Unschoolin. I keep thinking about my IL forbidding TV while dh and his sister were growing up. Now both of them watch a lot of TV. I think I prefer to hope that I can teach dd good values and to respect herself so that regardless of what sort of rebellion she chooses she'll come out the other end just fine.
post #143 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnschoolnMa View Post
I think it's quite possible to guide your children into being the strong, thinking for themselves kind of people you want them to be even if they are exposed to (or like my kids, play with, Gasp!) Bratz/ Barbies, pop or rap music, and MTV. It has happened with my own children and in other families I know.

I just don't think that girls are doomed to a life of boy toy mentality or a career as a "whore" if they are into these things.
I think I see what you're saying and based on your posts in this thread, it seems like you are having a positive outcome with your daughter despite the other stuff. On the other hand, I strongly believe in garbage in, garbage out and that what you feed your mind gets into your subconscious/psyche. I think it is evident in real life too. For instance, kids that get to watch endless amount of t.v., music videos, listen to trashy music, read magazines that play up sex or sensuality will definitely take in some messages that may not be reflected in their behavior right away. However, if kids get exposed to so much other stuff (positive and non-sexual in nature) and are "hooked" on those things or interested in that and happen to like some of the songs/dolls/etc. AND have a relationship with their parents like the one you described with your daughter, then I think there is less to worry about.

I used to be very crazy-like when it came to my DS listening to trashy music, seeing videos, etc. So unbelievably uptight and scared. Now that he's 9 and loves to read, tap dance, hip hop dance, drum, Capoeira, play the clarinet, and volunteer teach in Ecuador when he's grown, plus and endless amountof other positive interests, loves classical music etc, I've decided that I can lay off a bit. I don't have cable so videos still aren't an option but I won't go crazy if he sees them in the barber shop. there is some music that he has heard from kids at school that is definitely trashy - talking about drinking, drugs, shaking your money maker - instead of getting upset, I've listened to it and explained to him what the words mean and why I don't think he needs to listen to that crap. Rarely, we'll listen to songs together that are just thuggish and glorifying street life and he does this crazy dance they do on the video and we laugh about it but he is not trying to emulate the thugs (which is what used to be my fear). Or, I let him watch some wrestling show with me the other night and we laughed about it. Something else that in the past I was really scared about b/c I didn't want him to be violent. However, I'm only comfortable with this limited exposure because I talk to my son and he has so many other positive interests.
On the other hand, there are some kids in his school that don't have that balance and bring that crap/the dress/attitude/actions to school and it is a real problem.
post #144 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnschoolnMa View Post
I think it's quite possible to guide your children into being the strong, thinking for themselves kind of people you want them to be even if they are exposed to (or like my kids, play with, Gasp!) Bratz/ Barbies, pop or rap music, and MTV. It has happened with my own children and in other families I know.

I just don't think that girls are doomed to a life of boy toy mentality or a career as a "whore" if they are into these things.
I think this is great, IF the parent is mitigating the messages by discussing things with their child as you and many others here do. Unfortunately, this is so often NOT the case, and it perpetuates something that I personally see as a big problem. I wish I knew what a good answer for this was, because while I don't believe in censorship (or whatever the equivalent solution would be for this issue), so many children get inappropriate messages from mainstream media, and don't have anyone around to help them process it, so it becomes their "normal". Sigh.
post #145 of 155
unschoolin'ma~ so do you *buy* that stuff for your kids??? if so... If you understand why some of us are so against these child-sexualizing toys, why support them by giving them your money?

I don't want to be totally uptight about diet/toys/etc.. for my kids, cause I know all about the "rebel-factor"... I feel its a very delicate balance... like when my DD was a baby, I only gave her organic foods, and would only clothe her in natural fibres, but wow, it's an impossible ideal to uphold.

when I was growing up, my mom was totally against barbies, and their ilk, but I got some for my birthday and x-mas, and she wouldn't take them away from me, but told me why she didn't like them... but still, as I grew up, I was horrified as I started getting wide hips, and had compulsive overeating for years during my teenage years. I was starting to not look like barbie (I am a tall blonde) and that made me start to *hate* my body.
post #146 of 155
See, I do believe in "censorship" and I'm not at all reluctant about it. I suspect most of you are pro-censorship too, we just draw the lines differently. We could probably all agree that kids shouldn't be given an opportunity to view porn, for instance.

I don't see any reason why I should allow my child to things that I "censor" for myself. I "censor" myself from viewing movies with violent rape scenes. I "censor" myself from watching comedies which play off of racial stereotypes. I "censor" myself from music with lyrics that demean women. I "censor" myself from junk media of all sorts. And yet my Amazon wishlist is long enough I could never buy all of it, I constantly have books and media on hold at the library, and I have a fairly full plate as far as reading and interests go. It's possible to be a full, interesting, busy person without junk media. If I can do it, my kid can do it. And if my life is fuller for it, I hope hers will be too. It's not all negative and saying no to the bad stuff, though. The emphasis is on saying yes to the good stuff.
post #147 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by BelgianSheepDog View Post
See, I do believe in "censorship" and I'm not at all reluctant about it. I suspect most of you are pro-censorship too, we just draw the lines differently.
I see what you're saying....OK, I'm pro-censorship in my own home (inasmuch as deciding what is and is not appropriate for myself and my young children, and passing on my values so that as the age and gain responsibilities they will make choices that somewhat align with what I've taught them), but I'm not for legislating censorship for the general population...more clear? Because, what's offensive to one person is not offensive to another - I can think of lots of stuff that's offensive to my very conservative, very religious in-laws that isn't offensive to me. And I"m pretty dag-blummed conservative when it comes to exposing children to inappropriate sexuality and violence...so, who gets to decide where to draw the line? That's what makes me unomfortable about legislating censorship...but then the other part of me feels like if children's own parents aren't watching out for them, then who will? BUT - I default to no legislation of censorship, because it could get too "big brother" for my own comfort.
post #148 of 155
Right, I've just found that government censorship gets confounded with other kinds of censorship in these discussions. I don't think that "censoring" what comes into your home necessarily correlates at all with being in favor of government censorship.
post #149 of 155
Really interesting thread. I don't have any girls, yet, but I have 2 boys & I've been thinking a lot about how to help them grow up to be men who respect women. I hope that hubby & are I setting a good example. but clearly there are other things we need to think about/do to help them.
post #150 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by The4OfUs View Post
so many children get inappropriate messages from mainstream media, and don't have anyone around to help them process it, so it becomes their "normal". Sigh.
I agree that having a caring, mindful parent/someone around to discuss and help navigate these issues is really key.
post #151 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by majazama View Post
unschoolin'ma~ so do you *buy* that stuff for your kids??? if so... If you understand why some of us are so against these child-sexualizing toys, why support them by giving them your money?
I do buy my kids some of that stuff. If by that stuff you mean Bratz and Barbies, some clothes and music. Dd just got a new Bratz doll and the Pussycat Dolls CD for Yule for example. She's been enjoying doing the dolls hair in crazy ways and dancing all over to the CD. We've giggled over some lyrics together. Buying some of that stuff is not a problem for me.

Quote:
when I was growing up, my mom was totally against barbies, and their ilk, but I got some for my birthday and x-mas, and she wouldn't take them away from me, but told me why she didn't like them... but still, as I grew up, I was horrified as I started getting wide hips, and had compulsive overeating for years during my teenage years. I was starting to not look like barbie (I am a tall blonde) and that made me start to *hate* my body.
I am so sorry that you struggled that way as a young woman. It's unfortunate no doubt. My Dd is not perfect or immune from the messages media has regarding weight, sexiness, and etc and I don't think refusing Bratz or Barbie will make her so. In fact, Dd kind of does look like a Barbie. She's leggy (5'3"), slender (100 lbs give or take), blonde, and blue eyed. Well she has black streaks in her hair at the moment, but whatever. She said once that she wasn't worried about wanting to be like a Barbie because who wants to be that short? LOL I think just being able to talk about the issues with the kids is the big thing really. Tricky stuff this parenting business.
post #152 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnschoolnMa View Post
I agree that having a caring, mindful parent/someone around to discuss and help navigate these issues is really key.

ITA. Even if you forbid the stuff from your home and don't let your dd buy it, you can still have problems if you aren't talking about these issues. It's not the things that are the problem it's the messaging behind it or the marketing whichever you prefer.
post #153 of 155
well, to everyone there own.

I'm not wanting my girls to go through what I did, so, I'm being very cautious in what they are exposed to. That is how I am dealing with it... if some barbies slip in as they get older, I will talk with them about it.

The thing is, at this age (4 and 2) they have no filter for things... so I'm very careful of what they see on t.v.... and they sure know how mommy hates commercials. I mute them every time they come on. those 'seductive' shampoo commercials and such are pretty bad sometimes, IMO. and they don't watch any cartoon channels that have commercials.

What my mom always taught me was how women are/were objectified in the commercial world. I think that helped me to understand ads and such better, with a discriminating eye. I think things would have been even worse had she not said anything about that stuff.
post #154 of 155

Don't know if this has been mentioned

But with the Bratz doll craze, there comes the Bratz movies and Saturday morning cartoon. There are evil twin girls who get plastic surgery and are silly heads, and an evil magazine editor that they all work for always out to get them. The girls are boy crazy, the boys are like boys--they're in a whole different movie. It's awful... and yet, so true to life for some situations. I put the kibosh on it and told her why. Basically, I said these are ridiculous characters who behave stupidly and that kind of stuff has nothing to do with the life of a seven year old. "Oh yes it does! you don't know Mom."

She wasn't too happy, but, there it is. She's got the dolls... and the Polly Pocket craze, and the Littlest Pet Shop. She's just a kid.

Today she came home and reported that some kids were chasing her, calling her names, in a good way, like "Paris Hilton." Her hair is like Paris': long and blonde. So, gotta be careful not to be too harsh on Paris Hilton, and to explain the relationship between attractive looks and associations to preconceived ideas...and, and, oh my Goddess! She'll be so confused... or no, wait, she'll explain it to me!
post #155 of 155
Wow, is there seriously a cartoon? I should see if my friend's Dd has it. She's a Bratz collector lol. It sounds like a strange trip.
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