I'm okay with my purple glitter boy, but cringe at my girly girl. Want help in changing. - Page 3 - Mothering Forums
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#61 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 05:55 AM
 
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My problem with "girliness" has nothing to do with girls being sexualized.  What I don't like is that girliness is all about being pretty, having pretty stuff, and maybe also being nice or popular and having a boyfriend.  That's all.  While being manly or boyish includes being brave, tough, athletic, and adventurous, building things, fixing things, rescuing people, taking risks.   No one should make being pretty and having pretty things a major goal in life, but buying into the popular ideas about what it means to be a girl can really push a kid in that direction, because there just isn't much else that's seen as girl stuff. 



Well that's what I was trying to explain earlier.

 

I think pink and sparkles are fine, but what they represent, what they have conme to represent in our society today is a plastic culture.  Think Mean Girls The Plastics, and Barbie Girl (life's fantastic, when you're plastic)  these sort images get SO much more air time in our society than the message that one can be sparkly and smart.  Even Legally Blonde which had the intention of showing that side of the sparkles and pink, failed in the end by making her story all about the big wedding in the sequel (I was SO disappointed by Legally Blonde 2).

 

The message is clear: to be a valuable woman in this world you need to be married and have children.  To get there you must be attractive in socially prescribed ways.  To be attractive to the "right man" (the socially acceptable alpha male), you need to be just the right shape, color, and dress in pink and sparkly clothes and be vapid as possible (I think every woman I know has been told to dumb it down for a man at some point in her life to get their approval) and PLASTIC.  These ideals and images (look at the last one I posted) objectify girls in literal ways,  She has BECOME the pink sneaker.  And this is always the first step towards the dissociative social disorder that is so prevelant, not only in so many women who frequently see themselves as objects, but also in so many men who see women as objects because they are surrounded by images that tell them they are objects, dismembered and dissected and plastified.  So rarely do we see a model of feminine that isn't superficial (the earth mother model is so often mocked in MS media as being secretly hypocritical, unattractive, militant, etc), it is hard to walk away with the idea that being pretty isn't all there is to girlhood.  I have a set of glitter pens I use for marking essays...I only use them when I know no one else is looking and only for certain students who I know won't hold it against me.  Glitter is socially considered silly and shallow.  Maybe I should stop hiding my inner sparkle-girl...but I only feel I could do that now that I have proven my seriousness as a manager and a department head, and I fear every time I do something even slightly silly that it will be held against me 10 times as harshly as my male counterparts who do extremely silly things on a daily basis.  I am afraid if I get out my sparkle for everyone to see my reputation will erode.  And it is NOT an unfounded fear. 

 

It is not to say that we don't inherently KNOW that one can be smart and sparkly, but we must also acknowledge that the greater impression is clear.  If you sparkle on the surface there's probably not much underneath beyond the conniving evil cow or vapid air head.  This is a prototype of nearly every hollywood film, and nearly every TV show on Prime time TV.  It is in every mainstream supermarket magazine or gossip rag.  It is clear on every reality TV series, and even major TV news stations where the female newscasters are dressed like high class hookers and they talk about fluff stories and vibrators.  

 

The solution, IMO, is to get more visibility.  Viral media.  It's our only hope to change the directional flow of the main-stream.  Without a proactive counter attack, our daughters and their daughters and THEIR daughters, will never be able to fight the current sweeping them back into the dark ages.  

 

 

 


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#62 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 06:30 AM
 
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My problem with "girliness" has nothing to do with girls being sexualized.  What I don't like is that girliness is all about being pretty, having pretty stuff, and maybe also being nice or popular and having a boyfriend.  That's all.  While being manly or boyish includes being brave, tough, athletic, and adventurous, building things, fixing things, rescuing people, taking risks.   No one should make being pretty and having pretty things a major goal in life, but buying into the popular ideas about what it means to be a girl can really push a kid in that direction, because there just isn't much else that's seen as girl stuff. 



Oh, I don't know about this. I think in the stereotypical "girly"/feminine category you'd have to include being nurturing (taking care of babies and all that). I think for some kids creative endeavors can also be seen as girly (crafts, liking to draw rather than play sports). As far as particular activities, dance is certainly considered mostly girly, also cheerleading, figure skating, etc, but those are all very athletic activities.

 

My girls are all of these things — nurturing, creative, love to dance. They are not big risk takers (esp dd1, but that's a different story), but even including that I don't think they would identify any of the masculine characteristics you listed as belonging to maleness. I'm sure many boys similarly wouldn't identify being nice, or being nurturing, or being creative as girly characteristics and many wouldn't even identify sparkles and being pretty as girly only. 

 

For positive mainstream girly activities/interests consider dance, pets/animals/horses (nurturing, how many girls out there go through a phase of wanting to be vets when they grow up), all kinds of arts/crafts, etc, etc. 

 

I think in a lot of ways it's easier for girls to break into the conventional "boy" activities rather than for boys to break into the "girl" activities like dance. My girls have been dancing since they were 3 and the boys in their classes have been few and far between. I'm almost certain there have been more girls in "boy" classes like Tae Kwan Do, locally. 

 

I do think as a parent of girls I can encourage them to explore their girliness/femininity within the mainstream without encouraging only prettiness or niceness or having a boyfriend (ugh, gross, Mom!) or being overly-sexualized. Certainly for our family and in our local area we encourage staying outside the consumerist conventional culture for the most part, but even within the mainstream consumerist culture (yes, at Target and even Walmart) there are positive girly interests and activities that I am totally okay with and even encourage. There is a lot of other stuff out there and you do have to pick and choose carefully, but you'd do that anyway. There's a lot of crap out there for both genders!

 

For moms of girls, as your girls get older you might like to check out New Moon magazine. The target age range is 8-13. My dd1 loves it. We also have several friends and acquaintances who have been involved on the girls editorial board. New Moon is very focused on positive images of being a girl and they have a "girl caught" campaign against sexualized images of girls. 

 

For the past several years, say since she was 8, my dd1 has been enamored of things that identify as "for girls". She loves New Moon and American Girl magazine (I only buy that one once in awhile because of the ads) and the American Girl self-help books about being a girl (these are great). She seems to be really embracing growing up as a girl. We've enrolled in Girls On The Run for the spring and both our girls are really excited about it. It's a great program that is in all but 5 states in the US and is also in Canada. It encourages girls in their physical and emotional well-being and certainly lets them know they can be strong!

 

Anyway, I guess my main point is you can encourage positive, strong, girliness. You can set an example and point them in the right direction. Princesses can be strong and brave and not just pretty. My girls have certainly gotten that message. They have no desire to be princesses at all and would never settle for just being pretty and nice. 

 

You are all thoughtful parents here on MDC, you know what you need to do. 


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#63 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 06:55 AM
 
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hakeber, I think we cross posted.

 

I wonder if a lot of your experience has to do with the culture where you are right now, because that is really not the message that I or my girls get. We do pick and choose our media experiences and wouldn't choose vapid shows on TV or movies, but I really don't get such a negative vibe as you paint it. 

 

I know many women in positions of power — who run their own businesses, are community activists, politicians, professors — who are in the mainstream or out of it. I know that worldwide women are "less than" more often than not, but I think in this country the examples of positive role models are not hard to find even in the mainstream and the vapidity you describe is not the norm nor do any girls I know model it or aspire to be Kim Kardashian. She's a joke and they know it! The business owners and community and state leaders, activists, and athletes are their role models. 

 

I have an acquaintance who spent some time in Lyon, France. She's a very put together woman (the kind who I sometimes feel "less than" around because I'm not so put together), but very kind. She told me that in Lyon, she found that she (who I have never seen slumming it in sweats, anyway) had to dress up to go to the grocery store/market because the butcher and cheese cutter, etc, wouldn't pay attention to anyone who wasn't dressed right (heels, nice dress, etc). It sounds crazy to me because think of the clothes you see people wear in the USA (people of Walmart, anyone?), but that's apparently (according to her) the culture there. I guess what I'm trying to say is that local culture colors our perceptions. 

 

Certainly the vapidity and plastic-ness you describe may be emulated in some areas, but in general I think there is an incredible number of positive female and feminine role models out there and most of the girls and young women I know don't aspire to pink plastic-ness. They want to be architects and psychologists and neuro-scientists and punk rock stars and volleyball players and authors and biologists and animal rescuers and entomologists and paleontologists and can recite the periodic table. They're not falling for the plastic princess bit anymore than the boys I know are falling for the super macho Rambo bit. 

 

I think we certainly need to encourage and point out positive feminine role models, but that doesn't mean we can't rock the sparkles and glitter pens if we want to!


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#64 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 07:19 AM
 
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Sounds like you have great kids!

 

Personally, this is a non-issue for me. Do you think you might be afraid that her preference for a "girly" things is going to make her miss out new adventures? If not, then no biggie. Also, sometimes I wonder: in our attempt to prevent our kids from adhering gender stereotypes, could we inadvertently be squashing their emerging sense of self?

I am the mother of a 4yo girl who has a preference for "girly" things. I don't worry unless it appears as though she is limiting herself from some new or different experience (person, toy, book, whatever) for the sake of it. For example, if she were to say: "Oh I can't do that, that's for boys," or some such nonsense.  in fact, I love to indulge DD’s feminine side. It brings me great joy, especially because these things were denied to me as a kid.

 

I've talked w/other moms at DD's preschool. We've had a good laugh at the fact that some of the MOST stereotypically "girly girls" (and we are pretty much just talking about clothing choices here) are the kids of the LEAST girly moms. (Mine included.) Take heart that no matter what "gifts" people give her, you will be the most powerful example, as her primarily female role model.

 

Also, a personal cautionary tale: my father pretty much forbade my sister and me to have "girly" things in our home, for fear that they would make us "soft." For example, no baby dolls and he didn't let us watch "Little House on the Prairie" because was "too sentimental." Now that I look back on it, the latter was probably just an excuse for getting the TV to himself during primetime sports coverage. But otherwise, his message endured: girly things are weak

 

As an adult I've had to catch up on learning how to be feminine AND powerful: not having to choose between these two things and not just being a "pouting princess." Also, I've come to realize that internalized a lot of sexism. I'm sure that you aren't teaching your kids that but, it just goes to show that the pendulum can swing both ways.

.

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#65 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 07:29 AM
 
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New Disney/Pixar movie next summer,

 

Brave:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TEHWDA_6e3M&feature=share

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#66 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 07:34 AM
 
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Toy Advertisements Limiting Girls’ And Boys’ Creativity?

http://blogs.newmoon.com/luna-blog/2011/do-toy-advertisements-enforce-gender-roles/

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#67 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 07:40 AM
 
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I just wanted to mention that the grown-up girls in my family started out both girly and not-girly.  And you know?  It didn't seem to make a difference.  The least girly of them is a bit.... insulated in her thinking.  And my niece-in-law can be positively frightening in her closed-minded pronouncements, yet she is not girlie, an excellent student and a loving mom.  My girly niece grew up to be the most progressive thinker of the bunch.  She, the one with the make up and  fake tan and professional cheerleader career.  She, the one on the cheerleader calender in sexy poses.  (The same one with the Master's, nursing her newborn right now.)

 

What strikes me about all of them is the difference in their conversations, their thought processes.  And it didn't make one bit of difference, the tomboy, the scholar, and the cheerleader.  

 


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#68 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 08:49 AM
 
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hakeber, I think we cross posted.

 

I wonder if a lot of your experience has to do with the culture where you are right now, because that is really not the message that I or my girls get. We do pick and choose our media experiences and wouldn't choose vapid shows on TV or movies, but I really don't get such a negative vibe as you paint it. 

 

Definitely, and also by the fact that I teach teenagers every day and have close contact with their experiences and their reality and their perspectives. I have a good number of students who see what YOU see.  But far too many don't (In class of 16 girls I would say on average 3 might see themselves as equals, but the vast majority think being beautiful and socially connected is all they really need to be to "succeed" in life).

 

And yes there are a good number more female role models today than there were when my mother was my age, but that does not mean their are "incredible numbers".  The numbers are still pale in comparison to the men in power.  Not to be a glass half empty girl, but the glass isn't even 1/10 full!  The visibility is not what it should be, and while there may be many many young women who see Kim kardashian as a joke many more do aspire to "keep up" with her life style.

 

Being a teacher of teenagers gives me a unique insight into their world.  I read their FB updates, and I hear what they say and read aloud to each other on the buses and innocuous it is not.  There is a twitter account devoted to degrading women jokes, Fat B*t*h I think it's called, 4million followers world wide...and most of the followers are girls.  What is that? 

 

I believe that I am able to point out role models and BE a strong female role model for my child, and that I can give her room to be glittery and pink and all things she wants to be   simultaneously.  But I know the world we live in and the world at large, where a man can feel moral impunity while staring at my breasts while I am discussing his child's progress in my class.  I think it changing.  I like some of the films I see.  I hope Brave is more about her adventure than the farting idiotic men (an equally damaging stereotype, but not effectual toward diminishing actual privilege, just effective in perpetuating the myth that girls really "run the world" we just dopn't get the credit, as Beyonce would have us believe)

 

When our kids are a little older, and plugged into MTV and have their own twitter accounts and BBs...they won't be our children to guide and protect anymore.  They will be at the mercy of the ruthless and scrupleless media moguls whose primary aim is to build profit and consumerism. They could care less about the emotional well being of our children or our society.  Even if they never choose to watch those shows and they find themselves a whole gaggleof role models and mentors, they will still have to navigate through the world of those who have been exposed willy-nilly to this culture.  They will still have to do business and politics with the Fox News end of our society, the Ann Coulters of this world.  Do you have any idea how much of a following she has?  It's astounding.

 

I am always gladto hear about young women being raised in homes that support women, that support femininity as equal and good. I am excited to share these values with my son and my daughter, but eventually I am going to pull Emily aside and explain to her that not everyone thinks like mommy and daddy.  That a lot of the world doesn't see her as equal, and her penchant for shoes, glitter and pink will work against her in terms of being taken seriously. 

 

Sweet Silver, I think it is awesome that your niece is an accomplished progressive cheerleader who can pose in a sexy calendar and stillnot feel objectified by society.  I am also sure that if she ever ran for public office that is the first thing the opposition would pick up on, and she would be lambasted for participating in soft porn and setting a poor example for young girls...what a dispicable catch 22, no?   When a sexy cheerleader can be also taken seriously in the realms of society traditionally thought of as for men, I think we'll know we've gotten somewhere. 

 

 

I have to run to class...will writemore later...


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#69 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 10:02 AM
 
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Hakeber, I don't disagree that we have a ways to go, but I don't think we need to shy away from sparkles and pink in childhood which is what this thread is really about. In my experience as a mom of two girls (ages 10 & almost 8) they start to figure out on their own when something is appropriate and when it's not. As an 18 month old my dd1 was in love with her bathing suit and wanted to wear it to the park on a winter's day in February. She had a hard time understanding that it wasn't appropriate at that age, but now, of course, she understands. Likewise most grown women (Kim Kardashian wannabes perhaps excepted) realize it's not appropriate to wear a bikini to a job interview. I don't think we have to tell our daughters that shoes, glitter, and pink will work against them being taken seriously. By the time they need and want to be taken seriously they will have worked that out on their own. If they haven't something has gone very wrong somewhere. It wouldn't be appropriate for a man to wear a spiderman costume or take his light saber to a job interview either!

 

In general in life I WORK at being a glass half full person. It's not my nature, but I have had plenty of bad experiences with glass half empty. I encourage my girls to look for the good things in life because the bad stuff will show up on its own — no need to go looking for it. I will continue to encourage them to look for positive female and feminine (if that's what they want) role models. We live in a college town with 15000 young women ages 18-24 that we see on downtown streets and campus and by and large they are not dressed like Kim Kardashian or the Real Housewives of New Jersey cast. I really disagree that "many more aspire to keep up with [KK's] lifestyle". The young women that we know are, by and large, great and so not like that! I have friends who are teachers that teach teens also and I really don't hear that kind of thing from them. I'm sure it is out there, but it's not most girls IME. And it's not just in my little bubble — my nieces in different areas are not buying into the marketing message. 

 

As for the sexy cheerleader in politics, I think a man who posed for a Chippendale-esque beefcake calendar would run into a similar thing. They might both get away with it. Who's the porn star who's in office in Italy?


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#70 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 10:35 AM
 
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Lazurii, I just wanted to come back and get back to some of your earlier points --

 

 

 

Quote Lazurii:

Yes, yes, YES!  THIS!  It's really not the fact that she loves it, but I feel like I can't reinforce it because everyone else does.  And she does love to do things, like color and paint and play with blocks, but because she also loves shoes and clothes and hair pretties then she's "all girl" and all that rot.

...

Basically I wish I could revel in all their qualities but feel like I need to give support to the "opposites" so that they get balanced praise in their life.

 

I think as long as you present a balanced view then it's all good. She will learn more from you than any other female. I don't think you need to present opposite to whatever girliness she's been gifted or the marketing messages out there, but as long as you reinforce that it's okay to love shoes and clothes and hair pretties and it's okay to play with blocks and color and paint (and look at bugs, be strong, etc) you're presenting a balanced picture and that's what really matters. You want to give her the message that girlysparkle=good and mudpuddlebugs=good. You sound like a really thoughtful mom and I'm sure you're already doing this.


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#71 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 10:40 AM
 
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My problem with "girliness" has nothing to do with girls being sexualized.  What I don't like is that girliness is all about being pretty, having pretty stuff, and maybe also being nice or popular and having a boyfriend.  That's all.  While being manly or boyish includes being brave, tough, athletic, and adventurous, building things, fixing things, rescuing people, taking risks.   No one should make being pretty and having pretty things a major goal in life, but buying into the popular ideas about what it means to be a girl can really push a kid in that direction, because there just isn't much else that's seen as girl stuff. 



Oh, I don't know about this. I think in the stereotypical "girly"/feminine category you'd have to include being nurturing (taking care of babies and all that). I think for some kids creative endeavors can also be seen as girly (crafts, liking to draw rather than play sports). As far as particular activities, dance is certainly considered mostly girly, also cheerleading, figure skating, etc, but those are all very athletic activities.


I guess you're right; there are some other things that fit into the "girly" category besides prettiness.  But you have to admit that prettiness is a big part of it, while being manly isn't at all about how you look or how nice your stuff looks - it's about what you can do.  (Yes, you can look "manly" or not, but it has to do with whether you're fit and muscular - in other words,  it's connected to what you can actually do with your body - not with your clothes or makeup or hairstyle.)  I hate it that looks are such a big part of girliness.  I also hate the weakness associated with girliness.  When you think of someone girly, you think of someone who's afraid of bugs and snakes and wild animals, who doesn't like to get dirty or do anything too difficult or dangerous, someone who's a bit fragile and needs to be protected.  Sure, you can love frills and sparkles and also be brave and adventurous and have a pet tarantula, but if you shop the "girl" aisles of Toys R Us, you won't find much that's connected with your brave, adventurous, tarantula-loving side.  If you're 4 and still figuring out what it means to be a girl, you won't see much that will help you think of girls as brave or adventurous, and you definitely won't see any toy tarantulas. 

 

When little girls want to wear pretty pink fairy costumes, it can be totally harmless, just part of every little kid's natural attraction to pretty things.  But it can also mean they're already absorbing a lot of harmful ideas about being a girl, already deciding they should focus on pretty costumes and graceful dancing instead of adventures and insect collecting.  My daughter and my son both went through a phase where they liked pretty things, wanted to wear pretty dresses, etc.  I didn't care, because they were interested in tons of other things, too.  But if I had a daughter (or a son) who seemed to be focusing on being pretty and having pretty things at the expense of being active and pursuing a wide range of interests, then I'd be concerned.

 

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#72 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 10:52 AM
 
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But if I had a daughter (or a son) who seemed to be focusing on being pretty and having pretty things at the expense of being active and pursuing a wide range of interests, then I'd be concerned.

 


Yes. That's my take on it, too, and for the most part my girls have outgrown a lot of the "girly-ness" of pink and sparkles. They do still like dance, but as a creative and athletic pursuit. I haven't seen my dd1 wear a dress to school in ages! I think there's a big phase of girly-ness from about 3-5 or 6 and then it usually begins to fade as girls continue to explore other avenues of personal expression and identification.

 


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#73 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 11:34 AM
 
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Hakeber, I don't disagree that we have a ways to go, but I don't think we need to shy away from sparkles and pink in childhood which is what this thread is really about. In my experience as a mom of two girls (ages 10 & almost 8) they start to figure out on their own when something is appropriate and when it's not. As an 18 month old my dd1 was in love with her bathing suit and wanted to wear it to the park on a winter's day in February. She had a hard time understanding that it wasn't appropriate at that age, but now, of course, she understands. Likewise most grown women (Kim Kardashian wannabes perhaps excepted) realize it's not appropriate to wear a bikini to a job interview. I don't think we have to tell our daughters that shoes, glitter, and pink will work against them being taken seriously. By the time they need and want to be taken seriously they will have worked that out on their own. If they haven't something has gone very wrong somewhere. It wouldn't be appropriate for a man to wear a spiderman costume or take his light saber to a job interview either!

 

In general in life I WORK at being a glass half full person. It's not my nature, but I have had plenty of bad experiences with glass half empty. I encourage my girls to look for the good things in life because the bad stuff will show up on its own — no need to go looking for it. I will continue to encourage them to look for positive female and feminine (if that's what they want) role models. We live in a college town with 15000 young women ages 18-24 that we see on downtown streets and campus and by and large they are not dressed like Kim Kardashian or the Real Housewives of New Jersey cast. I really disagree that "many more aspire to keep up with [KK's] lifestyle". The young women that we know are, by and large, great and so not like that! I have friends who are teachers that teach teens also and I really don't hear that kind of thing from them. I'm sure it is out there, but it's not most girls IME. And it's not just in my little bubble — my nieces in different areas are not buying into the marketing message. 

 

As for the sexy cheerleader in politics, I think a man who posed for a Chippendale-esque beefcake calendar would run into a similar thing. They might both get away with it. Who's the porn star who's in office in Italy?



There are many fluffy men who have made it into politics without the bat of an eyelid, but that's not the point. 

 

I am glad that you live in an area where there are many young EDUCATED young women and where there is less focus on look andmore focus on being yourself and being proud.  It sounds like you have a good surrounding.

 

To be clear I want to tell you that A) my ideas don't come from nowhere, or just from anectdoteal evidence.  There have been a number of studies of young people and the effects of gender disparity as they grow older:

 

Here is one study: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1530-2415.2008.00161.x/full

 

Here is a website devoted to educating others on media awareness: http://www.media-awareness.ca/english/issues/stereotyping/women_and_girls/index.cfm

 

Here is a website about popular role models: http://www.kidglue.com/2011/03/25/top-10-role-models-for-your-kids-2011/ (notice the lack of politicians and business owners)

 

B) I also do NOT think we should shy away from glitter (My house is awash with pink and shoes for DD...she loves it...it's who she is and I LOVE that!), I am merely saying, I understand the fear, and I do fear that my DD will have to go through what I went through, that she will have to give up things she loves and edit herself to fit into the patriarchy in order to succeed.  That was a painful,sad and unpleasant part of my early adulthood that lead to some pretty horrific experiences.  I'd rathermy LO not have to face those experiences.

 

C) I think denying the reasons as to why the fear should exist and pretending that things are well on their way towards equality as we sing "girl power" anthems is detrimental in the long run to true parity because it buys into the mythology that women are as privileged as men in society to go where they please and that women have an equal voice in society.  We are not equally represented in government in any nation in the world (some are better than others) and we do not have an equal voice. 

 

No one is talking about wearing costumes to an interview, women cannot wear pastels and sparkly ostentatious jewelry  to an interview either.  That sucks.  If someone likes those things, why should it take away from their seriousness as a professional?  Why shouldn't they take notes in a lecture hall with a fluffy feather boa pen if that's what they like?  Why shouldn't they have a Hello Kitty lap top?  It sucks that to be taken seriously my daughter will have to figure out that the things she loves are considered "girly" and she will have to become more "manly" to fit in.  The point is that she will have to adapt herself to be taken seriously by the dominant culture.  Masculine is seen as dominant and IDEAL. 

 

That's my whole point.

 

Why shouldn't anyone be allowed to go glam and still be seen as real and 3 dimensional?  Why shouldn't there be room for all kinds of likes and dislikes?

 

The fact is there isn't...I don't think it's a horrible idea to start talking about these things with kids when they are young and, as you say, offering a BALANCE as much as possible.


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I think continuing to conform to notions of what are weak or strong feminine traits instead of being strong/educated/competent etc. plays into the the paradigm. I mean, why can't a woman be taken seriously if she has a sparkly pink hello kitty laptop? She can, if she is competent, confident and true to herself. I think younger women know this, at least that is what I am seeing.


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Hakeber, that link you posted about role models had this *gem* to share with the young ladies of our world:

 

"4.) Raven Symone – Raven Symone has been in acting since the early days of The Cosby Show playing the ever so memorable Olivia. Since then she’s known as an actress, singer, songwriter, comedian, dancer, television producer and model. At 25, she seen it all and managed to get through unscathed. After slimming down, Raven admits that she thinks twice about what she wears now: “I thought I looked fabulous before and nobody else did. Now I wear bigger clothes because I don’t like the way people stare at me. I liked it before. Now, you’re just looking at me for the wrong reasons. Before, you were actually looking at me for a real reason.” Well we think she looks great, and she’s promoting a healthy lifestyle all the way so we say good for her!"

 

Yes, let's invalidate her experience with WHY people look at her.  All we care about is how thin, I mean, HEALTHY!  Healthy she is.

 

puke.gif

 

On another note, I had a friend of mine call today to mock me about how I let my son wear tutus and skirts to church.  She says I need to nip that in the bud and probably not even allow it in the home because she recently watched a show about these 6 boys that have all decided they're gendered girl and were that way from 18 months old.  So apparently letting my son, who is fully boy (and I wouldn't care even if he decided he was a girl) wear a skirt is going to turn him into a girl.  Or gay.

 

Sometimes I hate my church.


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No one is talking about wearing costumes to an interview, women cannot wear pastels and sparkly ostentatious jewelry  to an interview either.  That sucks.  If someone likes those things, why should it take away from their seriousness as a professional?  Why shouldn't they take notes in a lecture hall with a fluffy feather boa pen if that's what they like?  Why shouldn't they have a Hello Kitty lap top? 


The thing is, caring a lot about what your stuff looks like really IS pretty frivolous and shallow.  Time spent thinking about what purse and shoes would go perfectly with your new dress and then shopping until you find them is time you're not spending thinking about your work, or reading interesting books, or developing or perfecting skills, or doing something useful for society.  Of course, everyone has frivolous interests and wastes time with something, but it seems reasonable to me that flaunting your frivolous interests and making it appear that they're an important part of your life would make it harder for people to take you seriously as a professional.  (I think spending a lot of time watching professional sports and rooting for your team is equally frivolous and a waste of time, and it's probably true that that particular interest is less likely to reflect badly on someone - and yeah, that's probably because it's seen as a male interest.  But I don't think that means we should all embrace sparkly Hello Kitty laptops the same way we embrace the Superbowl.  I think we should recognize that they're both sort of dumb.)

 

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The thing is, caring a lot about what your stuff looks like really IS pretty frivolous and shallow.  Time spent thinking about what purse and shoes would go perfectly with your new dress and then shopping until you find them is time you're not spending thinking about your work, or reading interesting books, or developing or perfecting skills, or doing something useful for society.  Of course, everyone has frivolous interests and wastes time with something, but it seems reasonable to me that flaunting your frivolous interests and making it appear that they're an important part of your life would make it harder for people to take you seriously as a professional.  (I think spending a lot of time watching professional sports and rooting for your team is equally frivolous and a waste of time, and it's probably true that that particular interest is less likely to reflect badly on someone - and yeah, that's probably because it's seen as a male interest.  But I don't think that means we should all embrace sparkly Hello Kitty laptops the same way we embrace the Superbowl.  I think we should recognize that they're both sort of dumb.)

 

Wow, there have been some remarks that I have found insulting in this thread, but this takes the cake! I am very visually and sensually oriented, and I have always been a girly girl in love with pink sparkles and Hello Kitty. Women like you deeming those things "frivolous and shallow" perpetuates the idea that they are instead of respecting that these are true expressions of self for some of us and we are absolutely no less empowered for it. Why are you so threatened by us? What makes your choice of interests so much more meaningful?
 

 


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I think continuing to conform to notions of what are weak or strong feminine traits instead of being strong/educated/competent etc. plays into the the paradigm. I mean, why can't a woman be taken seriously if she has a sparkly pink hello kitty laptop? She can, if she is competent, confident and true to herself. I think younger women know this, at least that is what I am seeing.



 


I like the idea.   It is not the reality.  Having been in both the financial business world and international education since I was 21, from my experience women who relish in pretty things, no matter how competent they are, struggle to be heard and considered.  They are patted on the head and treated like morons and even when they prove themselves to be smart it is considered a shock or a surprise that they are also competent and her penchant for pink becomes a joke.  That's reality in the business world today...hopefully that will not be true for my daughter.
 

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Hakeber, that link you posted about role models had this *gem* to share with the young ladies of our world:

 

"4.) Raven Symone – Raven Symone has been in acting since the early days of The Cosby Show playing the ever so memorable Olivia. Since then she’s known as an actress, singer, songwriter, comedian, dancer, television producer and model. At 25, she seen it all and managed to get through unscathed. After slimming down, Raven admits that she thinks twice about what she wears now: “I thought I looked fabulous before and nobody else did. Now I wear bigger clothes because I don’t like the way people stare at me. I liked it before. Now, you’re just looking at me for the wrong reasons. Before, you were actually looking at me for a real reason.” Well we think she looks great, and she’s promoting a healthy lifestyle all the way so we say good for her!"

 

Yes, let's invalidate her experience with WHY people look at her.  All we care about is how thin, I mean, HEALTHY!  Healthy she is.

 

puke.gif

 

Yep...and that's what freaks me out!
 

 


 

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The thing is, caring a lot about what your stuff looks like really IS pretty frivolous and shallow.  Time spent thinking about what purse and shoes would go perfectly with your new dress and then shopping until you find them is time you're not spending thinking about your work, or reading interesting books, or developing or perfecting skills, or doing something useful for society.  Of course, everyone has frivolous interests and wastes time with something, but it seems reasonable to me that flaunting your frivolous interests and making it appear that they're an important part of your life would make it harder for people to take you seriously as a professional.  (I think spending a lot of time watching professional sports and rooting for your team is equally frivolous and a waste of time, and it's probably true that that particular interest is less likely to reflect badly on someone - and yeah, that's probably because it's seen as a male interest.  But I don't think that means we should all embrace sparkly Hello Kitty laptops the same way we embrace the Superbowl.  I think we should recognize that they're both sort of dumb.)

 


Now c'mon.  Why is it frivolous for a a girl to choose a hello kitty laptop but not frivolous for a man to want the newest Ipod?  Yes if one spent six hours shopping for it and considering if they wanted the white or the black version...that would be shallow, but just having it?  I disagree.  I also do not think having a few nice things is the same thing as flaunting them.  These are not one and the same.  I probably spend more time trying to look "plain" and finding business clothes that don't make me look and feel like an invisible smudge than I would picking out clothes I am instantly attracted to (which happens to be sparkly and "pretty" things, but since I am not supposed to wear stuff like that to work I have to actually invest much more time trying to look not so frivolous, as you say.)  Wanting to be attractive and modern is not in and of itself shallow.  It CAN be shallow, but then so can so many obsessions.    Just because I want to have nice things doesn't mean that's all I am or that I am flaunting my stuff.

 

I think people have been drawn to aesthetically pleasing things since the beginning of time.  There is nothing wrong with that.  It's the stigmas that are attached to them.

 

It is also how much time you spend on it.  I agree with you there.  I always tell my students that if they took even HALF of the time they spent on obsessing over their looks, weight, or attracting men, and they used it instead to focus on changing the world, Imagine what the world would look like.  In showing them some of the films like The Mickey Mouse Monopoly, Consuming Kids, Killing us Softly, and getting them to do research into media conglomerations and the companies they own and have major shares in, they have drawn their own conclusions and are taking the steps to edify themselves on the issues and change the way they view and interact with media.  They recognize diversion news from real news, and question the amount of time they are encouraged to spend on their looks and why.  They have begun to realize that there is an insidious side to the TV and Internet a d film industry, and it is not coincidence that the big wigs at companies like TelMex and NewsCorp also happen to own major pharmaceutical companies that stand to gain a BOAT load of money off of people who hate themselves.  Their goal is to keep us all hating ourselves, and the people who work for those companies are experts in psychological manipulation.    

 

So, no, I don't think being interested in aesthetically pleasing things is shallow.  I do think that most people in business feel that liking sparkly things means you are shallow and that's why if you do like those things you will either have to edit yourself or work five times as hard at proving who you are and deal with people regularly fobbing you off and treating you like a tiny fragile moron, and have to fight every single day to be taken seriously.  That has been my experience.  I don't dress in pink and sparkles and my male counterparts at work interrupt me, speak over me, and tell me lies that insult my intelligence to my very core.  And these are not the Colombian men, these are British and American men who do so, absolutely oblivious as to why they do it or what it says about them.  Imagine how much harder I would have to fight if I were open about my glitter pens, my love of beautifully constructed clothes (I designed my own wedding gown and when I was living in Asia I designed a whole wardrobe of fabulously beautiful clothes that I took great pride in wearing because I had dreamed them, drew them, and created them all from recycled and free trade fabrics), my secret collection of eyeshadow, or my trinket collection from around the world.  Little by little I have let them see that I love baking (I make the best cookies and cupcakes and celebration cakes this side of the Rio Grande), that I love to paint, that I have a gift for costume design and make up artistry, that I am maternal and caring and empathetic, too, but rather than enrich the reputation I have, at least amongst men, I get the distinct impression that every confession of my feminine nature erodes their opinion of me.  I want to be me, but I also want to be given the chance to prove I am really good at what I do and valuable to their organization.  It is not an easy tightrope to walk.  The best I think I can hope for is that my children will get a balance beam instead of a high wire. 

 

One day, when I am Head of section or the headmistress of another school, I hope to let my inner sparkle show a little more.  Because I like to sparkle now and then, and I like to be surrounded by pretty things from around the world that I have collected in my travels...but it is just one of many facets I have and one that has waited on the sidelines of my existence to be embraced for a long long time.  It's not fair, but I admit I am not brave enough to break the barrier first.  I am not willing to start my struggle all over again.  BTDT, was beaten into submission. 


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#79 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 05:13 PM
 
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Wow, there have been some remarks that I have found insulting in this thread, but this takes the cake! I am very visually and sensually oriented, and I have always been a girly girl in love with pink sparkles and Hello Kitty. Women like you deeming those things "frivolous and shallow" perpetuates the idea that they are instead of respecting that these are true expressions of self for some of us and we are absolutely no less empowered for it. Why are you so threatened by us? What makes your choice of interests so much more meaningful?
 

 



As women we are all equally disenfranchised in our society, so in that respect I suppose you're right, but ultimately, I have to say that in my experience, I have been taken much less seriously by all kinds of people when I have been rocking the sparkles and the Hello Kitty (which I LOVE)...so in THAT regard...I'm not sure the pink "girly girls" are equally empowered as those who "play the game" except that well, they CHOOSE it, so in that regard I guess they are.  On the other hand, I agree that by giving credence to the idea that liking pink and sparkles ipso facto makes one shallow  only exacerbates the prejudices already in place. 

 

I for one am not threatened by those who like pink.  I am in awe of their courage  to rock it and not falter or flee when faced with the sometimes violent, sometimes chauvinistic and sometimes merely dismissive consequences that  follow and I am enraged when I see them getting the business world's version of the cold shoulder as a result. 

 

For what it's worth, I am not trying to be derogatory or mean about women and their choices in style, I am just reporting from the front lines what my experiences and what the research shows in order to explain what some here have called "anti-girl" sentiments.  At least for me, it isn't about being anti-girl, it's about preparing our KIDS for a world that IS anti-girl on so many levels, and just making sure that they get a balanced view and have a chance to truly thrive as individuals.  It's about trying to provide a smoother path for them than we had ourselves and making sure that they never take for granted the small equalities our girls now have, because just like (as our history books say) we were "given" equal rights (check out The Wikipedia page of women's rights, or any recent elementary school history text book, they read like the nations of the world were quite magnanimous in giving away rights to women, and never talk of women winning or earning the rights) they could be eroded down to nothing, and now is no time to take it easy. 

 

Did you know the ERA has still never been ratified?  All these years after Alice Paul and her cohorts struggled, starved, and fought with blood, sweat and tears for a political voice and it still isn't quite something the Congress can get behind.  Pretty sad that we can't all agree that "equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of sex." enough so to put it in writing.

 

I just wonder why that is, if girls are so in control of their destiny, if they are so equally respected...why?

 

-- Rebekah


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The thing is, caring a lot about what your stuff looks like really IS pretty frivolous and shallow.  Time spent thinking about what purse and shoes would go perfectly with your new dress and then shopping until you find them is time you're not spending thinking about your work, or reading interesting books, or developing or perfecting skills, or doing something useful for society.  Of course, everyone has frivolous interests and wastes time with something, but it seems reasonable to me that flaunting your frivolous interests and making it appear that they're an important part of your life would make it harder for people to take you seriously as a professional.  (I think spending a lot of time watching professional sports and rooting for your team is equally frivolous and a waste of time, and it's probably true that that particular interest is less likely to reflect badly on someone - and yeah, that's probably because it's seen as a male interest.  But I don't think that means we should all embrace sparkly Hello Kitty laptops the same way we embrace the Superbowl.  I think we should recognize that they're both sort of dumb.)

 

Wow, there have been some remarks that I have found insulting in this thread, but this takes the cake! I am very visually and sensually oriented, and I have always been a girly girl in love with pink sparkles and Hello Kitty. Women like you deeming those things "frivolous and shallow" perpetuates the idea that they are instead of respecting that these are true expressions of self for some of us and we are absolutely no less empowered for it. Why are you so threatened by us? What makes your choice of interests so much more meaningful?
 

 

Not all my interests are more meaningful.  I waste my time on frivolous things just like everyone else.  But surely you're not saying that having pretty stuff is one of your most important interests?  Don't you have interests that are much more meaningful than that?  Which is more important: what you wear to work or how well you do your job?  How cute your kids' clothes are or how much fun you have with them?  A presidential candidate's positions on the issues or how she dresses?  How nice your furniture looks or how nice you are to other people?  There are lots of things that are way more important than how your stuff looks, right?  I'm not saying there's anything wrong with having a preference about how your stuff looks, or that people who like sparkly Hello Kitty laptops are automatically more frivolous than people who prefer plain black ones.  I'm just saying that the look of your laptop is a trivial matter compared to . . . well, almost anything else.  If you really care a lot about how your laptop looks, maybe your priorities are a little messed up.  Having the default plain black laptop implies that you don't care too much about it, so it looks more professional.  Of course, there's really nothing unprofessional about picking a Hello Kitty laptop if it was just as easy to find and is just as functional and you like it better.  But on the other hand, if you're focusing on what's most important, why do you even care whether or not your laptop has your favorite look?  (The Hello Kitty laptop is just an example, of course. I realize you may not actually care what your laptop looks like.)

 

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Now c'mon.  Why is it frivolous for a a girl to choose a hello kitty laptop but not frivolous for a man to want the newest Ipod?


I think it IS frivolous for a man (or a woman) to want the newest iPod if he wants it just to look cool or because it makes him feel cool to have the latest thing, not because it has some improved feature that's important to him.

 

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I think it IS frivolous for a man (or a woman) to want the newest iPod if he wants it just to look cool or because it makes him feel cool to have the latest thing, not because it has some improved feature that's important to him.

 



ahhhh but if someone chooses the sleek new look, no one disparages them for it, or considers their ideas less important as a result because no one ASSUMES it is a frivolous purchase.  They never question it.  In fact, often quite the contrary, no matter how frivolous it may have been to get it, we assume if it looks spartan, it must be serious and ergo they must be serious too.  

 

The same cannot be said for those people (not just women) who choose sparkles.  Even if I were to pay half price, and have twice the applications, there is an immediate stigma attached to pink rhinestones, as opposed to the sleek stark black items.  We judge others immediately by the outer appearance, and the judgement for girly things, girly clothes and girly style is that the person who uses those things is superficial, mentally deficient, and probably star-struck and materialistic, simply for having or using those things, regardless of the truth.  It is an unfortunate situation, and while it might not be the most important thing, it is a facet of one's happiness and well being to have the freedom and autonomy to express visually and openly one's likes and dislikes and the fact that one set of likes and dislikes is acceptable as "adult" and the other is written off as unacceptably frivolous is unfair.

 

It reminds me very much of my friend Lina who came from Kenya to work for UNICEF in their New York Office and after her first week she was asked to "tone down" her ethnicity by not wearing SUCH bright clothes and SUCH big jewelry...if she could just blend a little that would make everyone ELSE much less uncomfortable around her...hmmmm.  It seems to me we give the same admonishment, albeit much more subtlely, to young women every day.  If you want to fit in, YOU adapt to the dominant culture.  Why should anyone have to edit who they are for any reason if they have a valuable skill set and the drive and devotion to work hard to get it done?  Isn't it just as superficial to judge someone by their appearance as it is to care about one's own appearance?

 

 

ETA: throughout history one of the most effective ways for a regime to stamp out the spirits of those they oppress has been to ban, either legally or through violent suppression the freedom of expression of those things that reflect their inner spirit, their heritage and their preferences.  It might not be of the utmost importance for people to be able to wear the colors of their choice, or the jewelry of their choice, to be allowed to wear the costumes of their choice...but it is much less about the item itself and much more about the autonomy of choice, which is a human need.

 

The question is, in our current state of affairs, how do we know when our daughters are making a genuine choice and expressing a genuine preference and when they are just reacting to the social pressures around them.  Even my not yet 2 year old can suss out that pink and glitter gets her WAY more oohing and ahhing and smiles and attention in public than her blue overalls and red sweatshirt (which she used to love but now screams in anger when you go near her with them).  That is the tricky part for me.  How do I know she is choosing it and not just being conditioned to choose it?

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So right, and it goes much deeper than that.  Falling in line to any side is an easy way to hurt who you are.  Damn it if sparkles make you happy and pink is your wardrobe than DO IT!  By the way DD2 asked for a jar of sparkles for Christmas.  Such an easy list. 
 

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Originally Posted by hakeber View Post



ahhhh but if someone chooses the sleek new look, no one disparages them for it, or considers their ideas less important as a result because no one ASSUMES it is a frivolous purchase.  They never question it.  It fact, often quite the contrary, no matter how frivolous it may have been to get it, they assume if it looks spartan, it is serious.  

 

The same cannot be said for those people (not just women) who choose sparkles.  Even if I were to pay half price, and have twice the applications, there is an immediate stigma attached to pink rhinestones, as opposed to the sleek stark black items.  We judge others immediately by the outer appearance, and the judgement for girly things, girly clothes and girly style is that the person who uses those things is superficial, mentally deficient, and probably star-struck and materialistic, simply for having or using those things, regardless of the truth.  It is an unfortunate situation, and while it might not be the most important thing, it is a facet of one's happiness and well being to have the freedom and autonomy to express visually and openly one's likes and dislikes and the fact that one set of likes and dislikes is acceptable as "adult" and the other is written off as unacceptably frivolous is unfair.

 

It reminds me very much of my friend Lina who came from Kenya to work for UNICEF in their New York Office and after her first week she was asked to "tone down" her ethnicity by not wearing SUCH bright clothes and SUCH big jewelry...if she could just blend a little that would make everyone ELSE much less uncomfortable around her...hmmmm.  It seems to me we give the same admonishment, albeit much more subtlely, to young women every day.  If you want to fit in, YOU adapt to the dominant culture.  Why should anyone have to edit who they are for any reason if they have a valuable skill set and the drive and devotion to work hard to get it done?  Isn't it just as superficial to judge someone by their appearance as it is to care about one's own appearance?

 

 

ETA: throughout history one of the most effective ways for a regime to stamp out the spirits of those they oppress has been to ban, either legally or through violent suppression the freedom of expression of those things that reflect their inner spirit, their heritage and their preferences.  It might not be of the utmost importance for people to be able to wear the colors of their choice, or the jewelry of their choice, to be allowed to wear the costumes of their choice...but it is much less about the item itself and much more about the autonomy of choice, which is a human need.

 

The question is, in our current state of affairs, how do we know when our daughters are making a genuine choice and expressing a genuine preference and when they are just reacting to the social pressures around them.  Even my not yet 2 year old can suss out that pink and glitter gets her WAY more oohing and ahhing and smiles and attention in public than her blue overalls and red sweatshirt (which she used to love but now screams in anger when you go near her with them).  That is the tricky part for me.  How do I know she is choosing it and not just being conditioned to choose it?



 

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#84 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 06:41 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Imakcerka View Post

So right, and it goes much deeper than that.  Falling in line to any side is an easy way to hurt who you are.  Damn it if sparkles make you happy and pink is your wardrobe than DO IT!  By the way DD2 asked for a jar of sparkles for Christmas.  Such an easy list. 
 



 



A jar of sparkles...that is so easy. Do you have bead store near you, or a Swavorski dealer?  

 

I actually would adore a set of food glitters for my baking supplies. They'd make my cupcakes and cookies extra fun.

 

:)


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#85 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 06:53 PM
 
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Sweet Silver, I think it is awesome that your niece is an accomplished progressive cheerleader who can pose in a sexy calendar and stillnot feel objectified by society.  I am also sure that if she ever ran for public office that is the first thing the opposition would pick up on, and she would be lambasted for participating in soft porn and setting a poor example for young girls...what a dispicable catch 22, no?   When a sexy cheerleader can be also taken seriously in the realms of society traditionally thought of as for men, I think we'll know we've gotten somewhere. 

 


I guess I wasn't bringing my point as far as politics.  What I meant to illustrate is that different tendencies in childhood, even in adolescence, is not the indicator we imagine it is. 

 

And, yes, I did think positively about my niece who is so different from what I value (in general) and yet seems more empowered and open hearted than others that have had the more gender neutral upbringing that I find more appealing (in general).  I think much of her outlook is because of her parents.  I don't know any parents who expressed their love and support for their kids so well.  Both of their kids are moving through life as if the world is their oyster-- pardon the cliche.  

 

So, politics is far from my mind with this issue, though it is an important point.  I prefer to see this as raising good people-- thoughtful, openhearted, generous, unselfish, brave, self-reflective, healthy, happy people.  Frilliness (or not) is a red herring.  It is not indicative of the outcome.  That's my point.

 


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#86 of 87 Old 11-17-2011, 07:37 PM
 
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Originally Posted by SweetSilver View Post I prefer to see this as raising good people-- thoughtful, openhearted, generous, unselfish, brave, self-reflective, healthy, happy people. 

 


I wish we had more people like that in politics.  The world would be a better place.  But  I didn't just mean politics...generally in the realms traditionally reserved for men such as politics, but also law, medicine, finance, academia, science, technology, business...women are generally held to a higher standard of seriousness than men.  I hope that the world continues to be her oyster even if she ever does leave the world of Cheerleading and enter a field more dominated by men.

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Frilliness (or not) is a red herring.  It is not indicative of the outcome.  That's my point.

Well in that you are absolutely correct. Ultimately your niece's parents did something we all strive to do, I think (hope?): love our children ferociously, and unconditionally and encourage them to love themselves no matter who they turn out to be.  Who are at six doesn't necessarily determine who you will be forever.

 

 

 

BTW Beanma, I looked up Ilona Staller, the Italian politician with a history in Porn (not just sexy calendar stuff, but still)  Despite being democratically elected to her position, there is not a single link on the first 5 pages ( didn't look beyond that) of a google search of her name that doesn't refer to her as an Ex-porn star or pornstar/politician...always the porn thing comes first...She is known for being a pron star first, rather than one of a handful of democratically elected female politicians in Italy. 

 

On the flip side, I can't find any references to any male politicians with a past in stripping or porn, though musician and political activist Tom Morello once stripped for a living and no one ever seems to focus on that in his headlines.

 

 

ETA:  I have no problem with porn, sexy calendar girls, or strippers, I am just pointing out the difference in treatment in one particular case as I find it indicative of a trend.


Rebekah - mom to Ben 03/05 and Emily 01/10, a peace educator, and a veg*n and wife to Jamie.
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#87 of 87 Old 11-18-2011, 08:40 AM
 
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On the flip side, I can't find any references to any male politicians with a past in stripping or porn, though musician and political activist Tom Morello once stripped for a living and no one ever seems to focus on that in his headlines.

 


Not porn-- but Ronald Reagan never escaped his Hollywood past (of course, I was in high school at the time and may have heard a disproportionate amount of ribbing in the area).  George W. was forever branded a "cowboy" and still was identified with his substance abuse (though he used that time as a testament to his faith).  Jesse Ventura, Arnold Schwarzenegger, etc. have all been identified with their pasts long into their terms.  While men don't usually get criticized for their looks, still the past can loom large.

 

True, if you researched the Presidents their past occupations would be footnotes.  But for lesser known politicians you could find it useful to say "Oh yeah, that lady really is that porn star."  If she was a famous porn star then all the more reason.  Just speculation on my part.  I have no vested opinion in this particular instance, but I do admit to not being suspicious about any ulterior motives.  (Well, Italian politics is a different beast than the American one.)

 

I live in a state where the governor and both US Senators are women right now.  I'm not hearing about Chris Gregoire's clothing choices or anything like that.  Except for some criticism about tennis shoes in Patty Murray's first term, the jabs seem to me the same as for the men in our state, in the sense that they are no more and no less, just different.  (And I hear it a lot!  My extended family is pretty conservative politically and we live in the "blue side" of a blue state.)   Perhaps our state is different, or that I am so disconnected with the corporate and political culture that I don't see bias as being pervasive.

 

Random point I couldn't fit into a paragraph--  the most serious criticism about Sarah Palin's wardrobe was that she used McCain's campaign funds to buy outrageously expensive clothes, so it wasn't just anti-feminist media fluff.  

 

Sorry, OP, I've tried to keep my posts relevant to your original post, but this one went astray.  I will add that my sister's success with her kids was that she *demonstrated* her love for them better than any parent I know, not that she loved them any more.  

 

 

 


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