How NOT to protect your child from harm: Illustrations included

Read another bloglady’s rant about how girl-children and their parents are subtly being influenced to dress little girls like tarts.  I totally agree with her.  A friend commented on Facebook that his 3-year old saw Beyonce jiggling away on TV and said:  “She’s got no pants on.”  He further commented:  maybe my 3 year old should explain to her that singing about girl dignity without clothes is kinda stupid”
Subtle does it
We’re often not aware enough of these subtle messages we are being bombarded with via the media and fashion buyers!  (A little side-rant:  I’m now in that dark fashion space where clothes in South African shops are either for young adults or for old ladies.  Flippen nothing in-between! Choice:  mutton dressed as lamb or frumpy aunty. Gmf.)  I digress. 
Seeing is believing!
ReluctantMom posted some pictures of examples of how girl-children are being made familiar with “tart-roles”.  I felt really sad at some of the pictures as I don’t think any parent really plan to do their children harm.  Often it is ignorance, lack of training or just stupidity.  Unfortunately, there are more long-term effects to a lack of knowledge or training. Here are more pics I found on-line of parents who make stupid choices with regards to protecting their children from harm.  I'm uncomfortable with posting some of these pictures here because of the obvious lack of respect for women and the emotional safety of children, but here goes... 

Core Needs
I’ve previously mentioned that children have 8 core needs and protection is one of these core needs.  When children are not protected from bad influences by their caregivers, it can lead to all sorts of problems.  I think allowing girl-children to dress beyond their age exposes them to interaction with the opposite gender that are beyond their emotional maturity.  It tells them that the inside-me is not as important as the outside-me.  Probably also that the way to attract attention is through the outside-me.  I’m not going to comment on the messages boys get regarding girls as that is a whole rant on its own.
Help your child choose well
What parents need to remember is that their primary time of influence on their children is relatively short.  By age 13 or so, you’ve lost the time where you are the most important influence.  Then, friends are much more important and will be the main factor in shaping your child’s choices.  If, by then, your child is familiar with unhealthy influences, the chances are good that your child will make unhealthy choices.  I did it.  I’m sure everyone makes stupid choices because friends are doing it too.  If you’ve been able to protect your child adequately by giving her a good, solid base about the importance of self-respect and dignity...well, you’re a good-enough parent then.  Well done.

1 comment:

Mickey said...

Mandy, you are so right on! As a parent these pics just make me sick! How can a parent endanger their child by letting them bath with a big old ugly, scary snake or by exposing them to a potential raccoon bite. I do not get the child on bike with a poster, if u can explain that one. Here in the US (Detroit, MI) things were so much different when I, as a single parent on welfare, raised my daughter in the late 1970's. I had a relative who kept bugging me to get my daughter into modeling when she was just an infant. Do you get the TV show that shows little girls and the process they have to go through to be in a beauty pageant. Called Tiarias and Princesses or something similar to that. I cannot phantom how a parent pushes their child to be a "beauty princess" at such a young age instead of letting them just be kids. I mean kids should have fiends, run around in hot weather under a sprinkler, while only wearing their bottoms, get dirty, play in the dirt, mud, etc. And to think of a parent putting a cigarette in their child's mouth! When I was young they used to sell them fake cigs in store, but not anymore. Thank God for some small progress. I am, and could be on a long rant and rage over how children are growing up(being raised) these days. This is a very good topic and needs to be addressed more. I encourage young people,esp single teenage moms,to take parenting classes. They are free in the US ,I do not know if any exist in SA. I know I made many mistakes when I raised my daughter(I was single and 20yrs old,) but she turned out to be a brilliant, smart young lady. But, I must say that while she was growing up I took her to "Head Start", (an educational program specifiably designed for low-income people,) when she was 3yrs and encouraged an education throughout all these years. This, I think is what parents need to be aware of...A child needs to learn basic manners, what is right and wrong, to respect their elders, believe in God or a Higher Power, and education is so important. I know things are different here in the US, but I would like to think that there are some programs like that in SA. Parent involvement in their child's life is the most important thing there is, to to teach the young about the right, moral, God's way to live. More parents need to be involved in a positive way. Then there remains the question "How would one accomplish that in SA?" I do not know but pray it will happen for the children's sake. I think about the time I spent living in PE and I pray to God that things will change for the positive for everyone living there. Equal rights, compassion and kindness for all is what I wish for your country's future. But that topic is another blog all by itself. I know this is long so edit it if you like.
Love to All

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