Monday, September 5, 2011

Little Girls in Beauty Contests - For What Reason?

I have an "almost" 3 year old granddaughter who is a true beauty. She'll take your breath away with her vivid blue eyes and curly blond hair. On the front side of that, I am the mother of three daughters. All extremely beautiful inside and out; they are truly the lights of my life. As they were growing up, only God and I know how many times I was approached about putting them in "show biz" or modeling or advertising. Over and over. Call me callous, but I walked away from every offer without a blink.

Maybe you didn't. Maybe you have attempted to enter your daughter into the world of glamor in one way or another. I will not and do not judge you. I really don't, but I am interested in hearing your reasoning. And encourage you to "get off the tiara bandwagon" if you will. For the sake of your daughter. Her future. Her self-esteem. Her clarification of who she really is.

We all have heard the story of JonBenet Ramsey and the dark mysterious nuances of her death. But are you aware of men like John Mark Karr who prey on these little girls made into women too soon? Read the story about him here. He is just one of too-too many predators of young children.

Have you seen pictures of some of these young beauty queens? I do not wish to post pictures of toddlers metamorphosed into beautiful, mature looking women on here. It seems like a violation to me, but a quick Google search will give your more than you can take - if you feel as I do. It sad. It's disturbing. It hurts to see these young girls' childhood painted away with every sweep of a makeup or hair brush. Yet, the parents' (singular or collective) allow it. For what reason?

As a mother, I have always wanted my daughters to grow up knowing that they were valuable for much more than their bodies. That God created them for a well-defined purpose. And never did I feel any part of that purpose was for the gratification of society or for the sake of making money with their bodies. Never. God is too holy to design such a plan; my daughters too precious to flaunt in such a way. Aren't our children gifts? Priceless gifts?

Below is a (not exhaustive) list of why I never put my daughters in contests of the "beauty" nature:

1. Protection of my daughters (mind, body, spiritual, emotional)
2. Sends out mixed signals of what part of the child is deemed important to her parents & others involved
3. Young children do not have the capability to process the difference in a contest & real life
4. Failure to succeed at such a young age as a "beauty" princess or whatever you want to call it could define decisions and actions made in future years by the child.
(Think even of high school homecoming queens. I did have one daughter who was one of three girls chosen to represent her senior class. The entire process was exhausting for both her and me.)

Take a look at this video. (I am not a fan of Perez Hilton's website, but was the best place to view this video)

I have never watched Toddlers & Tiaras - probably never will - but this is extremely unsettling. Does a 3-year old even know what this means? Perhaps not. But the mother who bought those boots, the wig, and the mini skirt does. Doesn't she?

The first five years of a child's life are of paramount importance to development in every area of her life. Have we forgotten this in our efforts to gain notoriety? Fame? Money? Clout? Personal satisfaction (at the cost of our children)?

Talk to me. What do you think?