Angela L. Ardolino of Tampa Bay Parenting, TBParenting.com
The adolescent stage of your daughter’s life is the most impressionable period for them. They will look to any source of information, which will inevitable influence their characteristics, beliefs and standards. Certainly T.V. plays a large part in what she is exposed to. Nowadays you see girls getting spray tanned, waxed and wearing high heels in kindergarten. Why? Because they’re probably saw it somewhere.
"Increasingly over the past 10 years, we've seen an escalation in the sexualization of young girls," says Deborah Tolman, professor of social welfare and psychology and founding director of the ASAP Initiative, which does research and analysis of sexuality for action and policy. "There's an inappropriate imposition of sexuality on young girls, and, as girls enter adolescence, they're learning to sexualize themselves," she says.
The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, which Tolman is a part of, is a organization comprised of academic, celebrities and filmmakers that has made it’s mission to combat the over sexualization of the media and marketing practices.
With the media having a 24/7 in your families life, it is important to realize the impact it has on your kids and take action. Here are some tips to help parents with young girls…and boys.
Don’t Buy In
Help your kids stay kids by not buying outfits, makeup, and other "grown up" accessories. Don’t give into the begging. This just enables your child even more. State your case as to why you’re not buy the product and move on. Set the rules and stick to them. Earrings, cellphones, makeup, etc.
Seek Out Positive Role Models
Help expand their horizons by finding role models in books, on TV, in movies, and in real life that show kids how they can be recognized for their talents and brains rather than their looks or behavior. Nothing is more important than children gaining self esteem and attention from their talents rather than what they are wearing or what they look like.
Help Them Develop A Healthy Self-Image
Help them figure out whether they're acting out of their own motivations or trying to be more popular by fitting someone else's ideal. When they love themselves they can love you and grow.
Resist Consumerist Messages
When spending a mother-daughter day try something other than shopping or going to the movies. Enforce the message of spending time together not spending money.
Like in anything else, as the parent you must take charge. Expecting your child’s teacher’s, friend’s parents or even your spouse to the work. Take charge and instill the message you want in your child’s life.
To read more about this or get more insightful tips visit www.commonsensemedia.org.