Author Box
Articles Categories
All Categories
Articles Resources

Child Beauty Pageants? Just Plain Ugly!

April 19, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 141

I admit to enjoying (?) the odd episode of "Toddlers and Tiara's." It was fascinating and despite the fact it made me uncomfortable and occasionally disturbed, I couldn't look away!

I have to say, I'm proud of many Australian mothers who took the time to make a stand against child beauty pageants in response to its attempted introduction into Australian culture.

The unfortunate reality though, is that child beauty pageants are just an extreme example of what is already happening to our children. The sexualisation, the objectification and the encouragement of materialism and superficiality are occurring daily. Most of the time we don't realise it or understand our role in enabling it.

Some of us who are truly outraged at the idea would also be outraged if we realized how much sexualisation of little girls we allow in our everyday lives and how much we encourage them to place (greater than necessary) value on their appearance.

How are our girls being sexualized?

Basically, because our culture is sexualized. Our kids are bombarded with sexual images everyday when they walk through a shopping mall, when they look out the window in the car, when they glance at the TV when we're watching the news and moreso, if they're allowed to watch commercial TV.. They also learn from us and what they see us value and place importance upon. They are yet to understand what it truly means to be 'sexual' but by age 6, little girls already believe that being fat is ugly and being thin is beautiful and that nice clothes have something to do with getting attention and feeling good.

But what is concerning is not only is it sexualizing them, it's teaching them that superficiality and materialism are a significant and acceptable part of everyday life.

Surely, we want more for our kids!

We love to comment when we see a child wearing a cute jacket or pretty dress because let's face it, kid's clothes are pretty darn cute! But I wonder what message this is really sending to little people.

Already young children are aware that looking good often receives adult approval, attention and compliments and through that, they learn to place value on what they look like. Of course, children may receive compliments for a variety of things but often the first thing we say to another child is "don't you look cute!" or "what a gorgeous jacket!" and when we do so, we reinforce the idea that what they look like or what they wear matters.

What can we do to stop this?

I have a beautiful, wise friend who is the most humble person I know. She quite honestly places no value on beauty or clothing, truly believing that the way to teach her kids to understand their true value is to set an example herself. One thing that she does consciously is take the emphasis off what other people look like. Rather than saying "You look nice" as the first thing you say to a friend - you just don't say anything. When we continually compliment people on what they look like we reinforce the concept to others (and ourselves) that appearance is highly valuable. It also makes us more likely to notice what other people look like or wear.

So, I started to try this. I stopped complimenting friends on what they looked like and tried to find other ways to compliment and encourage them. I began to notice a huge change in myself. I quite honestly stopped noticing what other people were wearing because I stopped placing a value on it. When a friend commented that she'd noticed I'd become particularly attached to one of my tops I felt completely shocked. I would have had no idea if someone had worn the same top for days in a row because it was suddenly unimportant and dis-interesting to me. It made me realize how superficial I had been and how desperately I didn't want to be like that.

Sexualisation, materialism and superficiality are ingrained in our culture and something that won't change unless we as parents, recognize it and change ourselves.

I think it's time we make a stand and teach our children to value themselves for who they are. We need to place the focus on their character, their kindness, their sweetness, their generosity, their sense of humour, and to some extent their unique gifts and abilities. We have to learn to go against the flow of our culture to teach our children the RIGHT places to draw their worth and value.

It's about awakening our consciousness and and desiring something deeper and more authentic for ourselves, and ultimately, our kids.

So, what do I think of child beauty pageants? They're just plain ugly.

For more information about the seuxalisation of young girls and the influence of the media and advertising visit

Source: EzineArticles
Was this Helpful ?

Rate this Article

Article Tags:

Child Beauty Pageants


True Value




Popular Culture


Sexualisation Of Children



Since time immemorial unscrupulous folk have existed. The world continues to see them and they would continue to exist to the end of the world. The best you could do is sensitizing yourself to detect

By: Zuneaoy l Home & Family > Crafts Supplies l December 11, 2012 lViews: 582

What does it take to find the best prices and greatest selection when searching for jewelry supplies? Because jewelry making has become such a popular hobby, there is no shortage of locations where

By: Zuneaoy l Home & Family > Crafts Hobbies l December 11, 2012 lViews: 249

You can purchase the same thing online for a much cheaper price. Now, granted, you may find that some beads and snake bracelets are just as expensive as at the store, but you will find that online

By: Zuneaoy l Home & Family > Crafts Supplies l December 07, 2012 lViews: 330

Arborist is simply called as the nature maker in the words of a poet. They really make your garden clean, healthy and tidy. When you are having tress at your place it is necessary to check them up or

By: noragwilt l Home & Family > Gardening l November 20, 2012 lViews: 311

To make sure you gain true protection, it is of paramount importance that these covers ought to be durable and strong. To make sure you gain true protection, it is of paramount importance that these

By: Simon Liva l Home & Family > Entertaining l November 16, 2012 lViews: 269

If you wish to throw a birthday celebration party, you should have a lot of money. A number of people think that if perhaps they cannot dedicate such a lot money for the celebration, it won’t

By: jhoel mojokuvic l Home & Family > Entertaining l November 12, 2012 lViews: 286

I recently wrote about what we know from research about the negative effects of too much media exposure for children. That leaves families with the question of what to do about it in their own homes.

By: Dr Carolyn Stonel Home & Family > Parentingl June 15, 2012 lViews: 208

Doctors may advise parents that bedwetting up to the age of five or six may still be considered as normal. However, there are a few cases when some kids do not simply outgrow their bedwetting

By: David Hearnsl Home & Family > Parentingl June 14, 2012 lViews: 164

Have you ever thought of making an everlasting difference in the life of a child who is in need? Becoming a foster carer is one way to accomplish exactly that. It goes without saying that the job is

By: Steve Hilll Home & Family > Parentingl June 14, 2012 lViews: 169

We mentioned six components which must be evident in our family relationships in order to promote family unity. These components are the keys to correcting failures, and instituting a powerful

By: Ezechiel Bambolo, Jrl Home & Family > Parentingl June 13, 2012 lViews: 157

It is common for parents of teenagers to become frustrated and embarrassed by their teenager's appearance. This article offers some tips for parents who are concerned, frustrated or just unsure what

By: Karen Vincentl Home & Family > Parentingl June 12, 2012 lViews: 188

Listening seems like a very basic skill but following these tips can make a difference with teenagers and can significatnly improve your relationship with your teen. This article provides specific

By: Karen Vincentl Home & Family > Parentingl June 12, 2012 lViews: 220

Motherhood is challenging in today's society. We are under more pressure than ever to get it right. But where does the pressure come from? Is it from popular culture or is it simply that we have

By: Tara N Forcel Home & Family > Motherhoodl May 07, 2012 lViews: 149

Why would you choose to homeschool? What was once a choice full of judgement and stereotypes is now something I find strangely appealing. Read about some reasons why homeschooling may work for you

By: Tara N Forcel Home & Family > Parentingl April 19, 2012 lViews: 104

Does commercialism influence our children? We have to battle against commercialism if we truly believe that WE should be the one's raising our children and NOT the corporations who drive popular

By: Tara N Forcel Home & Family > Parentingl April 19, 2012 lViews: 109

What is wrong with my child? What do we do when our children are just, different? I detail the challenges of raising a spirited child and how I found peace with my son's uniqueness. I discovered that

By: Tara N Forcel Home & Family > Parentingl April 19, 2012 lViews: 115

The yummy mummy idea has become idolised. It's made new mothers even more paranoid and self-conscious about the way they look. It also takes the focus off what is actually important - being a good

By: Tara N Forcel Home & Family > Motherhoodl April 19, 2012 lViews: 114

Over the years, I've discovered so many of the perceptions and beliefs we have about motherhood and parenting are influenced by the media and advertising. We are often fooled by the message that we

By: Tara N Forcel Home & Family > Babies Toddlerl April 18, 2012 lViews: 120

Discuss this Article

comments powered by Disqus