10 Ways To Keep Your Kids From Growing Up Too Fast


child pageant princess queen makeup girl toddler tiara
Why children need childhood and what you can do to make sure they get it.

I was people-watching at a posh restaurant while waiting for my friend to join me. People with money, power, expensive clothes, cars, and dates arrived. I began wondering what I was doing; was the great food going to somehow make this display of affluence okay? I was underdressed and evaluating that in my mind, when all of a sudden I heard someone laugh. It wasn't the laugh that caught my attention, but rather the lack of laughter from most of the guests there. In fact, prior to her laugh, people had the right clothes and accessories, but none of them looked very happy. These people were what Sidney Sheldon would call social skeletons.

Magazines, TV and music are all focused on bodies. Thin, young, and beautiful bodies make claim to more money, power, and fame. Our youth has never had a narrower concept of beauty, nor have they ever had the pressure of being able to pose for a photo and have millions view it from a social network. Our young people's minds aren't fully developed until the age of 22 years, and yet they can have plastic surgery, Botox, and other cosmetic procedures to help them fit into that narrow concept of beauty at six (with their parent's blessings).

On the cover of Vogue Magazine some months ago, there was a photo of a ten year old girl in fishnet stockings, red lipstick, a short dress, and red heels lounging on a sofa. The title had something to do with the new version of beauty. What in the world is going on? Do men/women really sexually desire a ten year old dressed up like a twenty five year old? If so, what are the personality traits of these perpetrators, and how did they become so powerful that the advertisers are now boasting padded bras for eight and nine year olds and clothes that reveal more than most thirty year old women would be embarrassed to show? Good Date Ideas from Yummy Mummy

The most distressing part of all of this is that when a society sexualizes children, there is no going back. You cannot take a six year old and make them a beauty queen, shower them with photographs and accolades and then tell them, "Okay, it's over. You can go back to being a normal little girl now." Once a child is forced into that media-driven craze, there is no way to redeem the innocence stolen from their childhood. Parents who "fix" their children cosmetically have implicitly told their child, "You do have a problem with your appearance, and you aren't okay." If we fix it, you will be more accepted. Eight times out of ten when I see a child who is sent to me prior to plastic surgery and I meet the mother, it is she who needs the therapy.

With some, issues of childhood cosmetic surgery are appropriate. I have seen birth defects, burns and other accidents that require cosmetic surgery for further physical and emotional healing. This is not the sort of cosmetic surgery to which I am referring.

Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Mary Jo Rapini


For more information go to: www.maryjorapini.com
Talk to me on my fan page: http://www.facebook.com/maryjorapini
Tweet me: @MaryJoRapini
Read my Love and Relationships Blog on Chron.com
Ask me questions on Fox26 in Houston, TX and watch every Thursday Morning at 9am for “Mind, Body, Soul with Mary Jo” and Friday Morning's at 8am for “Healthy Happy Hour with Mary Jo”

Location: Houston, TX
Credentials: LPC
Other Articles/News by Mary Jo Rapini:

Sleeping In The Nude: Does What You Wear To Bed Affect Intimacy?


A recent survey published by Cotton USA reveals that 57 percent of married couples who sleep nude report being happy with their partner. Roughly half of all couples do sleep nude and approximately half of those are over the age of 55. Is it the nudity itself helping couples feel happier with their partner or is the nudity symbolic for something deeper that ... Read more

5 Ways To Survive A Friend Unfriending You


A group of my colleagues and friends were talking about losing good friends. One of my friends' situations was a job promotion and a change of location. Her friend cut her off, didn't want to be her friend anymore, and un-friended her on Facebook, leaving her feeling confused and mistrusting. Had this person been a friend at all? Another friend told ... Read more

Fighting Fair Made Easy In Six Easy Steps


http://youtu.be/-_G4NpWgyNQ   The one area that most couples do not explore before they get married is "how to fight". It may seem derogatory, or somehow cynical to focus on how you will fight with each other when you are beginning a new life together, but nothing could be further from the truth. Learning to fight fair has health benefits as ... Read more

See More


Sign up for our daily email and get the stories everyone is talking about.

Ask The Experts

Have a dating or relationship question?
Visit Ask YourTango and let our experts and community answer.