Did anyone See Jenny Jones today?

KerryClemDecember 6, 2001

I don't usually watch talk shows, and hers is one I really try not to see, but it was on as I was folding laundry and they were talking about mothers entering their young (infant - 10 years old) daughters into pagents, complete with full makeup, false lashes, fake tans, hair extensions and thousand dollar plus dresses..... Am I the only one that thinks this is sending the message to young girls that you have to compete and be catty and be artificial to get anywhere in life? This just really irked me because all the little girls were saying that winnig was their favorite thing and none of them looked at all like happy little girls - they looked miserable!

Please tell me that I am not insane for thinking that these mothers are out of their minds....

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I didn't see it, but read an article on baby pagents recently. Like adult beauty pagents, I think that these events are objectifying, degrading, and teach young girls the wrong lessons about their worth.

I don't understand why any mother would force this on her daughter.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2001 at 2:42PM
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I think the children on the show were miserable because the audience was hostile. Beauty pageants are one thing, but subjecting their daughters to ridicule and insults on national television is something else.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2001 at 2:56PM
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There was a freaky documentary on HBO about pageants not too long ago.

It was downright disturbing.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2001 at 6:44PM
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I didnt see it but the thought of it drives me nuts. I go to town in rubber boots and flannel shirts (work I dress better) and still cant understand anyone getting made up at any age to try to look fake especially a child.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2001 at 10:03PM
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I agree I think most of those types of parents are trying to make up for something they didn't have in their childhood. I didn't see the show, but I've seen shows like that. Not trying to sound rude, but the mothers of these types of children are usually very ugly and very overweight. Makes you kind of wonder who they are really doing it for doesn't it?

    Bookmark   December 7, 2001 at 1:41AM
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When my sister and I were small, my mom used to put us in pageants. THey were nothing to the degree of the pageants these children are in, but they were still pageants. We would have the 3 layers of makeup on and sit under the dryer for what seemed like an eternity to get our curls to set right. I'll bet it took about 3 hours to get ready for them. We loved every minute of it. It was like dress-up on a larger scale. My mom was not one of the ones who was fat and ugly although there were some. I still have the first trophy I ever won. I have all my crowns and sashes too. I'll bet in all I was in about 35 pageants a year from the time I was 4 until I was 10. There were mothers that were horrible to the kids if they lost. I remember one little girl screaming because she didn't want to be there but her mother mad her. One mother sat there and put down all the other little girls telling her daughter that she was so much prettier than the rest of us. The majority of the mothers were nice though. Everyone has a different opinion about the pageants. I am for them.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2001 at 4:47AM
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None of my kids were ever in pageants and I never considered it. But I don't understand why it's such a touchy issue for girls when parents do the same thing with sports without being looked down on. Is it really that different than the parents who have their 5 year old boys playing T-ball softball or midget football in the hopes that they'll end up geting an athletic scholarship down the road? Isn't that sending the same message that using your body will bring rewards? We applaud 13 year old gymnasts in the Olympics whose parents spend as much time and money on preparation of their "show" as the pageant kids do. Just something to think about.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2001 at 7:33AM
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Just for the record, I have a huge problem with most sports programs too, and the fact that parents are pushing their chidren to win, win, win.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2001 at 8:34AM
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Ruthana - you are so correct. It's been awhile since my 20 year old dd played "grade school" soccer. Wow - talk about cut throat! I still get angry about the 7th grade basketball coach calling the girls "stupid", etc. etc. And parents just stood there and took it.

By the way, why would anyone subject themselves to appearing on Jenny Jones? (Or any of those idiotic shows?)

    Bookmark   December 7, 2001 at 8:43AM
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The same reason they would dress their 2 year old in so much hair and makeup that they look like mini 20 year olds - attention.....

    Bookmark   December 7, 2001 at 10:30AM
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I disagree that sports and beauty pagents are equivalent. Sports encourage physical fitness, teamwork, and allow for the development of eye/hand coordination. Developmental research shows that kids, especially girls, who are involved in sports, have higher levels of self-esteem and academic performance. And while it's true that we tend to elevate the star player, being on a sports team gives other kids the chance to develop skills, form friendships, and make a contribution. Who didn't love that last scene of Hoosiers when the goofy loser kid makes the winning shot? There's certainly no equivalent to that in beauty pagents.
Beauty pagents teach girls that the only thing that matters is how they look; not what they do, not the skills they acquire, etc. etc.

In the cases where 7year olds are cut throat, I'd bet the problem isn't the kids, or the sports -- but the adults.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2001 at 11:20AM
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About the beauty pagents... I never paid attention to that stuff until the JonBenet thing a few years back. I watched in horror the stuff she had to go thru. She actually was made up to look "sexy". NO way should a young child like that look remotely sexy. Made me sick, to see how much crap she had on her face and the daring clothes she had on. Yeah the trophies looked nice and it probably boosted her self esteem (and no doubt, boosted her mother's self esteem since she was a fading beauty queen), but the child never had a chance to be "a child".

I'm not sure what the pagents teach (besides style and grace, but who cares about that?). Hopefully my daughter won't want to partake in them. Never have I entered her into a pagent, even tho she is downright beautiful, and *could* win. I tell her all the time that inner beauty and personalty, wit, brains, etc., are way more important than having a perfect body and gorgeous hair. I have instilled that into her and hope it sticks.

Just the other night, the Barbie Twins were on TV, talking about their plight of being "forced" into Bulemia in order to keep their perfect bodies. I was appalled at how UGLY these two blondes were. They had on sunglasses to hide their plastic eyes. Their upper lips were so fully injected with collagen that they couldn't talk right. Their skin, in pictures, looks flawless and air brushed... but on this show, their skin was pocked and heavily crusted in make up. And guys think THIS is beauty???? The one Barbie's boobs were so big and her body was so frail looking, she was hunched over. Can't support those large plastic things I guess.

Anyway, my point is, I guess everyone's tastes are different. Some parents dream that their sons will be the baseball star and be famous. Some parents dream that their daughters will be adored by all and winning pagents left and right. I'm just one of those parents who dreams of watching my child grow up into a self confident, secure woman. She wears what is comfortable, her straight hair remains straight, and make up won't touch her pretty face until she's a teen (unless it's playing/make-believe). If she even needs make-up... after all... she is beautiful.


- darkeyedgirl

    Bookmark   December 7, 2001 at 11:37AM
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Darkeyedgirl - you and I sound a lot alike ;o)

    Bookmark   December 7, 2001 at 12:22PM
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KerryClem -- I think any mother who has a daughter should feel this way (The way you and I feel!). There are some warped parents out there who force this crap upon their children.

I am totally for it if a child WANTS to play sports, sing, play the piano, or be in a beauty pagent, but if the mother grooms the child from birth to be this way, has high hopes for the child, etc., they are just force-feeding them.


- darkeyedgirl

    Bookmark   December 7, 2001 at 4:15PM
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My DD has been involved in pagents since she was 2 1/2 (she is now 4 1/2). We do roughly 4-6 pageants a yr and recently took 6 month off. Here is why we took off... DD made it the the national finals for a pageant system. We had ot stay the weekend. The fist day she had a lot of fun. The second day (the day of the competition)she didn't want to go onstage until after her time was up. I really thought the only problem was no family could make it and she as always use to having DH, DS and my mother in the audience. While we were getting ready for the party that evening she fell asleep and it was apparent she was not feeling well (it wasn't until this itme she started showing signs of not feeling well). In her 3yr old mind it was the pageant that made her sick (she had a mild UTI). I waited 3 months and she still wasn't interested so I was preparing to sell all her pageant wear. Just sop happened one of the talk shows was having a show on pageants one morning and she walked in as I was watchign it. Well she had the "pageant bug" again and we have started out slowly. This past weekend our only goal was for her to smile on stage (she won best smile). The pageant beofre that is was just to get on stage. Her next one is in Feb and our goal is for her to not look at her feet, me etc during her "walks".

I have learned what peageant lines are good and schich are not. The last one we did is a scollarship fund. 2 of the judges were former winners attending college thanks to the pageants. One line we do does not allow false eyelashes, hair extensions etc (nor does the scollarship one). the 3rd does allow them but for 10 and up (not that we would ever use them).
Our typical pagreant wardrobe cost less than what some of the mothers spend on one dress. I buy second had (usually Ebay) sew it myself or buy something plain and decorate it myself.
I avoid the pageants that are more "copetition" than fun.
DD does get a lot out of them. She was (and still is ) a tomboy. She can now at least act like a little girl when needed (ie church). Many systems do a lot of comunity work such as going to nursing homes, animal shelters etc.
Just like all little league teams aare not bad neither are all pareants. You just need to do a lot of leg work and find the good ones.
BTW the pageant DD went to nationals...In the pageant she won to qualify to go to nationals she beat 2 "big name girls" from the very glitzy pageants. I kept DD away from the nastiness of these 2 women who were so upset their daughters didn't the went after the director and the judges (verbally). I believe they were banned for "life" from this system.
DD also participates in gymnastics and soccer. If she wanted to drop pageants then we would no questions asked. Her stuff would soon go up on E bay and that would be that.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2001 at 11:41PM
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