Friday, April 24, 2009

Why Can't We Let Children be Children?

I'm sure most of you are familiar with the phrase, "A picture is worth a thousand words." Well, I found this on the celebrity gossip site I peruse obsessively and felt inspired to write.

Miley Cyrus' parents are everything that is wrong with our society. Raising a child is incredibly difficult--it's a balancing act, it's having to be the bad guy more often than not, it's saying no to what might seem your child's greatest desire ... and then having to live forever with the look in their eyes.

Every time I look at this picture, my brain keeps screaming, "She's sixteen. Sixteen!" And, of course, my reference point is my fourteen-year-old daughter, Addie as well as, to a somewhat lesser degree, my high school students.

All children break rules, particularly adolescents, I'm aware of that, probably even more aware than some. However, any child (and sixteen is child--just have a conversation with the vast majority of them ... you'll see what I mean) that is allowed to dress like that--and then be accompanied by her freaking father--that's just a loaded gun situation. Some might say it's a persona, it's a role she plays, but what kind of parents would use a sixteen-year-old as a financial and power pawn that way? Not only does Miley Cyrus not seem to have rules to break, her parents seem to be hell-bent on knocking down the norms of society as well in their dubious raising.

I might care less if I didn't have young daughters. This is not a role model I want them to emulate--but Miley/Hannah Montana, sort of like rocks on the beach, seems to turn up everywhere.

And I won't even get started on trying to find clothes for a five-year-old that don't make her look like a prostitute in training.