OK, people, I know you’ve watched at least one of these shows. I have watched two episodes of Dance Moms and about 8 of Big Rich Texas. I absolutely refuse to watch Toddlers in Tiaras. Those of you who have watched Toddlers in Tiaras most likely have put the number for Child Protective Services on speed dial. I don’t blame you. The idea of dressing little girls up like grown women disturbs and disgusts me. Little girls ought to be little girls, NOT GROWN ASS WOMEN!!! Let’s tackle one issue at a time, ok?
Little kids take dance classes, and if they like it (or their parents force them to say they like it) they’ll keep at it long enough to audition for the show “Fame” or the school it’s based upon. After watching just two episodes last night, I have to wonder just how much these kids really like dancing. I took it briefly, but it was over 20 years ago. I remember having fun with it and my parents weren’t cutthroat about it like these moms, and the teacher wasn’t looking for Broadway perfection like the dance teacher on Dance Moms. Some of these mothers take it far more seriously then their daughters! Don’t get me wrong, the kids do a great job and they are serious about what they do. But they’re also KIDS! They have fun and they’re with their friends. One mother pulled her daughter out of practice because she pitched a bitch fit with the instructor over her daughter not getting a solo performance. I’m sure the daughter wanted a solo, but not badly enough to throw a tantrum like her mom did. Seriously? Grown men and women don’t (and shouldn’t) do that. I’m 29, and if I don’t agree with something, I simply say so in the most respectful way possible, not go up to my (hypothetical) daughter’s teacher and tell her how to do her job. You might get a bug up your ass, but your child suffers the most out of this. The behavior the moms exhibit also teaches the kids that the best way to get your way or to be heard is if you show your ass in public. Nice. Real nice. These parents are pushing their kids to the point where the moms are spinning their heads 360 degrees over something that probably isn’t that big a deal to their kids. As for the teacher? You took your kid to her because you knew she could teach your daughter what she needs to know to be her best. If you don’t like it, pull her out and either find another activity your child will like or put her in another studio, but don’t act a fool in front of people. Handle that privately. You’re already hurting your child by making her into a little “diva” before she even hits her teens (at which point she’ll already be a diva of her own making).
Toddlers in Tiaras
Oh, goodness, where do I start? Did we not learn anything from the JonBenet case? Mothers, please, don’t dress your baby girls up like they’re going to prom. There’s plenty of time for that. I’ve seen children on shows like this who looked like they were in their late teens to early 20’s. That’s not natural. Do you know how many child molesters there are out there who are probably buying tickets to your kid’s pageant? I damn sure wouldn’t want my (hypothetical) daughter to be a part of this. It almost seems as if you’re pimping your kids out for the world to see. And if you watch shows like this, you’ll see the girls are whining and screaming because they want to go play with their friends and be normal kids. But what are you having them do? You’re taking them to get tanned, perming their hair, tweezing their eyebrows and putting on makeup that you and your club hopping friends wear on Saturdays nights (don’t hate, you know you do). Dads, get involved in your daughters’ lives. And I don’t mean get involved in getting them prepped for these events, I mean getting involved in their lives to be sure that your daughters don’t get put into dangerous situations, and trust me when I say this counts as one.
Big Rich Texas
This isn’t exactly about parents who put their kids in harms way, but there is one woman on the show who absolutely insists on pimping out her goddaughter. And the child is fighting back by telling her godmother “no, I’m not doing this anymore!” I respect her for that. At one point the girl wanted to be Miss America, but with her having a job, being in school and working to get the godmother’s business up and running, she hardly has time to be a teenager. She’s 18, let her be 18. She’s an adult now, but she’s still young. Let her have her youth for crying out loud! At 18 I was in college and stressing over mid-terms and finals. Enough with the pageants and let your goddaughter be herself. Kudos for her having a job and going to college, but leave her alone on the rest. And keep her out of the “country club” circles. Let her have some normal friends.
Parents, be parents and not micro-manage every aspect of your little angel’s life. Try having a normal parent-child relationship with them and not sign them up for these reality shows that showcase how little you regard your child. Say what you want, but it doesn’t seem as though these parents are thinking in terms of what is truly in the best interests of the kids, but more of what the parents can gain out of the success of the child. If you want to see some trophies on the wall, then YOU go out and do something that helps you win a trophy. YOU go out and enter Mrs. New York or Mrs. America. YOU enter a bowling league. Leave the kids out of this and let them have a normal upbringing and develop a normal body image. Let them enjoy life. Let them enjoy their childhood. Your kids are only going to get one shot at this, so make it count.