You know what drives me crazy? I’ve mentioned it before, but I’ll say it again: seeing a child in a movie theater watching a movie that is completely inappropriate for a child. Why in the world are parents in such a hurry to expose their children to adult themes and images? And I’m don’t just mean gore or sexuality . . . I think children should be protected from ideas with which adults must grapple. I don’t want my kids to worry about things that adults worry about. I take my job very seriously and a large part of my job is keeping my children safe, both physically and emotionally. Thus, I guard their minds and hearts and eyes. Judging from the local theater, not everyone thinks like me. Shocking! (No, really, how can that be when I am so smart and . . . well, so right?) You might call me overprotective, but I prefer to think of myself as the protective wall between my kids and harm.
That’s one reason I appreciate the newly launched website “We Believe in Girls.” I can stand behind a site that says:
We also believe that the pressure on girls to grow up fast, to dress up “fast,” to cut the midriff shorter, pout the lips out further, pierce everything earlier — that all this mad, headlong rush toward early sophistication* may have gone a bit too far.
I believe that, too. I want my daughter to play with dolls, to be oblivious to teenage concerns (make-up, boys, high-heels, shorts with words written across the backside!), to be as unselfconscious for as long as possible. I don’t want her to want highlights in her hair and lipstick on her mouth and a sparkly cell phone with which to call boys until she is . . . well, twenty-three. Or at least thirteen. What’s the rush?
When my daughter grows up, I want her to have choices, true choices about what she wants to be and do with her life. I hope I can give her the tools and education and confidence to become a doctor . . . or an artist . . . or a stay-at-home mother . . . or a secretary . . . or an accountant . . . whatever she wants to become. I want her to understand that you don’t have to do it all, be it all or have it all at the exact same time. Life is a journey with many stops along the way . . . but if you are lucky, you choose a good companion and fill your suitcase with stuff that will help you along the way (excellent reading material, a great education, solid friends, a sturdy belief system, confidence).
Anyway, join in on the conversation. Take the poll. Poke around on that website and see if anything resonates with you. I know it did with me.