Televison Shows On Disney & Nickelodeon Promoting Superficiality & Sometimes, Even Sexuality. It Must Stop!
Television! What Is It Doing To Our Children?
Twinkies 5.75 mo. old
Ok, I got to say, TV has changed a lot since my day, and not for the better. Seems like even for the younger children, a lot of shows are all about superficiality, looks, makeup, hair, getting everything you want, being spoiled, money, and fame. Is this what we want our kids to be all about?
Hard enough when I didn’t feel like I measured up and became self conscious, shy, and even depressed, in school, over my exterior and feeling judged, but I didn’t have all of these images, and icons shoved in my face making it that much harder, so I can’t begin to imagine how much worse it will be/ is, for this current and for the future generation of tweens and teens. I’m glad I wasn’t born now, that is for sure. Why are even channels like Disney & Nickelodeon promoting such unhealthy ideals for our children?
I’m in no was saying that these channels are ALL bad. There are many, terrific, programs for little ones, and older kids, on these stations, However, there are some that are NOT, is all I’m trying to say, and even gearing them towards the older tweens & teens, is wrong, because they have the same negative effect, and you’ll read below what I mean.
Cartoons are harmless (Except the adult aimed ones, which sometimes come on too early in my opinion, but are easier to keep kids away from), but if you have a child like mine, or one that just is a tad older, because my daughter at 2 talked like a 4 year old, she has a photographic memory, is super smart, and things always bore her easily, so she had graduated onto wanting more than simple cartoons at an earlier age then some, which was a definite curse. I was constantly battling her over the television issue, now she is respecting my wishes more, but for a parent, it’s hard.
You will know what I mean, if you sit back and watch these shows with your children. The words, pretty, ugly, stupid, idiot, do not need to be in the sentences of childhood television shows. Now, I was fine at 4 1/2, with my Mikayla, watching a little I Carly, or Hannah Montana which she enjoys. Those shows are pretty harmless. I mean Hannah is a rock star, but she’s a real person to, and she doesn’t say you got to be like me, to be special and important. It’s not the kind of show I’m including in here. I Carly even me as a mom, can get into, and some other moms I have talked with, feel the same.
But other shows such as ‘Sonny with a chance’, which isn’t one of the worst ones, but I’ll explain the problem with it in a moment, and the ones that erk me most ‘Suite life on deck’, with the twins Zack and Cody, and it’s not the twins, that I have a problem with, and a fairly new show called Victorious. These shows, CLEARLY, I believe, are all pumping garbage into our children’s brains, about who or what they should be, and how they should look, and act. That is simply wrong, in this mother’s opinion.
I don’t care if your child is 5 or 11, these shows are NOT good for our children, and they are banned from being watched in my household. WHY? Here are a couple of reasons.
#1- They promote an UNHEALTHY self esteem, and feelings of inadequacy. Characters like suite life’s, London Tipton, who is all about herself, her looks, how perfect she thinks she is, and how rich and spoiled she is, and her little attitude that goes along with it, when she talks, is unacceptable in my opinion. Why must these characters exist, in children’s tv shows, during a time in their lives where self esteem is being formed? It’s about the stupidest thing Disney could do. Do you want our kids to think this is all that matters most in life?
I saw this character rub off on my daughter after some time, and at first i thought the show was harmless, and then when I got to hearing some back talk like, ‘Are you happy now’, and ‘Get me my juice ‘Ok’ with a twang on the Ok, if you know what I mean, I knew something was up.
Then my daughter started going around, wanting lip stick, and dressing up, trying to look like this character, and often saying ‘I’m not as pretty as this girl, or that girl’. At this age? PLEASE. I spent hours with Barbie dolls in my own little imaginary world a 4 and 5 years old, even older. Enjoyed drawing pictures, and singing in my room. Vanity NEVER entered my mind. What is the world coming to, when innocence is taken away, from the things that influence our kids (T.V), hence robbing their own innocence from them. It was never this way before!
Bring back THIS kind of simplistic fun & Innocence….
Mikayla was angry when I figured out what was up, with the Suite Life show, and the show was quickly banned until she turns 13. Hopefully it won’t be on by then. Her attitude seemed to go back to normal pretty much, until the day before last. I go by her room, and she’s hiking up a skirt to look more short, like a ‘mini’, and has her shirt off of her shoulder. I hardly believed what escape her lips moments later. ‘Do I look hot?’ She said. Ok, what does ‘hot’ even mean at this age, and what should it mean? I’ll tell you, it should mean, a cup of hot alphabet soup, in my opinion. I was floored, and me and dad had to step in on this one, and have a stern talk with her.
Not only do these shows warp minds into thinking they need to be beautiful, and if you aren’t you just don’t measure up, but it’s also…
#2- Sexualizing our children, decades too soon. Should we let these idols our children watch, make our children pedophile bait? When kids are wanting to wear mini skirts and belly shirts, you know there is a problem with influences around them, and chances are, it ain’t coming from Mom.
Seriously, what does Disney & Nickelodeon, think that they are doing? Why the risque clothing sometimes? And also if you notice the pretty popular people are not only gorgeous, but thin as stick figures. What else does that tell our kids? Be a size zero, or you’ll become one? I’m sorry this just doesn’t sit well with me at all.
I sat down and quickly figured out the problem, when I saw Victoria Justice’s sister in an off the shoulder top, just like my daughter was doing to her shirt, (trying to do any way), putting on her makeup, acting very superficial and I said ‘Oh no, not another one.’ Seems Disney needs one of these characters on every single freakin show lately. Another show BANNED, in our home. She ranted and cried, but got over it!
Oh and the problem with Sonny with A chance, is the same. Sonny is a lovely young girl, completely someone to look up to, but there they had to go again, by adding a character, like Tawny Hart, who is yet another self absorbed, self centered person, who lives for her looks, and if a child is thinking of their looks before they even hit junior high school, to me, there is a problem. Also, I heard her make a comment during the show, on how she was having plastic surgery by 30 (Her character I mean), as to not ever grow & look old. That is MADNESS!
They grow up fast enough, why give them a boost? I’m sure there are other shows I would axe, but fortunately she does not watch a ton of television, and she is watched over pretty well. With the demands of twins, I will admit, that has caused these few little things to fall through he cracks, long enough for us to notice the attitude effects, & then take swift action, however the things I personally have viewed on such shows has literally appalled me, and I’m curious to know, what other moms feel about the subject. Even a 14 year old, should they watch these things and feel like they need to be ‘better’ then what they are, or they are nothing?
These characters are creating ideals for children, that they may not ever meet, and what do they think of themselves then? Not too much. That in my mind, can lead to, depression, even suicide, withdrawal, down the line, maybe even behaviors that can get them into trouble with the law, early pregnancies, abusive relationships, falling into the wrong crowds, drugs, and alcohol. I shutter to think about it all, but these are real things, and they CAN happen. Television has more of an impact on the kids of our generations, then obviously, the writers of the shows even think.
And with these characters dressing as some of them do, does that not make our children say, ‘Oh she’s my idol, I want to be just like her, so I’ll dress like her?
Admittedly, I had this issue with my own mother, but let’s just say it was not from a TV show, and it was not until 15 years old, (Which I figured was how long I had before I had to worry about such things. HA HA on me!), but it was due to lack of parental attention, and seeking it elsewhere, so a whole different ball game here, because my children have never, and will never, be made to feel that way, but if you look around, there are more child abductions, murders, and rapes then ever before. WHY is that?
If I was in harms way 20 years ago, imagine today? Things are by far much worse now, but yet there are reasons behind that, and these shows are one of them. They lead kids to wearing makeup too soon, (or at least desiring to), wearing more sexually provocative clothing, (again, or at least trying to), even having sex too soon, in some cases, and believing it isn’t what’s on the inside, but the outside that counts, and in my mind all I can say is it’s flippin scary! It truly is. No matter how beautiful any person is, in reality.
Beauty fades externally over time, but inward beauty never dies. That is where the true beauty lies, and why can’t they see that? Shows like these, because these shows become role models, like we are, so we have some competition to contend with, mommies. I’m not saying, when your old enough, not to do things that make you feel good about yourself. I’m all for raising self esteem, with makeup, a new do, some new clothes, etc., BUT not as a child. Maybe at 18, or 20, but not before. Children should be kept as children as long as humanly possible. Childhood can never be given back, there are no second chances, sadly, and so, rushing through it, it’s just such a sad thing to me.
Back to the T.V issue….seriously, I’m one step away from throwing the television out of the house, if these new shows keep popping up like this. We do have some control over our children and what they watch most definitely, but aside from it, there is only so much we can do, who is going to stop the other 99% of children from watching also, and molding their minds, changing their thinking about what’s right and wrong, hot or not, and when our daughter’s get to school, what huge pressure is going to be placed on them to be something that maybe they are not, and can never be? That is supposed to be OK. I think not.
Trust me I thought my mom was so unfair, but I’d shred up any of my daughter’s clothing myself, if it was inappropriate in my opinion, and I’m afraid that the norm will soon become what is inappropriate. With each generation it seems to get more and more that way, is it any wonder why more children are victimized then ever before?
Do us parents a favor, Disney channel, and Nickelodeon. Go back to the days of Sesame street and Mr. Rogers. For older kids, more shows like the Brady Bunch, and Small wonder, a show I watched as a child. Bring innocence back to television, which also means, back to our children.
Kids have a hard enough time, without these things put in their heads. Forming healthy self esteem, finding their identities, making friends that are positive role models, not the other way around, and feeling like they fit in. Why are you helping to rush things, and cause an insecurity complex in most every child, especially little girls, because who can ever measure up to something created by writers, something FAKE, like a Tawny Hart or London Tipton? Who should have to?
Think about what you write, and the characters you choose. What they wear, their attitudes, and hidden sexual innuendos, because you are basically setting up this generation of young ladies, to feel like failures, and that to me, in unacceptable, and shameful.
Sorry, I had to throw my 2 cents in there. And Don’t say why can my daughter watch Hannah or something like that at only 5, she is very bright, has always been advanced, but yet sweet, until this started, and all of her little friends are watching as well, so this is what this age group is seeing folks, and that’s just fact. Not everyone, but quite a few, especially if they have older siblings at home, it makes them even more likely to view.
I keep her to the Backyardigans, Max and Ruby, Olivia, and Fresh Beat Band, as much as humanly possible, but like I said there are a some shows out there, alright for her age group, and aren’t bad for self esteem like I Carly, but the cartoons are seriously the only way to keep our kids, truly just that, kids, for longer.
I mean even Sponge Bob Square Pants, which honestly, is one of the shows I can also tolerate watching, and was around when my sons were quite small, has hidden sexual innuendos, but they are just I think to amuse the adults, but are way over the kids heads. I find that at 3, to be too much, but by 4, and Ok thing to watch, in my opinion, which doesn’t have to be shared by others. That is fine, we are all different.
The shows that have glamorized barbie dolls, saying ‘I’m perfect, look at me, me , me, everyone wants to be like me, me , me.’ That seems quite real to our kids, and that is how they want to be, and this is what they are looking up to, and it’s all fake.
Please educate your kids on what beauty truly matters. Educate them on stranger safety, more now then ever, and put a handle on the boob tube. It does rub off on our kids, and I have seen it so apparently. I’m glad I’m able to write this post and get the word out there. Some parents might have no idea, especially if they work long hours, have a new baby or babies, etc etc, so it’s time to bring this to light.
Thanks for listening & have a wonderful day. This is Shelly signing off.
PS- OH- Ok, here is an example of a cartoon even, that is about superficiality at times. Phineas and Ferb. Candace, the older sister, right now, is wanting to become a ‘Flawless girl’, for the ‘Flawless girl’ modeling agency. The words here in this episode that erk me are: FLAWLESS (Nobody is. There’s no such thing), beautiful (All children are beautiful), ugly (A word I personally have a BIG problem with). Freak (That’s really uncalled for, for a cartoon program. There were times in life, I had felt like one, and if I would have heard it on TV, oh my goodness….depression city.
The only positive I’m seeing here at the end, is that Candace realizes these things, and makes it right, saying all the right things at the end (Bravo for her), for at least this episode, which was a good ending, but still, why have beauty be the focus of a child’s t.v program? It’s just too much, in this mom’s opinion.
QUICK FINAL POINT- (Oh, and I am aware of the ratings they give their shows for certain ages, but that does little, in all honesty, and the warning doesn’t matter, even if you are in the recommended age group, you still get your mind tainted, is what I’m trying to say here. It even bugs me to watch and I’m nearly 35, so…!)
Now, I’m REALLY signing off:) Have a good one.