Tuesday 28 April 2015

Did You Know Your 7 Year Old Daughter is Posting Selfies on Instagram? - Teabreak Tuesday

If we go back several generations, it was the norm to get your first part time job at 10, leave school at 15, fall in love and marry off at about 18 years old and live to about 60.
Skip forward a few generations to now and it's the norm to get your first part time job at 16, leave education at 22 and fall in love, marry off/start a family in your late 20's and live to about 85.

With life being extended, children have a chance to be children and enjoy childhood for longer, don't they?

So when I went to a girl's 8th birthday party recently I had a bit of an eye opener (my own children are 3 and 5) - there were two distinct groups, you had about two thirds in pretty pastel party dresses and sparkly shoes having fun with their friends and enjoying party food exactly as you'd expect for 7 and 8 year old girls but then there was that other third, a group of a few girls that literally left my jaw on the floor! I couldn't believe what I was seeing!

The 7 and 8 year olds who in my opinion seemed more like 14 year olds ... And looked it! They wore black high heels, cropped tops, leather jackets and stood around chewing gum, talking about which 1D they liked best, overly (I can't stress the overly bit enough) applying bright red lippy and alarmingly spending most of the party on their smart phones either taking selfies, using Instagram (seriously!) texting (goodness knows who) or randomly I spotted one just sat playing with the timer on her phone?! (Maybe giving the impression she was doing something "cooler"?) these girls demonstrated they were too old for party food by throwing biscuits across the table and one girl made a rather mean comment about the birthday girl while the others tittered .... nice!

After the party there were some gifts for party girl - lovely things like clip in hair plaits, dolls and craft kits but there was an awful lot of cards ... with cash - I couldn't help but feel that at 8 surely it's still more fun to open a gift than just collect all the money? And really is it that hard to find something in the shops your friends would like? 

Now I know I'm not "with the times" and I believe childhood should be embraced for as long as possible - makes sense given we live for longer! I also think that the age of consent should be raised to 18 but that's a whole other argument!

I was just absolutely gobsmacked by seeing 7 and 8 year old girls acting and looking like what I would guess as 14 year olds - having a daughter myself, that just scared me - I wonder how they have been allowed to get so teenage so soon?! 

I know everyone is entitled to their own opinion but does your 7 or 8 year old daughter really need those black high heeled shoes and cropped top outfit? does she need the brightest red lipstick? does she have to have a smart phone already? did you say she could use it during the party as much as she liked? are you really OK with your 7 year old daughter posting photos of herself in a crop top and pouting with her bright red lippy to a public instagram account? do you even know who she was constantly texting instead of joining in with the party games - after all you didn't stay at the party? 

Why don't you try harder at saying no, protecting your child and helping her to embrace her right to stay a child just that little bit longer - if at 7 she's already acting 14 - what's going to really happen to her at 14? 

I know I'm in no position to judge other parents and I really hate doing it but I have to say, I judge that first parent who irresponsibly bought their 7 year old daughter a smart phone and gave them complete free reign with it!

I'm pleased the birthday girl was still in the majority pretty party dress group and not looking and acting like she's an extra in the "mean girls" movie.

Maybe I baby my children too much but I do think as parents, surely we should be helping our children have a childhood?


  1. Oh my gosh that is shocking ! I totally agree children are grown up way to fast and they should be children for as long as possible. I have a 12 year old and I don't even buy her heels and crop tops so there is noway I would let a 7 year old dress like that. X

  2. That is shocking....My youngest is 7. Eight in August and I can't imagine her even having a phone, wearing heels and not liking party food...My 12 year old doesn't even behave like those girls do. What is the world coming to. Eesh!


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Emma x