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Thoughts about teens, tweens, parenting and this adventure of living on Earth in the 21st century.

Annie Fox, M.Ed., is an internationally respected parenting expert, award-winning author, and a trusted online adviser for tweens and teens.

Guest Blogger: Little Girls/Big Drama

June 28, 2010

By Dalia

My guest blogger today is the founder of GenerationX Mom Blog where she’s created a forum for Gen X moms to freely opine about “…school issues, social issues, preschoolers, tweens, teens, the issues that affect our lives, and just about everything in between.”

Recently while chaperoning my 5th grade daughter’s school dance I endured quite an entertaining night.  My job was to guard the door to make sure no one tried to escape and to keep an eye on the bathrooms. I thought, This will be a boring night. Never did I imagine the drama I would see!

One of the other chaperones told me to give it about an hour and then the show will start.  She was right.  About an hour later, out came the girls.  I was a bit appalled at the way some of them were dressed.  Fifth grade girls with obvious makeup, somewhat revealing clothes and tight pants.  Some even wore high heels.

The drama started with girls heading to the bathroom.  Next, a girl in tears running to the bathroom.  Closely behind, two more girls running to her rescue.  A few minutes later another girl quickly running toward the door in tears with her dark black mascara running down her face.  This went on for about two hours.  These girls were upset that another friend was dancing with “her boyfriend” or flirting with “the boyfriend.” Are you serious?  These girls are in 5th grade.  They insisted they “needed air” and had to get outside.  A whole group of consoling, sobbing girls in the bathroom, whipping out their cell phones to inform another friend of the story.

Insane!  These girls are kids.  Why are they not having a great time instead of worrying about these things?  I cannot imagine what these girls will be like as they progress through middle school and high school, not to mention adulthood.  Let me add one more thing…not one boy passed in my direction at the dance.  They were all having a grand old time.

My daughter was not part of this hysteria.  She and her friends visited me a few times and noted too how crazy these other girls were being  It got me thinking, what was it that made these girls so dramatic and my daughter and her friends not?

After the dance I started taking more notice of the “drama” queens.  A large majority of them seemed to have moms or big sisters who tend to be a part of drama themselves.

Some people are very entertained by drama.  Some people create drama wherever they go.  The woman at the supermarket who makes a giant ruckus (loud enough for everyone to hear) because the checkout line is too long. The neighbor who yells loud enough for the whole street to hear when she is upset.

That night I realized my daughter was not raised this way.  She’s aware of the drama and sees it as “crazy.”  She realizes that this is not the way she wants to be.  So I continue to ask myself, Why? I have always pointed people like this out to her and explained (in an appropriate way): You don’t want to be this way. These people are not happy people and you want to be happy. I have also taught my daughter to stay out of the drama.  Don’t get involved.  Drama is addicting…and catchy.  Stay away.  You are better off.

What we teach our kids and the actions we show them have so much to do with how they grow up. Show them how we react in situations like this and more than likely they will follow suit.

Why do you think these girls are so caught up in drama at this age?

Filed under: Parenting — Tags: , , , — Annie @ 12:39 pm
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3 Comments »

  1. No idea, but I certainly wouldn’t want my (presently imaginary) daughter or any of my stepsons acting like this.

    Maybe it’s the family-injected enjoyment of drama plus the emulation of celebrity culture, so that they need to feel like they’re in a soap opera episode at every moment?

    Comment by Stepmum of the Year — June 28, 2010 @ 4:12 pm

  2. Hi Stepmum of the Year,

    There’s truth in what you say about the “emulation of celebrity culture.” Following the gossip tabloids and the celebrity “news” is a major obsession with many moms. We shouldn’t be surprised when 5th graders seem to be living out the fantasy that their every hiccup and teardrop must be documented and broadcast to the Known Universe. How out of whack it is to believe that “Everything I do and say and feel matters intensely to everyone I know.” Like OMG! ;O)

    Comment by Annie — June 28, 2010 @ 4:26 pm

  3. Televison. That sort of behavior is glamorized and made fun of on nearly every tween/teen/ and adult televison program. Television has become our moral compass and our ettiquite encyclopedia. Whu wouldn’t children act like that when everyone else around them seems to be acting that way? Certainly there are the select few who reject this behavior, but many people find this behavior amusing and cultivate it by buying their children the accessories needed to make it successful. There is no wonder there is an increase in bullying as those who reject the culture and those who don’t square off in our schools.
    It is my understanding from my limited psychology classes that teens often feel they live on a stage and it is part of normal development. Sadly, some adults never grow out of it and serve as poor examples for their children both in their actions and the entertainment they choose.
    Excellent post and Excellent blog. Kudos to your efforts.

    Comment by Beth — July 8, 2010 @ 8:08 pm

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