Perplexed about Child Pageantry

Inspired by Unknown Mami’s post at Mamas Latinas (congrats on the new gig, amiga!), I wanted to write my feelings on children’s pageants. While I am the mother of two boys, I’m still a parent, and I cannot imagine dressing up my daughter in those outfits and parading them around like they are living dolls. The pictures in that slideshow really bother me: the over-the-top dresses, the fake nails, the huge wigs, wearing more make up than you find in a department store, and even the chest padding. It’s a form of child abuse in my book. Kids grow way too fast these days, and the way these girls are dressed up and made up is worse than any adult pageantry I’ve seen.

That being said, I have nothing against child modeling, as long as it’s age appropriate. My friend’s daughter has been modeling since she was a few months old, and at the age of 2 has participated in two pageants thus far. I’m proud of her for not overdoing it and allowing her little girl’s natural beauty to shine through. In her first pageant she won both Director’s choice and Glitz Supreme. While the pretty fluffy dresses are inevitable, there’s no need for all the other fluff. Isn’t she adorable?

(Photo: Rubio Photography via Lellany Ruiz)

My bottom line is, it’s okay to involve your daughters in modeling and pageantry, but it’s so very important to remember that they are children first. These first few years are so precious, don’t let them slip away by making them pretend they are older than they really are.

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