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Age of Innocence by Sue Atkins

Sue Atkins asks whether we are rushing our children into growing up too soon


I see Katie Price’s eight-year-old daughter Princess was in the news about the amount of make-up her mum has let her wear. I was talking about it on BBC Radio Three Counties recently.

Apparently Katie dyes Junior’s hair and allows Princess to wear heavy make-up and false nails.

It’s very easy to celebrity bash and we can all bring up other people’s children but it is a fine balance between allowing our daughters to play around with make-up, our shoes and our perfume to over-sexualising a child too early.

I have a 21-year-old daughter so I know first hand about raising a daughter, and as a child I used to like walking about in my mum’s shoes for fun, but personally I’m not sure I’d have liked my eight-year-old daughter to be seen in public posing in such a provocative stance and wearing such heavy make-up.

I also remember dropping my daughter off at a party when she was eight and the little girl whose party it was, was wearing make-up and it made me feel uncomfortable.

I think there’s a big difference between having fun, dressing up and playing about with mum’s make-up bag and over-sexualising a child.

Children are beautiful, have naturally beautiful skin and hair and don’t need to be told the message too young that they have to look a certain way to be liked, accepted or glamorous.

Self-esteem, self-confidence and self-acceptance are taught by parents initially until a child believes they are beautiful, worthy and wonderful just the way they are.

Confidence and happiness is an inside job and perhaps Katie Price needs to ponder that.


Sue Atkins

Sue Atkins is a parenting expert, writer, speaker, broadcaster and coach, as well as the author of the Amazon best-selling books Parenting Made Easy – How to Raise Happy Children and Raising Happy Children for Dummies, the highly acclaimed Parenting Made Easy MP3s, CDs and workbooks and The Secrets To Well Behaved Kids. Twitter: @SueAtkins

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