You know the skin crawling impact your body makes with nails on a chalk board? That’s the same feeling I get when I see today’s little girls distorted idea of female role models.
Society focuses so much on the body image influence that models, actresses and singers give our girls, but what about other influences? Why are we not concerned or focused on that?
Being famous isn’t the same as being a role model. My hope is that all women simply look at the truth, and ask these questions: How did these women become famous? How have they demonstrated providing value to the world through their platform? What was their intention by becoming famous? Was it to be a “role model” or for another reason? Do they participate in charitable and philanthropic work solely for the sake that their publicists told them to? Because of the tax breaks? Which messages are they sending out to the world through their platform knowing that they are influencing a demographic? Which image are they portraying?
There’s no business like “show business.”
The biggest part of my frustration is that the girls and women who are glorifying these famous “role models” don’t realize their own power. They are likely setting better examples in the world than the women they are admiring and they hold so much power and influence themselves. When did “famous” become “powerful?” and when did being “powerful” become a pipe dream for us “simple civilians”?
I look at my nieces, one is 7 and the other is 9. My 7 year old niece grows her hair each year and donates it for wigs for children suffering with cancer. My 9 year old niece spearheaded a children’s hospital fundraiser through her elementary school raising hundreds of dollars. These are my wonder women. They get it, they understand the intention of what they are doing and the value it can provide. They aren’t famous, but they are powerful. More powerful than some of the women they listen to on the radio and watch on TV.
I spoke to my grandmother (nonna) on the phone the other day, she asked how my pregnancy was going and how I was feeling. My response was “good, can’t complain, a little tired.” Then she began to tell me stories of her life as a young peasant girl in Southern Italy pregnant with her first child. She would carry buckets of water on her head up a hill to her home and was hoeing vegetables the day she gave birth. I immediately put my earlier response into perspective. I’M TIRED?
This is in my backyard but let’s look at worldwide. Women protesters in third world countries fighting for basic human rights. Women who fight for education for themselves and the generation of girls to follow. Women who are bravely suffering from sickness with hope in their hearts and only love to give. Women supporting a family on their own while balancing a job, making dinners, and helping with homework. These are just some to name a few.
We’ve got this girls! We have resources, platforms and opportunities that at one point would be unimaginable. Let’s use them wisely so the next generation of girls know their own power and they can spread these values and examples like wildfire.