How I miss Thomas the Train.I never imagined typing those words.
To quote my older son: “I’m excessed with Disney princesses.”
Truer words, son. Truer words.
I loathe those princesses.
To clarify: I’m totally fine with the veritable pu-pu platter of princess dolls he received for his birthday.
What drives me ape-shit crazy is the inane conversations about dresses and hair accompanying this excession.
The princessification of our lives began with those damn YouTube videos featuring grown-ass women playing with princess “magic clips”. Seriously: they manipulate impressionable minds by opening toys shipped direct from Mattel and make videos. They’re the “Saturday morning cartoon ads” of the 2010’s. (Notice the above video has 84 million views. She must be loaded and I’m chiding her. Who’s the idiot?)
It’s free advertising for Disney and (apparently) these grown-ups gain self-respect based upon their “likes” and “views” playing with toys.
Worst of all, their dialogue consists of nothing more than:
“Look what a beautiful dress Cinderella is wearing.”
“Ooh, isn’t Anna wearing a beautiful dress?”
What this woman is doing merits a head exam. Regardless her uncreative, greedy reasons, my son desperately wants to watch these stupid-ass videos of Disney toys.
And he enacts the same conversations with his dolls. “Oh, Rapunzel, you have such a beautiful dress.” “Cinderella, you look beautiful wearing Elsa’s dress.”
And my son imitates it! These loathsome videos rob me of money and my son of imagination. There’s no story arc. There’s no hero journey, no problem-solving or growth.
And then I find myself sounding like an absurd knee-jerk liberal when I manipulate the conversations thusly:
Him: (as Rapunzel) “Hello, Cinderella. Do you like my very long hair?”
Me (as Cinderella), “Meh. It’s fine. But what’s cooler is your medical degree. I actually hurt my arm while I was out rock-climbing. Could you take a look at my arm and fix me? Then we can still go do our volunteer work after you fix it. I love helping others.”
I couldn’t help myself. Girls shouldn’t be content to just talk hair and dresses; nor should boys.
(I finally put the kai-bash on these videos when he stumbled on a video where two girls acted out a “mean girl” fight between Elsa and Anna dolls. My son later quoted them, verbatim, and I have taken YouTube off our iPads.)
And my son immediately made Rapunzel go to work fixing Cindy’s arm (for two minutes. Then it was back to hair.).
Hey, he was game to make it a game. But thusfar, he doesn’t proactively make a scenario. It’s still just dresses and hair.
Insert suicidal emoji, here.
Before my own kids, I heard other parents complain about Disney shackling girls with dreams of being saved by a prince and getting married. I thought my friends were ridiculous.
But this morning, my son asked, “Are you married yet? Like Rapunzel? When are you getting married?”
I had an OMG moment, realizing he’s put Disney values on me and applied them to his life.
One day, as he walked around speaking in 3rd person in the role of “Rapunzel” with three blankets tied to his head, I said, “Buddy? Should I just throw away all your other toys since you don’t play with them anymore?”
“Fine. Except my princesses. Because they’re beautiful.”
He’ll get over it…..my daughter was obsessed with Rainbow-Brite, Popples, trolls,
My Little Pony, etc. Unless you want to raise them in a cave, there’s no getting away
from it. In hopes of making her a well-rounded person I kept pushing new
ideas in her direction vis a vis carefully chosen books and other media. I have no shame admitting that I leaned heavily on the kids’ librarian to help me choose worthy books, including lots of non-fiction, with a goal toward maximum exposure to a wide variety of topics. You’ll find your own way of course; very smart move to control the youtube, etc. After all, that’s your job.
Legos. Make them a new (expensive!) obsession. 1st to make a castle for some princess. Then maybe something else will follow? Eventually?
Excellent idea. And with all the themes…yes my little guy is all about the legos when they’re for princesses. But he quickly starts building other stuff, too. So Lego’s are just awesome.
OH the joys of rampant materialism in an electronic communication age in a country driven by commercialism, consumerism, and the pursuit of the almighty dollar
seriously. it’s a dirty world, ain’t it?
This too shall pass.
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Those “adults” creep me out… and my kids are now obsessed with the vids of play dough. We set the timer for those….the voices alone make you nuts.
Seriously. I’m sure our parents had similar complaints…but the adults on the videos are just another level!
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I have a one year old and I do notice that a lot of Disney shows are now princess/damsel in distress-related now. I change the channel.
Oh, absolutely! Luckily, I think Disney’s become wise to this and aren’t so damsel-in-distress, any longer. Still, it’s deep in our culture that girls (women) need a man and need to be saved. (Insert eye roll, here.) Thanks for reading and commenting.
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