My girlfriend called me up needing to vent. She’d just gotten off of the phone with her daughter’s Kindergarten teacher who had informed her that her little girl was sitting in class looking like she belonged on RuPaul’s Drag Race, with a fully beat face. When the teacher asked her where she got the makeup the little girl said her mom gave it to her, which was a lie. My friend rarely allowed her to play in her makeup. This was something completely different.
I got off the phone thinking about how times have surely changed. I didn’t start stealing my mom’s makeup until I was a freshman in high school. I remember plastering it on thick like paint during my last hour of class. One time I thought I looked so good that I decided to surprise my boyfriend by meeting him at the bus stop Downtown. As I anxiously waited for him to arrive, sun melting my face with each passing moment, I kept thinking of how happy he was going to be to see me. When his bus finally pulled up, we made eye contact through the window, and the next thing you know the bus was gone, and so was he. I had no idea what happened until he called me later that evening.
“Why’d you have on all that makeup?” he asked me, first thing. “You don’t need it.” I consider that day my makeup call.
But now this is happening in Kindergarten? What’s happening to kids today? Is childhood becoming extinct?
I have a Kindergarten daughter too and it seems like everyday we’re having a conversation about when she will be allowed to wear makeup and nail polish. I keep telling her that kids have perfect skin, perfect everything, so they don’t need it. But it’s hard for her to hear me when she sees me watching a video tutorial of Christina Millian’s 5 year-old-daughter beating her own face like a professional. Once my daughter said a classmate wanted to gift her with a tube of lipstick and I said, tell her, ‘no thanks.’ This was the same little girl that gave her a sex education in Pre-K when she told her that a boy licked her vagina. He did what?! I reported it to the teacher just in case it was true. It took some time for me to get over the fact that I wouldn’t be the first to have ‘The Talk’ with my girl. Then just last week, my neighbor’s 8 year-old-daughter went to her first school dance. School dance? It was during school hours, but still. She got all dolled up looking like she was going to the prom and I’m looking at the pics thinking what’s she gonna do next year? Get married? These kids are growing up so fast!
“Kids are growing up so fast!” I remember hearing my grandmother say when I was younger. It was the same thing echoed by my mom. The truth is, they’re right. With every passing generation kids keep growing up faster and faster, but life is moving faster. Chances are we won’t be gravitating back to the transistor radio as our main source of news and entertainment. Heck, even TV is about to be obsolete. Some moms like Kris Jenner choose to get ahead of it. I was reading that Kylie Jenner used to complain about being forced to get manicures as a kid, but today, who’s making millions off of nail polish and lipstick? Perhaps Christina Millian is grooming her daughter for the same thing? I hear singer Brandy’s daughter is mean with a tube of lipstick too. I think it’s important to remember, no matter how we view this early loss of innocence, that the majority of us turned out fine.