Gransnet forums


9 year old wearing make-up!

(51 Posts)
Yummygran Mon 04-Mar-13 09:49:39

I'm sure there will have been many previous discussions on this subject but this morning I am so incensed!!....I have just seen photos of my nine year old GD posted on facebook taken over the weekend on a day out with her mother, wearing eye-liner; mascara; eye shadow; blusher and lipstick!!! I can't tell you how angry, sad and worried I am for her. I remember hearing her mother sayting that she wanted to be best friends with her daugther as she grew up, and as far as I can see she is encouraging her to grow up far too early. Am I being old fashioned to think that a nine year old is still a child?!

My son and his partner are no longer together, both have gone on to have new partners and a son each. I spoke to my DS about it, saying how 'unimpressed' I was. He said the same but says he feels powerless to do anything. He has a difficult relationship with his ex, and often has to tread on egg-shells to keep the peace otherwise she stops him seeing his daugther.

My ex DIL seems oblivioius to the dangers for young girls, encouraging her in this way one minute, then saying how she feels she's growing up too fast the next! My GD knows that Grandma 'doesn't like make-up' and doesn't wear it when she is with her father. But there are more and more photos of her posing provocatively and it scares me!

JustMe Mon 04-Mar-13 09:59:47

That would scare me too. The natural beauty of a 9yo is a wonder to behold and doesn't need to be covered in anything. And where does it stop.. that's the problem. A 9yr old should be playing imaginary games and be a child (which they are.) Also being 'best friends' with daughters just doesn't work, you have to be a parent, or the teenage years will be a nightmare....

Elegran Mon 04-Mar-13 10:15:53

Those photographs could be copied and used by the most unsavoury people. Can that be pointed out to her? And if she looks 9 going on 19 then there are those who will assume that her life-style is the same . . .

Whenever I see children in adult makeup I remember the little beauty queen in the states, who was found violated and murdered.

Yummygran Mon 04-Mar-13 10:44:02

I agree Justme, I dread her teenage years. Her mother has no contorl, my son is strict, and she respects him and love him to bits, but she has no respect for her mother.

Yes Elegran, I worry about who is looking at her photos. I have pointed out the dangers to both her mother and my DS. I have just studied the commercial sex industry for my degree and am only too aware of potential dangers, but my ex DIL thinks I am a dinosaur. Her mother, in turn, allowed her and her sisters to wear make-up, dress provocatively etc, when they were growing up so I guess she doesn't see it as a problem.

FlicketyB Mon 04-Mar-13 10:47:11

An adult cannot be 'best friends' with a child, even their own child. Do they really think that that child is going to confide in them the way that child will with friends their own age? Mothers that do this are generally on an ego trip to convince themsleves that they are still young and with it or deeply insecure.

To let a child as young as nine wear make-up and dress in clothes more suitable for a teenager sexualises them and passes the wrong messages to other adults round them, even when the clothes are not themselves overtly sexual in style. I would be very worried if my DDiL was doing anything like this with DGD

absent Mon 04-Mar-13 10:49:55

Playing with make up, like walking about in mummy's high-heeled shoes, is something most children, including quite a few boys in my experience, like to do from time to time. A nine-year-old wearing make-up, even for a special occasion, is surely a step too far.

As for a mother being best friends with her children – well that's just totally delusional. What the children need is a mummy; they'll find their own best friends.

Stansgran Mon 04-Mar-13 11:49:03

Times 2 today there is an article about teen sex which really depressed me. Sexualising girls by making them my best friend with makeup etc is IMO not very far from the mother of the teenage son who came home to find them in bed. He was 14she 15 .all she said was please don't have sex.

kittylester Mon 04-Mar-13 12:01:53

Absent you've said it for me. It's fun when DGD aged four and a half asks for some nail varnish or lipstick, trying to emulate her mother, but that's all it is and she soon forgets about it.

gillybob Mon 04-Mar-13 12:11:57

My 2 grandaughters love to play dress up with "clippy cloppy" shoes and make up too. They especially love lip gloss. Playing make-up is fine and is part of growing up, however actually wearing it outside is another thing entirely and really not very nice.

harrigran Mon 04-Mar-13 12:33:08

I have seen this too close to home for comfort. Only child, treated like a princess every whim pandered to. Wore make up from nine years, clothes way too old for her when she was twelve, see through tops and so on. Allowed to go clubbing long before she should legally and the inevitable happened when she was still underage. All could have been prevented by the girl's mother acting like her mother instead of trying to be her best friend and telling her no at times. When the girl was sixteen she was told she was no longer her parent's responsiblity and she was given the wherewithal to live in a house with the child.
GDs dress up too but as fairies, ballet dancers and witches and do not make up on and definitely no nail varnish.

gillybob Mon 04-Mar-13 12:39:10

My 2 GD's adore nail varnish the brighter the colour the better. My little GS (3) feels left out if he doesn't have some bright pink on his toes too ! smile

Mishap Mon 04-Mar-13 12:53:28

Apart from the inadvisability of putting these pics on the net, it is such a shame that such a wee lass should be dolled up like this - she should be racing about on her bike or whatever and not worrying about how she looks - crazy! Little girls all play around with makeup and nail varnish, so hopefully this was just a jokey pic of her playing - let's hope so!

Yummygran Mon 04-Mar-13 13:26:31

You've all said exactly what I am is so sad her childhood is taken up with worrying about what she looks like, clothes, makeup etc. Her mother bought her a phone for christmas...when she should be playing with dolls! It scares me where this is going to end. I think my son should put his foot down and do something, but he is afraid my GD won't want to be with him, and then he will have even less control!

annodomini Mon 04-Mar-13 13:30:44

Makeover parties are the fashion for pre-teen girls' birthdays. I know my GD (10) has been to at least one. I also know someone who runs such parties. Admittedly it's akin to dressing up, but surely it does give some of the children the wrong idea. My GD is happier with her head in a book but a family friend told her that if she stopped biting her nails she would take her to a nail bar for a manicure which I thought was fair enough as a treat.

Yummygran Mon 04-Mar-13 13:39:23

Why would pre-teen girls want a makeover?! I'm not a prude, certainly don't think myself as old fashioned, but think that childhood should be exactly that....with the emphasis on 'child', they'll be adults soon enough, with the worries and troubles that can bring.

FlicketyB Mon 04-Mar-13 14:50:37

5 year old DGD makes a beeline for my shoes as soon as I arrive as, unlike DDiL and her mothe,r I wear heels, and what she calls 'pretty' shoes and she loves to try them on and walk round the room in them and play games that require pretty shoes. It is fun and a game. She too likes wearing nail varnish but as everyone is saying there is an enormous gulf between that and going out dressed and made up like an adult. I wonder if the child herself really enjoys it?

Yummygran Mon 04-Mar-13 15:40:26

She loves to dress up to go out, I have often noticed that she has a bit of blusher on when I've popped around to see her. When it was coming up to her 9th birthday I asked her what she wanted, quick as a flash she said 'make-up' and then realised who she was talking too lol. Later she told her step-Mum that I had asked her and she said, 'I forgot and asked Grandma for make-up'. Needless to say Grandma didn't buy make-up, but gave her art/craft materials and took her to the Natural History Musuem for the day.

I remember when she was three years old her Mother brought her to stay with me and she had nail polish on.(Bright red nails not play varnish). When I showed surprise my DIL told me my GD had put it on herself!!! Obviously she couldn't have done at three. I told her Mother that I would be taking it off and I did just that. My GD didn't want me to and cried, so I told her that feeding ponies (which she loved doing) wasn't allowed if you were wearing nail polish and she was quite happy to have it removed!

Eloethan Mon 04-Mar-13 18:49:11

I would be unhappy about this too, but, as the mother is encouraging it, it's difficult to know what you can do without causing a row. Do you think the mother has thought about the possible dangers of putting such photos on Facebook? Is there anyone else close, apart from your son, who can perhaps drop a few hints - maybe casually commenting on numerous stories in the media re children growing up too fast or the dangers of Facebook?

I think it was good that you made a gift of arts materials and a day out, opening up other areas of interest. As a supportive and loving grandma, who listens and shows an interest in her life, you are doing the most valuable thing you can do.

Deedaa Mon 04-Mar-13 21:51:10

I can only second what everyone else has said. Of course we all dressed up in our mother's clothes and played with makeup, but it was just playing! No one would ever have suggested wearing it outside.As for putting photo's on Facebook, it's wrong on so many levels and the best friends idea never works. If you are lucky you can end up as adult best friends, but you have to go through the whole mother and child bit first.

BAnanas Tue 05-Mar-13 15:13:25

Yummygran you are me a few years down the line. My granddaughter has just turned three. I am the paternal grandmother and as such feel I have far less influence than the other side. My son and his girlfriend split just under a year ago, but he does make every effort to see a lot of his daughter and play a big part in her life.

I could have wept when my granddaughter was a mere 6 months old and her mother and maternal grandmother had her ears pierced, my son wasn't consulted about this it was presented to him as a fait accompli, I did post about this before on a forum specifically about babies and little girls with pierced ears. It's really hard when you know that the mother of your child sees things in a completely different way to you, I do put some of it down to a generational thing. I also hate the way people plaster their children all over Facebook. I think it's wrong for a multitude of reasons, I think it should be the child's right to remain anonymous until old enough to make an informed choice to post their own photos. I don't think anyone ever considers that.

My granddaughter often has painted nails, that doesn't concern me too much, I know little girls often ask to have this done. I did hate the way she swivels her hips to a song that goes "I'm sexy and I know it" my husband and I told her she isn't sexy because she's a little girl. She has stopped doing this, with us at least. There are a multitude of other things that drive me nuts, inappropriate stupid poorly fitting shoes because of what they look like. I buy her three good pairs of Clarke shoes a year because I think it's important to have her foot properly measured but her mother has a compulsion to match everything and often we pick her up and we get to the park to find the shoes she has on are completely inappropriate for jumping, climbing and running about. I always keep welly boots and my house for her so we don't have to worry about her feet getting muddy and wet and she is often happiest in situations where she can jump in puddles and run through leaves.

Another annoying thing is that my granddaughter instinctively does a lot of the right things, she is happy to walk, hates being in a buggy and will walk a hell of a long way, seemingly without getting tired. I don't think she gets enough exercise too long in front of the t.v. at both her mother's and other grandparents' house. Her favourite food is broccoli, baked fish and mashed potato she loves it she always asks us for it for dinner when she comes to us once a week. Just lately she asked me why couldn't I give her Coke and crisps because that's what her other grandmother gives her, who just so happens to be really fat. I did tell that fizzy drinks are full of sugar and crisps are full of fat and neither are good for her, I don't care if she repeats that back. I think it's awful giving a child of three rubbish like this, we all know they will discover junk food sooner or later but why offer it to them, and at such an early age it's just encouraging bad eating habits.

I'm having her on Thursday and we are going to see a production of the Gruffalo, one of her favourite stories at a local theatre. Childhood is very brief and to be enjoyed, without trying to turn little girls into pre pubescent adolescents before their time.

soop Tue 05-Mar-13 15:51:36

BAnanas Your final sentence speaks volumes. Well said. smile

Cagsy Tue 05-Mar-13 16:13:20

Oh I do feel for you Yummygran and others in your situation, I've got 3 GS and my first GD is on the way in about 5 weeks. My almost DiL is a lovely young woman and I know she feels the sort of behavious outlined is totally unacceptable while they're so young and her & my DS have a strong relationship. I do think when you're the paternal grandmother you have less influence and even less if they split up.
My 2 oldest GS are to my DD and whilst I would be very careful about offering advice unless asked for I do feel a different relationship, naturally.
It's dreadful that our society sexualises girls & young women in this way & it really is up to other women, especially mothers of girls to stop it dead and protect their daughter's childhood

Yummygran Tue 05-Mar-13 16:15:31

BAnanas as soop said you are so right, they grow up so very fast, and even faster when they don't have a proper childhood. My son's ex has dressed my GD inappropriately all her young life (in my opinion) and I have kept clothes at my house for her to change into to go out and play etc. She was taken to have her ears pierced at 3, without my son's knowledge, and was in agony because she wouldn't let anyone cleanse her ears, so much so she had a bad infection. Her mother agreed it was too young and let them close up, but I notice she's had them done again, but thankfully she understand how to look after them herself.

She is allowed to spend far too much time in front of the TV, was given a laptop for her 9th birthday and a mobile phone for Christmas.....all without my son's knowledge. What is there left for her to have! She has never played with dolls, in fact hardly ever played with appropriate age toys at all. She has grown up thinking she has a right to all of this adult technology and it worries me what is going to happen over the next years as she approaches puberty and adolescence!

BAnanas Tue 05-Mar-13 17:40:41

Thank you Soop. Yummygran, everything you say resonates with me, I think you are possibly further down the road with what I think may be coming my way.

My son moved in with our granddaughter's mother after knowing each other for only a couple of months, we advised against it, but at that time he wouldn't listen. He did tell me not to worry as granddaughter's mother had an implant in. Within a few months of them moving in together she had the implant taken out and was pregnant, she gave birth a few days after her 19th birthday. I'm still not sure to this day whether this was a joint decision, my son is still very evasive about it, he knew at the time we were devastated.

My son worked long hours at that time and this proved to be one of the many things they argued frequently about and then to cap it all his partner had a brief affair, mainly because she felt his work took him out of the home for too many hours and he wasn't around enough. She is very immature. This was just after gd's second birthday. She begged him to come back but he doesn't trust her enough to do that and she also tries to control how he spends his time. However, he still sees a lot of her because he likes to spend as much time as possible with their daughter and he is the only one who will read to her, this is something her mother wont do.

One of the multitude of problems they had was the other grandmother who has muscled in and tried to take over the parenting of gd. Her daughter is happy to let her do this as it gives her masses of free time, she doesn't actually enjoy the humdrum day to day routine of being a mother there's a surprise! Happily at the moment this works in our favour too as she is frequently looking to palm gd off and we get to see her frequently.

My son can't stand the other grandmother, he feels usurped by her she is a sharp elbowed domineering person and thinks she is an authority in bringing up children. In my opinion some of the advice she has given out has been positively damaging, for instance she told her daughter that she had put ground up rusk in her children's bottles at 6 weeks and she suggested that she should also do this. When I found out I told her that she could be damaging the baby it had an immature gut at six weeks and should only have milk, solids should not be introduced even in a limited way and if she didn't believe me then seek the advice of health visitor or clinic. I know that her mother is the primary influence and as such gets far more say than I have, which would be fine if she gave out the right sort of advice. Gd did go on to have some stomach problems I don't know whether they were related to this stupidity. My gd's mother, her sister and her mother all smoke and although they do it outside when they are around gd I have told my son that smoke will permeate their clothes and hair and could still have a damaging affect on her as gd has quite bad asthma at times. My son who developed asthma as an adult gave up smoking a few years ago and also hates him and our gc being around smokers. I have now found out that they give her crisps and fizzy drinks, so annoying because she was a child who never asked for snacks between meals and they are now creating a desire for something she never asked for. Other gm and sister both very overweight. Then of course there are the stupid earings and some tacky gold chain bracelet that she has to wear, why they think a little girl needs these adornments I'll never know. Sorry to go on and on but once I've started it's hard to stop there's so much of it and as I said Yummygran your post really resonated with me.

maxgran Wed 06-Mar-13 11:07:34

I think its really sad when little girls wear make up.
My Granddaughter is 9 and she is a member of a dance academy. Of course, when they do stage shows she has to wear quite a lot of make up because of the stage lights etc, however, when my daughter asked me to take DG to a dance competition because she was busy, I was horrified when I picked her up to see she was plastered in make up.
My daughter said that all the other little girls wear it.

When we got to the competition venue - most of the other girls were NOT wearing make up - there were just a couple who looked as ridiculous as my DG.

Other Mums were looking and whispering and I don't blame them - I was embarrassed!
I told my daughter that if she wanted me to take DG again that she must not have make up on.

I was really annoyed when my daughter had DGs ears peirced at age 4 too !