'Toddlers & Tiaras' Mom Won't Let Daughter Play Outside for Fear Her Skin Will 'Darken' (VIDEO)

Say What!? 28

I've never seen an episode of Toddlers & Tiaras. The very concept of little girls strutting around in sexualized poses and outfits makes me shudder. The message that is being hammered into their young, impressionable brains -- that the way to get attention and rewards is to act like a little sexpot -- is disturbing. Now after hearing about this latest episode, I'm more convinced than ever that this show is truly harmful to young girls. One mother won't let her 3-year-old pageant daughter play outside because she doesn't want her to darken her skin tone. If this sounds outrageous to you, believe me, it's common.

On the show, 3-year-old Selena is described by her mom as having a "natural, golden skin tone." Apparently in order for her skin stay "golden" and not darker than that, Selena isn't allowed to play outside, even when she begs.

"She has to stay inside. She follows the proper protocol," said the mom. The little girl, of course, like any kid, wants to be outside in the fresh air and sun. "I really want to play outside. Like my brothers," the little girl lamented, to no avail.

So what lesson is mom passing along here? One, that skin tone matters. Two, that skin tone only matters for girls. Three, that skin tone -- or her looks or beauty, if you will -- is related to a lighter rather than darker skin tone. And four, that again, looks matter for girls, not boys.

How messed up is this? And yet it's common. A friend of mine, who is West Indian, gave birth to a little girl recently. Her mother, still in India, said this the second the child was born: "Does she have dark skin?" Yep, first thing out of her mouth. That's how important skin tone still is to some people.

Honestly, couldn't the mom put some SPF on this child and let her outside for an hour? Or better yet, not care about this stuff at all and send her a healthier message, like that playing outside is good and being athletic is a good, and being dark is damn fine too?

Do you think what this mom did was okay?


Image via TLC

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Lisa Gayle Bucket Johnson

I Have a gap in my front teeth and I always hated it.  One day I casually mentioned I wish I could get braces my daughter said, NOOOO!  So I asked her why?  Her responsed was "but Mom that is what makes you, you".  Wow the wisdom of children...  It never bothered me again.

tuffy... tuffymama

Gaps are good, Lisa Gayle! They usually indicate a jovial spirit and ambitious work ethic. My LO has one, and nobody else in the family on either side has ever had one. He's our little industrious comedian, too.

Has the mom in the story not heard of sunscreen? Or RICKETS? I hope to heaven she's giving the kid D3 and K2 supplements since she won't let the plump dumpling play outside in the sun. People are so backwards sometimes.

MomLi... MomLily67

This mother is nuts. Don't all the fair skined kids get spray tans to look darker?? Her daughter has georgeous skin tone!!!  I honestly think most of these pageant moms live thru their kids.

SuzyB... SuzyBarno

Um no! I'm shocked! That is horrible. Way to set your daughter up for a lack of self confidence!

the4m... the4mutts

This is abuse in my opinion. You can't keep your kid holed up inside 24/7. That's cruel

Mom2f... Mom2fourlove

So she will obviously load her kid up on junk (not trying to be rude but she is a little on the bigger side) but won't let her kid in the sun for fear of her getting darker???

Pinkmani Pinkmani

Typical talk for people of color... Typical to say that lighter skin-tones are better than darker skin-tones, because the lighter you are the closer you are to the supremacist - the white man. 

Deweymom Deweymom

I caught the end of this show...and that poor 3yo looked like she had a mustache up on stage. Poor makeup job? Too much chocolate? Who knows.

Kids NEED outdoor time. Period. And this child ate SOOO much candy...she could do with a few laps around the playground. Not being mean...kids need exercise too.

power... powertothekids

things like this is why i made my petition http://www.change.org/petitions/child-beauty-pageants-put-more-regulations-on-child-beauty-pageants

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