Too much too young: how do we raise happy, healthy resilient children in a sex saturated world?
Have you noticed your children seem to be growing up too fast, more conscious than ever about their looks and bodies?That they are even more anxious and worried about their physical appearance? That they are being exposed to sexualised images and messages which make them feel pressured to look thin and sexy? And that their childhoods are increasingly commercialised?
Children and young people are bombarded with hyper-sexualised messages and images in media, billboards, toys, games,
magazines and clothing. Many authorities believe this exposure is contributing to an environment which is increasingly harmful to our kids, by presenting their value in terms of their looks and sexual attractiveness. Negative physical and mental health outcomes include anxiety, depression, self-harm, eating disorders, low self-esteem and poor academic performance.
Drawing from current research on the subject, Melinda will take us on a ‘pop culture’ tour, exploring with us how the proliferation of sexual imagery is contributing to a distorted view of bodies, relationships and sexuality in young people, having a negative impact on their physical, emotional and social development and hampering our ability to help raise happy, healthy, resilient kids.
Melinda Tankard Reist will be helping us think through what we can do as parents and as a community, to address this.