Friday, March 23, 2012

Undergrad Girl Turned Stripper - A Case of Misguided Parenting

A sensational piece of news has been circulating on the internet about a 22 undergrad Singaporean girl who became an online stipper to satiate her appetite for attention.
S'porean girl becomes online stripper, 19 Mar 2012

...She had begun uploading ordinary photos of herself onto the Internet and to her surprise, garnered many praises for her good looks.

Netizens would leave messages for her, like, "You're so pretty, you must have a great figure too. Why not show it off?"

With the encouragement, she began to get bolder and started sharing sexy and revealing photos of herself.

Addicted to the praises and the attention, she took it a step further and began to strip and upload pornographic videos of herself on the internet.

The girl's videos were 'accidentally' discovered by her brother who then notified her parents. The girl's shocked parents then sent her for counselling "in hopes of helping her". The problem, it seems, was that the girl had exposed herself because she had been craving for attention, which she had been denied when she was growing up. Apparently, she had always done well academically and in her co-curricular activities, but had "never been praised by her parents, not once in her life".

How ironic it is that when parents discover some shocking behaviour in their children that they immediately assume that the child is the one who needs counselling. Yet it is clear in this case that the parents of this girl are the ones primarily responsible for having denied this girl her emotional needs for 20 years, and that they are the ones who need counselling.

This sort of warped parenting is not uncommon in Singapore. Singaporean parents are notorious for packing their kids' lives with tuition, enrichment and homework designed to turn their children into A- grade machines from a very early age. Emotional approval is often withheld, instead discipline - both verbal and physical - is harshly implemented to get children to fall in line with the behaviours necessary to 'succeed' in today's Market Society. The children's basic emotional needs for attention, affection and dignity are denied in pursuit of materialism and social status.

Pre-schooling is necessary for kids to have an 'edge' in primary school. Top primary school grades are necessary so that the kids can get into a top secondary school. Top secondary school grades are necessary so that kids can get into a top university. Getting into a top university is necessary so that they can get a top high-paying job. A top high-paying job is necessary so that they can get the money to buy that multi-million dollar property and that luxury car. That property and that car is necessary so that they can get the respect, approval, status and envy from members of society.

But of course this is all an illusion. Children's emotional needs for respect, dignity and affection are never going to be satiated by material possessions, social titles or status symbols. Instead, chasing after these things denies children their true emotional needs and risks them becoming vapid, empty souls prone to anxiety, depression and sociopathy. And where genuine emotional needs are not met in a healthy manner, they will be eventually be satiated through less healthy ways.

What parents need to do is to love their children for who they are and help them discover and develop their inborn talents, rather than forcing them to fit into an artificial mold created by the materialist and status conscious desires of society.

Although I do not condone the girl's actions, they really are not that surprising after having found out when she went through as a kid. Her story is a classic example of parenting gone wrong and the potential consequences of such parenting mistakes. Her parents need some serious counselling and behaviour reform - and hopefully other parents can learn from their mistakes.

1 comment:

Amused said...

I don't agree with your assessment. Many kids in other countries are involved in "sexting" their naked bodies to friends which ended up on the Internet.

Naturally, parents are blamed for the mischief of their children but kids are influenced by many factors! Of course it is not an excuse for a parent to ignore or tolerate harmful behavior in children but that is a different matter.