Sweet 16 vs. Sexy 16
By Briana, age 17, New York
How many of you read Cosmopolitan? Walking down the hallways of your school has anyone ever yelled, "Hey Sexy!"? What about the prom dresses this year? I mean, have you seen half of them? One website I came across even had "The Top 27 Slutty Prom Dresses".
Now, on another point, how many of you celebrated a 'Sweet 16' or 'Quinceanera'? Do you have an 'innocent' Myspace page, or still love to watch movies with you little brother or sister?
The problem is, too many girls are getting the age "Sweet 16" mixed up with the age "Trashy 26". Many girls are confused with what they're reading in the Cosmopolitan magazines stolen from their mother's bookshelves. The movie 13 Going on 30 shows just what many teenage girls are going through. In the movie, even though they show the bad points of being older, they also show the glamorous parts too.
I was extremely disappointed to look at the new issue of Cosmo. and see that Ashley Tisdale was on the cover, with the subtitle 'Blows Off Her Good-Girl Image'. I understand that she is 20-something years old now, but she has to realize that most of the women who read Cosmo don't even know who she is. She needs to know that many of her fans are between the ages of 9 and 14.
When young girls see this kind of behavior from their idols, they wonder why can't they be sexy too? I walk through my high school and see boys who don't look to be much over 13 slapping girls on the butt ... seriously. Most of these girls don't even get mad, just laugh. They like the attention, but don't realize that it's going to cause many other people to talk about them in a negative way.
I was also upset to find that one of my little sister's friends became pregnant this past month. It happens - girls become pregnant at 17 or 18 all the time, right? My sister is in 7th grade, and the friend openly told everyone she "didn't really know it could happen from what she did."
There is so much pressure from girls to be skinny, pretty, and loved from all of the tabloids, why don't we add 'sexy' into the mix? Many young teen girls are going from movie and game nights with their parents on Thursdays to body glitter and house parties on Fridays. Even the magazines that feature articles for younger viewers show too much skin or have 'how to kiss' directions. One article I was reading several months ago had directions on how to put on a form of birth control! I'm sorry, but when I think Teen People, I think 13 and up as being a teen.
My advice: Focus on the fun parts of life; don't let the tabloids get to you. Stay true to your age, because by doing that, in the long run, you will stay true to yourself also.