The sexualization of young girls occurs when individuals or when a society explicitly or implicitly demonstrates that a girl's value comes only from her sexual appeal or behavior, to the exclusion of other characteristics, or when she is sexually objectified, or when sexuality is inappropriately imposed upon her. Girls are often pressured by society to be more sexually attractive to members of the opposite sex and to wear tighter clothing, post sexier images, act more feminine, and engage in inappropriate behaviors like watching porn or sexting. Boundaries are constantly being pushed by the media and by individuals. We see female celebrities wearing provocative clothing in music videos, on award shows, and on social media. Even if these women are strong role models, the way they dress, pose, and engage in sexually-charged conversations can be very impactful on girls.
Sexualization of Women and Girls | YWCA Metro Vancouver
That isn't something that children should ever have to contend with. But the popular culture seems increasingly accepting of the sexualization of children. The most common worries are that girls will learn to view themselves as sex objects, or that girls will develop anxieties when they fail to meet popular standards of beauty. Do media images of sexualized girls change the way we view children?
The Sexualization of Young Girls and Mental Health Problems
Turn on the TV, walk through the mall, or flip through social media and you will see the hypersexualized landscape that youth are growing up in. Sexualization permeates all levels of society and is linked to three of the most common mental health problems experienced by girls and women: low self-esteem, body dissatisfaction, eating disorders. Sexualization impairs the ability of women and men to establish healthy relationships and is correlated with increased societal tolerance for inequality, sexual harassment and violence against women.
Elise Holland does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment. Over the past decade, the sexualisation of children has become a fiercely debated topic around the globe, with national inquiries recently conducted in the United States , Australia , and the United Kingdom. In , UK chain store Tesco advertised a pole dancing kit in its toys and games section, labelled as suitable for children aged eleven years and up.