Monday, January 27, 2014

Are they really just teens, tweens and young adults growing up or something else?

When child stars grow up and want to change their squeaky clean image in favor of a more grown up or an adult look or attitude who should be held accountable when they fail, struggle or show signs they need help?

They say they don’t want to be or are not role models, but when you are in the public eye and in an industry that calculates your every move both good and bad, you need someone to watch your back and help your transition to an adult. Amanda Bynes, Miley Cyrus; and the latest to be added to the list of rebels or just plain growing pained teens, Justin Beiber. But this is getting out of control! Justin was arrested this past week in Miami Beach for drag racing, and DUI.

Justin emerged on the scene at 15 and burst to stardom and the top of the charts breaking all the tweens and teen girls’ hearts along the way, now at 19 he is acting like a pseudo adult and getting arrested. Yes I understand that he is an adult, but with the money and power that he has from such a young age who was there or is there to tell him right from wrong, guide him through the bumps along the way to being an adult. At 19 he has been arrested, let me repeat that arrested at 19 for DUI when the legal drinking age in Florida is 21. Yes all teens go through a rebellious stage, but not all teens are that wealthy and are on the cover of every teen magazine and a role model. Justin isn't the first that this has happened to and he won’t be the last.

Miley was on the top of all the tabloids not too long ago and making headlines of her own, no, not for getting arrested, but bad or rather questionable choices. She has said she is an adult and didn't want to be like her Hannah Montana persona from Disney, but while she is grown or growing up, not all of her fans have, and still look up to her. She could care less, naked videos, pot smoking, barely there outfits and outrageous tweets and interviews. I do understand that she is also just growing up and rebelling, but when you are a tween, teen or young adult in the public eye with unlimited money and a sense of entitlement someone needs to guide you and help you navigate the choppy waters.

Most of the times the parents are the ones pushing, promoting, and keeping you in the public eye, or even worse living vicariously through their children as was the case with Lindsay Lohan and her mom Dina. Party hopping, drinking and over all debauchery with your underage child is not a way to bond, but a way to get into rehab, and then kill her career. So clearly the parents can’t help guide these kids though the trials and tribulations of growing up.

Agents and managers I suppose are just as bad, but they should step in and say something. If they don’t they will be dealing with damage control down the road in the case of Justin Beiber and his DUI, the tabloids were the ones to contact his people as to his arrest!

There needs to be mentors or advocates to act on behalf of the kids or be a liaison to guide them. Yes they should all know right from wrong, but the problem is no one is telling them they are wrong. Their morals and values are skewed, their heads are puffed up and filled with their sense of entitlement and just keep spending money or trying to buy what they want or buy their way out of messes or into trouble. The industry needs to wake up and doing something about it. Child stars that have overcome these growing pains and moved successfully into adulthood either unscathed or made it through those teen angst years should step up and maybe guide these up and comers. Something has got to be done, the big wigs can’t keep looking the other way as if it’s not happening or things aren't going horribly wrong.

Not all child stars turn out bad, or went bad in the public eye. Alyssa Milano has blossomed and is still acting. Neil Patrick Harris is amazing and I don’t ever remember seeing his name in any of the tabloids as he was growing up. The guys for New Kids On The Block and N’Sync made headlines for breaking girls hearts, but nothing with drugs, strippers or DUI and they are still around and relevant and making music. They all grew up in the public eye. Clearly the parents and support systems were in place when these success stories were growing up.

It all comes back to a support system. If these child stars, teens or young adults; whatever we are calling them these days,  do not have anyone worthy watching their backs or guiding them, they will be destined to be bad choices and horrible mistakes that can cost them their careers or worse their lives. 

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