Why Taylor Swift is no role model for my daughters

Princess is 5-and-a-half and is suddenly “into” pop culture. Gone are the Barbie movies and You Tube videos about baking cupcakes. Welcome to the world of One Direction, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift. I shouldn’t be surprised, I was probably more or less the same age when I became infatuated with the likes of Boyzone, The BackStreet Boys, Westlife (you know, back when boy bands were real boy bands!). I’m just not ready to listen to my 5 year old and her friends singing loudly, “It’s all about the BASS ’bout the BASS no TROUBLE”

I wouldn’t ever have pegged myself as someone to veto music that my children like, and (for now) I’m not going to. However, there are some things that I don’t like about some pop stars. Perhaps it’s my feminist mother coming through, I’m not sure.

Here’s the thing about Taylor Swift.

She is, what, 25? And she is very well known for writing her own songs, and for dating a lot of guys. Now, once again, I’m not against that per say. I’m not afraid to admit to my children that, since I was 16, the longest I’ve been single is about three months. I’m ok with that, because I have never felt like I needed a boyfriend.

The thing that irks me about Taylor Swift, is the way she regards her boyfriends. Mostly, after they have broken up. One of her first songs to gain public attention was about a boy she had a crush on (she was 15-ish). The song is about this guy (who she names in the song) and his girlfriend. And how *she* would like to be his girlfriend. But she can’t be. Because he has one who he, it seems, is perfectly happy with.

I will never encourage my children (daughters and sons) to pursue someone who is currently in a relationship. You should never be the reason a couple break up. EVER. Yes, couples have problems. But I will tell my kids until I am blue in the face, steer well clear until the relationship is over. I mean, how did this guy’s girlfriend feel, when a song was written about how she shouldn’t be with her boyfriend?

Sigh.

And then Taylor Swift went on to publicly date star after star after star. Which is fine, she is young. But I do not like her need to sing about these men once the relationships turn sour. Because that is another major lesson I would absolutely love to push on to my children – do not be bitter when a relationship ends. Even if it ends in a messy heap of heartbreak, count your losses, cry about it and walk away with your head held high. For me, singing about things that went wrong in a relationship equates to spreading malicious rumours about them after the break up. Something that we discourage our kids from doing.

Now, I understand that she is a country singer first and foremost, and signing about their life woes is what country singers do, but considering her main fan base is pre-teen – teenage girls, I really hope she realises just how influential she is.

I have to say, at this point, that I do really like her song ‘Shake It Off’. I like that she clearly has no issue making fun of herself, and I give her full credit for her song writing abilities. But then I heard Blank Space.

Cause we’re young and we’re reckless
We’ll take this way too far
It’ll leave you breathless
Or with a nasty scar
Got a long list of ex-lovers
They’ll tell you I’m insane
But I got a blank space baby
And I’ll write your name

I don’t know about you, but this isn’t quite the role model I want my daughters looking up to.

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3 thoughts on “Why Taylor Swift is no role model for my daughters

  1. Haha I feel the same way about Blank Space. It reminds of some not very pleasant women I have come across in my time. The ones that go after all the wrong men and have secretive psychotic tendancies when it doesn’t work out the way that they want it too. Eek!

  2. I was recently dragged to a Taylor Swift concert (aged 28) and didn’t want to go as she seemed a bit bubble gum but did it so my friend wouldn’t be solo. The concert was as I had feared- filled with little 5-14 year old girls and their mothers. Taylor blew me away. Her music, her talent, her grace! I was overwhelmed with the positivity she radiated and it touched everyone in the audience including me. She talked for long periods of time about her experiences with bullying, striving for her goals, love, life, respect, kindness, self belief and everything in between. I left the concert with hope for all the young girls and women out there having such an awesome role model. She wasn’t onstage mileying it or trash talking exes, she was up there talking about real life experiences in a really honest and helpful way. I kind of wish I had a Taylor Swift growing up! I think you need to do some more research…..no one wants to be like the parents on footloose who banned music and dancing…or the parents who banned Elvis and rock & roll….

    • Oh, I don’t doubt for a moment that she is a wonderful performer and I’ve heard great things about her concerts, and about her as a person. I know that she does wonderful things for her fans, and there are definitely elements in her that make her a wonderful role model. I wouldn’t dream of forbidding my children from listening to any music. However, I do stand by my comments about the content of her music – of those songs, at least 🙂 Thanks for your comments!

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