Hello fellow readers and parents,
Tonight I want to bring up a subject that I’ve been wanting to write about for a very long time now. I’ve been putting it off though, out of fear that other people may argue with me or think I’m just being crazy. A disclaimer before you read this:
This is my own silly opinion and beliefs based on what I’ve been through in my life. I’m not in any way, shape or form blaming my parents or calling anyone else a “bad parent” for letting their children watch the Disney movie “The Little Mermaid”. I just personally do not want my daughter watching it for the following reasons below….
- The entire movie is pretty much based around looks. Throughout the whole movie, every character talks about how important looks are. At the beginning of the movie, Ariel falls in love with Prince Eric, because he’s handsome. Not because he’s kind, or has a great personality, or is super funny, NO! She basically sees him, thinks he’s hot and is obsessed with him from then on.
- She pursues him. From the first time she sees Eric, Ariel goes out of her way to see him again. She constantly thinks about him and soon her entire world starts to revolve around him, meanwhile he’s going about his life not even aware that she exist.
- She completely disobeys her father, to “follow her heart”. In the movie, they make her father look like a monster for destroying her statue of Prince Eric and telling her not to go up to the surface, when really he’s just trying to be a good dad and protect her.
- Everything goes her way and she ends up marrying him and living Happily ever after, which is extremely unrealistic.
Ok, you may be sitting there thinking to yourself that I’m being way too harsh and judgemental. Afterall it is a Disney movie and everyone is supposed to live happily ever after by the end. I will even admit that I loved this movie as a little kid. In fact, it was one of my all time favorite Disney movies right up there with “Beauty and The Beast” and “Aladdin”. However, later on in life it got me into trouble.
I remember at a very young age, having crushes on boys. I’m not sure if I was just born with that type of personality or it was a learned behavior from watching “The Little Mermaid”, but now looking back on it, there are a lot of similarities between how Ariel acted in the movie and how I acted in real life.
I started chasing after boys that I liked and of course they never liked me back because after many frustrating years I learned that if you really like someone, you have to play it cool. Chasing after them is the worst thing you can do if you want them to like you back.
I just feel like it sends the wrong messages to young girls. It tells them that it’s more important to look good then to have a good personality. It teaches them that it’s ok to disobey your parents for love. It gives false hope that everything will work out, when life doesn’t really work that way.
When I was a teenager, I was also really depressed because I didn’t think I was a “pretty girl”. Being a teenage girl is hard! And it sucks! It’s around that time that you really start to be concerned with the way you look. You compare yourself to other girls who you think look pretty and if you don’t look exactly like them, suddenly you assume you must be ugly. It doesn’t help that you grew up watching Disney movies where every “beautiful princess” had a tiny nose and perfect hair, when you have a bigger nose and fizzy hair.
I just remember being really unhappy as a teenager, partly because I didn’t feel good about myself and partly because I got my heart broken a lot.
As a parent, I never want my daughter to ever feel that way. I pray for her every night. I mostly pray for her to be happy and to live a very happy life. That’s my biggest wish for her and I hope it comes true.
I wish Disney would have followed the actual Little Mermaid story by Hans Christian Andersen. In the real story, the prince never sees her as a love interest. He sees her as more of a pet. At the end, the prince ends up marrying someone else despite everything that the little mermaid sacrificed to be with him. She sacrificed a lot more in the book than in the Disney fairytale version. In the book instead of just taking away her voice, the sea witch cuts off her tongue, leaving her mute forever. She also tells her that in exchange for legs she will also have to suffer a great deal of pain with every step she takes. In the end she doesn’t get what she wants, or lives happily ever after. The movie is cute and has some really catchy songs, but I find the book so much more interesting and relatable.
I want my daughter to grow up strong. I want her to know that she doesn’t need a guy to make her feel special. She is already special and wonderful just the way she is. I think we will just stick to movies like “Frozen” and “Brave”.