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Getting my knickers in a twist about ‘that’ comment, the Royals and raising boys

Last week the American ‘journalist’ Lara Spencer kicked up a storm when she publicly mocked Prince George on national television for taking ballet classes.
The television presenter hooted with laughter on Good Morning America at the notion the young royal, according to his father, ‘absolutely loved ballet’ and said to Prince William: ‘I’ve got news for you, we’ll see how long that lasts’.
Now attempting to humiliate a six-year-old, regardless of his background, is pretty low but the meaning behind her comments was also incredibly damaging.
Her reaction upheld the view that boys dancing should be laughed at. Boys must only do what some perceive to be ‘suitable’ such as playing football and getting into fights, not involving themselves in creative arts.
These views that pigeon holes boys into types of acceptable activities serves only to shame our children.
As the mother of a boy, Spencers outburst infuriated me, it’s hard enough bringing up children to be well rounded individuals without them being exposed to their types of views.
So do tell me this Ms Spencer in the face of high male suicide figures (men are three times more likely to commit suicide than women) how do we  raise our boys to be happy, balanced individuals when we’re also telling them to only pursue the activities deemed acceptable by some.
We need our boys to grow up to be tolerant, confident, kind people able to negotiate the challenges of life.
We also want to nurture whatever talents they have, whether that be football, athletics, art, dance or anything else to provide them with a creative outlet, purpose, social skills and mental wellbeing.
The only redeeming feature of this whole episode was the power of the backlash received, not just from the dance community, but all areas of society.
This gives us all hope that these outdated attitudes are falling by the wayside. What followed was an awkward apology from her. She also had to interview three highly respected dancers who spoke of the humiliation they had faced because of their chosen career.
As I sat seething about this a friend of mine posted on Facebook a video of her son dancing, the beauty of it completely took my breath away.
Maybe if Spencer had seen something like this she would never had thought to verbalise her ridiculous views and we could all have gone about our business.
Please take a look at Jo Dearden dancing, it really is fabulous, you can see it here.

Jo Dearden

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