Young and not so innocent? Part 2

I was reading this article from the 30 July 2009 edition of  TODAY . The headline was From ‘compensated dating’ to micro-mini skirts, are teenagers getting too sexed up? Its by Tabitha Wang

My husband’s niece came over to stay for a bit. She is only 16, but she was so self-assured that we kept forgetting that she was just a kid.

Even more eye-opening were her clothes. In summer, Hong Kong can be hotter than Singapore, so she wore a see-through blouse over a bikini top. Doing the laundry, I found myself folding micro-minis no wider than my dishcloths and shorts so skimpy I thought they were underwear.

She made me feel so old. In fact, she made me feel like I’d turned into my mother. Half the time she was going out with us, I had to bite my lip to stop myself from saying: “You’re not going out in that!”
Not being a mother, much less one of a teenage girl, I have never paid attention to their type of clothes available in the shops. Then I went shopping with my niece and soon found out that for this age group, it is micro-mini shorts, micro-mini tops … In fact, micro-mini everything.

Call me a fuddy-duddy, but I don’t remember teenage girls being so sexed-up before – not just in their, dressing but their attitude. These days, they can’t seem to wait to be adults.

When local clothing chain Bauhaus was looking for models for its new line, more than 200 youngsters queued up in one of the hottest days of the year for a chance to win the HK$50,000 ($9,300) coupons. Some girls as young as 14 came in their school uniforms for the tryouts and said they were happy to pose in bikinis should the need arise.

At a recent book fair, the focus was not on the books, but on so-called pseudo-models, teenage girls with nothing to recommend themselves but an ample chest and a willingness to contort their bodies into suggestive poses to sell their picture books.

When I was 16 (and that was a long time ago), my friends and I were happy to be kids. Sure, we rebelled, but that just meant gelling our hair, putting on mascara and hanging out at shopping centres, thinking we were the epitome of cool.

We never even knew about the kind of stuff teens seem to get into these days. Our idea of naughty was giggling at diagrams of human reproductive organs in our biology book. The biggest scandal during our secondary school years was when a girl got pregnant and dropped out to get married. We talked about that for years,

Maybe we were nerds, but I don’t think any one of us got ticked off for shortening our uniform skirts or playing truant. It just wasn’t an option.

The teenaged girls these days seem to be into hard-core rebellion.

The hottest topic in town now is the 16-year-old girl who ended up killed. Her body was chopped into little pieces and either flushed down the toilet or put among pig bones in the market.

What was probably just as shocking as the crime was that her alleged killer had met the girl on a Hong Kong website specialising in “compensated dating”, a euphemism for prostitution among teenagers.

The trend started in Japan but it is popular now among Hong Kong teenage girls who offer sex for money. And these aren’t just school dropouts looking for a drug fix or something to feed or house themselves.

Some are students from reputable schools who see nothing wrong in selling their bodies so they can afford branded goods or an expensive holiday.

A teacher friend is thinking of giving up her job at a girls’ school. “My pupils are not interested in studying,” she complained. “I’ve tried everything but all they’re interested in is make-up, clothes and boys.”

Whatever happened to the innocence of youth? Maybe we were all too protected but that allowed us to enjoy our carefree school days a lot more without the problems of grown-up life intruding.

Why the desire to grow up before their time? Life is painful and complicated enough when you do grow up. So isn’t it better to have some innocent pleasures you can look back on when the going gets tough?

I agree with her. What happened to our innocence of  youth?.

Youths used to hang out and chill. Like go the arcades and movies. Yes, they push the boundaries by experimenting with drugs and ciggarettes. We all go through that stage. But going in to prositution is a step too far.

I’m all for punishing adults who have sex with minors. It used to be adults watching child porn, then having teachers having sex with their students. But its different now. We must accept that. Its the teenagers who go out and look for adults to sell their body for money. Can we blame the parents for that? Or the Govermnent for that matter? Or should minors be taught a lesson at the same time we punish the adults?.

I’m say to say this but just go down to Orchard Road and stand there for a moment. What do you see?. Girls with short skirts or pants, dyed hair, smoking. Guys even put on make up now. There is no more innocence in a child or a teen anymore.

What have our children become?.


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