Category Archives: Childhood

My Mom was a Dance Mom before it was cool.

In light of yesterday’s post & last night being the season premire of Dance Mom season 2, I decided to do a throwback post…from my childhood…from the 90’s.

So, yes I took ballet & tap. I did the whole sequined, frilly outfits with too much make-up & big hair thing. My mom did the crazy dance mom, yelling & screaming thing. She even got my pictures taken in full costume before every recital. There were, of course, a few problems with all of this: I had the memory span of a goldfish (thus I never knew the routine), I was painfully shy, & I would have rather been playing in mud-puddles.

I would get up on stage & attempt to do the things that the other girls did…failing miserably. I just went along with it. I never really complained because I was a pretty chill kid. I also had an older cousin (that I aspired to be like) that had taken the same classes & went on to be in beauty pageants. I just thought that was where I was supposed to go. Who I was supposed to be.

Then came the day of the hula outfit. I was wearing only the bikini top & bottom with the little grass skirt & a flower in my hair. I was 4 years old. My tummy? Freezing. My hair? Big. In the way. I was pissed. I walk out on stage, can’t remember the routine, am humiliated, so I stand there crying my eyes out smearing my make-up everywhere while all the other little girls dance. WORST 4 MINUTES EVER.

The turning point of this story? Right as I walk off stage, I tell my mom that I don’t want to dance anymore. And that was that. I never attended another dance class in my life.

So, the question is, where do we draw the line? What is good parental encouragement verses borderline abuse? Does our society know the difference?

Happy debating!