Growing Into Fame

Reaching fame at a young age and continuously growing up in the public interest can either reflect a negative or positive image for a child star in today’s society. In a celebrity obsessed culture, it is not unheard of to idolize a child star seeing as every move in their life is publicized for the world to see.

So often, a former innocent “Disney” icon turns heads with their newly sexualized image, or a previous starlet who is undoubtedly most famous for portraying a set of red headed twins goes to court once again to face the latest charges for her history with substance abuse.

Customarily, stars can be seen with their parents throughout this whole transition, from the good press to the bad press, from stars wanting to be mature and adult in their decisions, which in turns means being caught on TMZ for their latest adult act.

Of course, there is always news to be found about former child stars reaching a plateau in their career, rewind back to 2013 for Amanda Bynes, former child star of the popular Nickelodeon series, “All That” and her latest stretch in a mental institution due to exhaustion and a slew of other vague illnesses..  It seems it is all but expected that child stars that grew up in the public eye mature far too fast. But, ultimately the question always appears as to who is helping these stars make their transition into adult life. Is it the child themselves or the parent?

In most recent news, this year was the antics of former child star and singer Justin Bieber, splashing the covers of tabloids and making headlines as of late for his recent stints in jail for DUI charges. On official record, Bieber was charged with drunken driving, resisting arrest, and driving without a valid license.

Shortly after his arrest, Bieber was seen partying with his father, Jeremy Bieber. So the question can be asked: is this normal behavior?

A case could be made that parents of celebrities have often become too “friendly” and less admonishing when dealing with rules and consequences for their teen stars. Research suggests that children and adolescents from indulgent homes are more likely to be involved in problem behavior, and tend to “act out” in more aggressive ways. Due to lack of punishment, these children fear no consequence.

However, in that equal facet, research has also shown that these same children or adolescents achieve significant increases leading to higher self-esteem, better social skills, and lower levels of depression.

Psychology studies have provided information that there are three distinctive parenting styles, including authoritarian, authoritative, and permissive.  According to research conducted by Nancy Darling, authoritarian parents are described as demanding and directive. A parent who teaches this way relies heavily on obedience and adherence to the rules.

In contrast, authoritative parents are both demanding and responsive.  These parents monitor and impart clear standards and guidelines for their children to follow.

Lastly, there is this idea of indulgent parents. Indulgent parents are nontraditional and lenient, avoiding confrontation with their child and relying on the child’s own self-regulation.

In many ways parents are the child’s only advocator and role model of what’s right and wrong.  Nonetheless, regardless of whichever parenting style is employed on young celebrities today, the parents should serve as the role model to their children, so that the children can impart what they have learned onto their fans and audience.

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