Want to know what tweens today want more than anything? To become a reality star. A shocking new UCLA study found that the top value for children aged 9 to 11 is fame. Other high scoring values on tween wishlists include: a big bank account, and having perfect abs. Values at the bottom of the list include kindness and hard–work.
Psychologists say this is a major red flag. And means that an entire generation of North American kids could grow up to be self-absorbed narcissists.
So, why are tweens hooked on fame? Experts say it’s all because of TV shows. Let me explain. Psychologists say that for generations, tweens took their life cues from popular TV shows of the time. For example, previous generations grew up watching family-oriented, feel-good shows like “I Love Lucy,” “The Brady Bunch,” and “Full House.” But today, the dominant theme on a lot of TV shows is a focus on young celebrities. Like “American Idol”, and “Hannah Montana.” So, experts say it’s natural that tweens are obsessed with becoming stars.
But lead researcher Dr. Patricia Greenfield warns that most tweens are unrealistic about what it takes to become famous. And could become distraught if they don’t make it. For example, most tweens think simply posting a YouTube video is enough to instantly turn them into a star.
Like overnight sensation 14-year-old Rebecca Black, whose YouTube video of her singing “Friday” went viral, scoring millions of hits. Leading to endorsement deals, and a starring role in a Katy Perry music video.
But experts warn that parents need to explain that becoming famous takes a lot of hard work. For example, to become a famous singer, they’ll need voice lessons, music lessons, not to mention, a day job to pay for all of those lessons.