Saturday, March 28, 2009
Do I Really Want My 11-Year-Old Daughter Singing the Lyrics to "If U Seek Amy" by Britney Spears?
I consider myself pretty open minded when it comes to music. I like to know what my kids are listening to, and if it's something questionable we can talk about it.
Last week, I heard the new Britney Spears song, If U Seek Amy, on the radio. Part of the lyrics were bleeped out, so I wondered what she was saying. In situations like this, I consult with my friend, Amanda, at work. Her daughter is a few years older, so she usually knows about things before I do. She explained that she was singing, "All the boys and girls are begging to if U seek Amy." I didn't get it. Why were the boys and girls begging her to seek someone named Amy? Amanda had to spell it out for me, literally. Oh... now I get it. Great. I knew it would only be a matter of days before my daughter would know all about this.
A few days later we're in the car when the song comes on. Her face lights up, "Oh, I like this song, it's by Britney Spears!" Okay, I thought, maybe she's just heard the song and has no idea what it's about. She then casually informed me that part of the song SOUNDS like she spelling a bad word, but she's really just saying, "If you seek Amy."
"Yeah, I know," I told her. I went on saying that I couldn't understand why Britney would sing a song about people wanting to do that to her. I tried to turn it into a teaching moment about values and respecting your body. She just looked at me like I was stupid. Finally, I looked at her and asked, "Do you even know what that word means?" "Kind of," she answered quietly. "It means having SEX!" I exclaimed.
The rest of the car ride was pretty quiet. Times have really changed. When I was her age, my dad made me throw away the 45 record I bought of "Bad Case of Loving You (Doctor, Doctor)" by Robert Palmer because of the line, "you'll like it on top." (Like I had any clue what THAT meant). He also confiscated my "Call Me" record by Blondie because it was from the sound track of American Gigolo. Today, there's nothing I can do to keep my daughter from hearing this song besides locking her in her room and eliminating all contact with the outside world. Eleven is just too young to be singing along with a song that sounds like it came from a pornographic movie.