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WTF? Dance Moms: 8-Year-Old “Topless” Showgirls

Oh, I don’t know where to begin on this one…

“The idea with the fan dance is that you cover your body with the fans so you give the illusion that you are nude underneath the fans.”

So the illusion does not promote pedophiles or oversexualize young girls? I would not even want my daughter to see this show, let alone partipate!

“I think people are just going to watch the feathers, the fans. I really do.”

Um, that is not what I am watching. I’m looking for those tans bras to make sure those little bodies are covered, and I am not a pedophile.

“Everyone in the industry knows the girls are completely covered and everything’s harmless.”

Tell that to the young victims of molestation.

“These mothers need to stop questioning me.”

Then stop going on TV.

“I’m hot; I’m mean; You can’t have me; You can’t afford me; It’s crotch, boobs!”

OMG! Seriously, harmless with those statements. What does “you can’t afford me” mean? Are you training little prostitutes?

Even the little girls feel “a little naked”.

I don’t think there is anything wrong with the naked body. I encourage my children to skinny dip when we are in nature and go backpacking. There is a big difference between being comfortable with your body and swimming in nature than going on national television and acting like you work in a strip club.  My little girl doesn’t even know what a strip club is.

You can tell the audience is uncomfortable watching the performance.

Lifetime has removed the episode, but the damage has been done to the participants. Gawker explains:

Lifetime, the TV network that “celebrates, entertains, and supports women,” has finally pushed its schadenfreude reality programming too far. After airing an extraordinarily child-sexualizing of Dance Moms once, the network pulled the episode from rotation and scrubbed it from the internet. The episode in question? “Topless Showgirls,” in which a troop of 8- to 13-year-old girls simulate toplessness and perform a burlesque.

The episode aired once two weeks ago. A Lifetime spokesperson confirms that, after airing the episode, the network decided never to air again in reruns and never to make it available on iTunes, Amazon, or MyLifetime.com. In “Topless Showgirls,” Pittsburgh dance instructor Abby Lee Miller teaches her students a “classic” burlesque fan dance, which they are to perform in flesh-toned bras to create the “illusion of nudity.” The dance must convey that the children are “hot,” “mean,” and that men “can’t afford” them.

How this episode ever made it on the air is beyond me.

If you want to watch the dance, you can on Gawker. I don’t want to post it here. I don’t want to attract pedophiles.


  1. How the parents ever tolerated that is beyond me. I really feel for those kids. Way too young to be put through that.

  2. Wow, that is disgusting. It’s no wonder we have pedophiles with children being paraded like this. The dance instructor or whatever was a bitch. My daughter would never dance like this at that age! Once she’s over 18 and out of my house I have no control but I also hope we are raising her with better morales. Gross.

  3. Thank you Jennifer, for this post about a “cute” TV program that clearly shows the sexual exploitation of girls. Such “reality TV” can shape the real lives of children and fuel the pedophiles who watch it.
    We must speak up against these role models. It’s not enough to flip the channel if we don’t want to see the titillation and fighting which is the entertainment format of such shows. I saw several promotions for this program and turned away – too busy focusing instead on my newly published novel, Vagilantes, which digs into child sexual abuse. I regret not stepping up to the challenge of Dance Moms, as you have done.
    It’s not too late. I may be a few days behind the fast-ball of social media, but I’ll follow you up to the plate and take a swing at this perversion of girls who love to dance.
    Thank you again, for your strong voice.

    • Jennifer Lance says:

      I am also a little slow to respond. It aired two weeks ago. As a show I don’t watch, I had no idea until I saw it on Gawker.

  4. This is an abomination. The mothers that permit their daughters to engage in this burlesque should be thoroughly ashamed. I thought toddlers and tiaras, that whole thing where little tiny girls are made-up with mascara, lip stick, and rouge, and sometimes perform sexualized dances in slinky outfits at beauty pageants, was bad. This is worse. Pittsburgh dance instructor Abby Lee Miller is a monster.

    “The dance must convey that the children are “hot,” “mean,” and that men “can’t afford” them.” Unfrigging believable.

  5. This is outrageous. These statements seem to come from people who must have lost their common sense. Poor, poor children!

    And it’s beyond me how they actually admit and label their programming approach as schadenfreude!

  6. Jennifer Lance says:

    I got an email asking why I would post this on Eco Child’s Play. I thought I should explain. This is a personal blog, as well as one that informs on natural and eco-friendly parenting. Part of raising a child with these values include other values, such as where the media is commerialicizing childhood. Although it is easier to see a connection between overconsumption and protecting our environment, it is also about protecting our children.

  7. Abbyleeisapedophile says:

    The dance itself isn’t inappropriate its the costumes!! UGH!! Abby lee is a secret pedophile, if the underwear they were wearing was longer, and if the bra wasn’t so tiny, maybe they would have won!! ABBY OPEN YOUR EYE”S THE Group dance did not get first place, because the judges don’t want to see this type of crap, I hope when abby heard they yanked this episode that she learned her lesson. Stop being a pedophile, thers nothing wrong with the human body, but this is the sexuality of the human body!! STOP ABBY LEE!!

  8. I saw a “non-controversial” ep of dance moms and was so grossed out. There is NO AGE where exploitative serialization is appropriate, much less the predatory exploitation of little girls (by their mom no less!). If I ever have a daughter I would NEVER be ok with them dancing in bikini tops when these little girls don’t even have breasts yet!!! Gross gross gross!!!! Is lifetime really a channel for women or in actuality a channel for pedophiles?! have I said GROSS yet? As a straight female in her 20s I’m seriously grossed by what these moms have their young vulnerable grls wear.

  9. *serialization = sexualization ( damn autocorrect)

  10. any reality tv program with underage childs should be banned from tv, and the producers finned so much no other producer DARES to make them…

    luckylly in argentina a famous argentinian producer named Marcelo Tinelly dared to make a child’s version of “dancing for a dream”, and the regulatory entity finned him, the channel and make the channel cancell the show after the episode where the girls compete in reagetton moves and the jury making them act more slutty and with rumors of a pole dance competition later…

    for a country with SO MANY CHRISTIAN VALUES (or at least that’s what american try to sell to the rest of the world) making, promoting and selling such disgusting shows as toddlers and tiaras, honey bubu, dance moms… really??? don’t blame the rest of the world if they start calling you a pedocountry

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