Monday, February 10, 2014

Dear Justin...

Dear Justin Bieber,

I've known about you and have been listening to your music since you were twelve.

Not because I particularly love pop tween music, but because my daughter loves your music, and I listen to what she listens to. She loves the song "Baby", by the way, and absolutely adores the video to "One Less Lonely Girl".

I have to give you credit. You are a talented entertainer, and have found your niche playing the heartstrings of young girls across the globe. I even read that a certain model, at least 10 years your senior, divorced her actor husband just so she could be with you. It seems like you had everything a person could ever want: lots of money, lots of friends, a successful career, world-wide popularity, good looks, and a loving mom. What else could anybody ask for?

So what happened, Justin?

I gave you a pass when I heard that you spit on some fans (even though that's pretty gross), because I can see where you might get tired of people mobbing you everywhere you go. I defended you when my husband said that our daughter shouldn't be listening to your music, not because of the lyrics, but because of your personal choices that are so frequently publicized. I even looked the other way when you urinated into a mop bucket at a nightclub (which, incidentally, I believe that Scott, Kourtney K's boyfriend, did the same thing. I don't know what that says about either one of you, really.)

See, I gave you the benefit of the doubt. You're a kid. I know your mother probably didn't raise you to think that you could pee in anything else but a urinal, because that's what moms do. We do our best to teach our kids to make good choices, even, and I will add especially, when you're under pressure. And I can imagine that you're under an incredible amount of pressure. Maybe that's what makes so many kids in the entertainment industry flop. They can't handle the fame, the money, the gossip, the paparazzi, the groupies, the drugs, the alcohol, the people who use you for what they can get from you rather than loving you for who you are. I get it, Justin, but I can't defend you anymore.

What you don't seem to understand is that in a small town in the middle of a state situated on the east coast is a little girl who loves you, Justin. She looks up to you. She is watching what you do, the choices you make, the things you say, how you act. She believes the words in your songs and wants them to be true. She believes in true love and fairy-tale romances, in boys who want to rescue girls from being lonely. Then she hears the news of your latest antic and she's understandably confused.

You have all the resources to do good in the world, Justin. You have everything you need in life to be a good role model and make a positive impact on people. Think about how many lives you touch on a daily basis. You have talent, you have celebrity power, you have money. You could be speaking to middle schools across the country about bullying. You could be traveling to Africa or the Dominican Republic and offering to help with food, clean water, or building a school. You could make a difference, Justin. You really could. And all it would take is making that brave choice. I know it would take courage, but I also believe that courage is something you possess.

Maybe I make it all out to be too simple. I'm not in the position you are and never will be. I don't know how hard it is to be you.

You'll probably never read this, since you are Justin Bieber and I am a mother who writes a small blog for a handful of people. And because I am the mother of a very impressionable daughter, I have to cut you out of our lives.

We have to be very, very careful of who and what we idolize.

Choices don't just affect the here and now, by the way. They affect everyone around us, even the people we don't know are watching. The ripple effect of the choices we make is far-reaching, and they stay with us for the rest of our lives. And sometimes the choices we make can cause someone else to stumble, and right now, I have to make sure that the person who stumbles is not my daughter.

But this is probably something you have already heard a thousand times, even at your young age.

Good-bye, and good luck, Justin.

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