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Dear Teen Shows: Can We Please Stop Glorifying Toxic Guys?

Dear Teen Shows: Can We Please Stop Glorifying Toxic Guys?

A representation on a number of the biggest programs, figures and relationships that shaped this generation of women and a demand healthier depictions of love and boundaries.

Content caution: this informative article contains themes of intimate attack, and psychological and real punishment.

As soon as the teenager mystery sensation “Pretty Little Liars” first aired on ABC Family when you look at the fall of 2010, I happened to be nine yrs old.

My older sis ended up being very nearly 13 and it, of course, so was I since she was watching. I became conscious that the show’s themes had been a touch too complex for me personally, nonetheless it felt cool to view something which all of the girls in center and senior school had been raving about. In the first period associated with the show, I viewed as Aria Montgomery, a 16 yr old woman, fell deeply in love with her 22 yr old English teacher, Ezra. Even though it absolutely was revealed that Ezra had additionally dated Aria’s friend that is best, Alison (when she had been 15!), and deliberately pursued Aria to be able to compose a novel about her life, fans remained rooting for alleged “Ezria.” The series ended in 2017, Aria and Ezra were happily married and had adopted a child together: fulfilling the fantasies of viewers who bought into this undeniably unacceptable relationship by the time. But why? Why would a lot of women, including myself at one point, glorify objectively pedophilic behavior from a grown man and offer the ups-and-downs of an acutely toxic relationship?

Before “Pretty Little Liars,” the exact same generation of teenagers ended up being embroiled within the ultra-rich, fast-paced NYC lifestyle of Chuck Bass and Blair Waldorf regarding the CW’s “Gossip Girl.” Within the pilot episode, which premiered in 2007, Chuck Bass tries to rape 15 12 months old Jenny Humphrey at a rooftop celebration in Manhattan.