My Sunday night ritual for the last several weeks has been dinner with the family, kids sent to bed under their dad’s supervision and me in front of the TV with my cup of tea watching The Voice. Lately on a Sunday night it has been The Voice Kids. For the first time since the show started it was a very emotional one, but in particular for 12-year-old contestant Romy.

After an audition of Adele’s Turning Tables, which didn’t impress the judges enough to turn those chairs, she burst into tears in front of the audience.

Monday morning, this episode of The Voice Kids caused some chatter in the media, suggesting that this kind of rejection on such a big scale, on a national television show could “potentially do more damage than anything else to that child“.

One of the biggest critics was Channel Nine host, Karl Stefanofic emphasising “There’s a need for more protection in that situation”.

Personally, I didn’t feel uncomfortable watching Romy’s audition. She did an excellent job and should be proud of herself. It’s a big achievement getting through to the show and being among 100 young Australian singer to do so. As a parent I believe that it is our role to educate our children and protect them from inappropriate experiences and influences.

The experience of this girl in this episode, however, is not one of them.

The Voice Kids is a competition and parents should properly inform the kids that they may not be selected. The main idea when auditioning is having a great time, sharing one’s love of singing and performing.

Besides, if our children think that achieving something great is easy,  that is another flawed lesson. Life is tough and sometimes we fall and sometimes we get rejected. It is all about knowing how to lose with pride and learn from the experience. I am sure that for Romy being on The Voice Kids and watching the episode with her friends and family meant a great deal. I wonder if that will actually make her even more passionate about singing and even more determined to get better at it.

As a child I participated in a number of beauty competitions where I sometimes didn’t receive a title. I am still very proud of all of them, and even though occasionally I had a tear on the stage I was not embarrassed about losing and being emotional, nor had it harmed me emotionally.

Kids should be kids and allowed to grow at their own pace, learning from their experiences and influences to build a solid character able to withstand the challenges of adult life.


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