Child Role Models: How Dangerous Behavior Is Influencing The Next Generation 

SANTA MONICA, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 19: JoJo Siwa attends the Snap Partner Summit 2023 at Barker Hangar on April 19, 2023 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images Snap, Inc.)
Charley Gallay/Getty Images Snap, Inc.

From 2015 to 2016, JoJo Siwa was on the show “Dance Moms” alongside her mother, Jessalynn Siwa. While she may not have been the best dancer, viewers always wanted to see more of her on screen. She has a big, bubbly personality and was always genuinely fun to watch. After two seasons on the show, she started a YouTube channel called “It’s JoJo Siwa,” which was a kids’ show—and kids loved her. It positively exploded. She gained a huge following and even created music for kids thereafter.

In January 2020, Siwa came out as a lesbian. Now, she is back in the news with a new podcast — “JoJo Siwa Now” — and a big announcement: She wants kids.

WESTWOOD, CA - NOVEMBER 12: Dancer Joelle Joanie 'JoJo' Siwa attends the premiere of Columbia Pictures' 'The Star' at Regency Village Theatre on November 12, 2017 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Barry King/Getty Images)BURBANK, CALIFORNIA: (FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY) In this image released on June 15, JoJo Siwa poses for a photo backstage during iHeartRadio Can't Cancel Pride at iHeartRadio Theater on April 24, 2023 in Burbank, California. (Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images for iHeartRadio)

[L] Photo by Barry King/Getty Images. [R] Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images for iHeartRadio

I have said previously that I do not believe Siwa is a lesbian, which she heard about and didn’t like. Nevertheless, I stand by it. There are, obviously, lesbians who grow up to marry women. The women I know who have chosen this route are often women who have been abused by men in some way, be it emotional or physical. They almost experience a repulsion of men for the rest of their lives. Ellen DeGeneres has talked about the sexual abuse she experienced as a child, and she has been married to a woman for many years now.

But Siwa’s story? I have seen this story and so have you: Young girls become famous and want to break away from the child-like persona that made them famous — and they go through “a phase.” Call it a coming-of-age phase, per se. These girls are the Cyndi-Lauper-type girls who “just want to have fun.” They make out with other girls at a high school or college party, but they are not really lesbians. They grow up and out of that phase. They go on to marry a man and have children.

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Take, for instance, Demi Lovato, who announced she was a lesbian, then non-binary, then back to being a woman. She is now an engaged woman. Miley Cyrus was also a temporary lesbian. She said she came out to her mom when she was younger, then she came out as a lesbian after her marriage failed with Liam. Now, she is dating a man again, a drummer who came with her to the Grammys.

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 04: Miley Cyrus accepts the "Best Pop Solo Performance" Award for "Flowers" onstage during the 66th GRAMMY Awards at Crypto.com Arena on February 04, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for The Recording Academy)

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

And, of course, who could forget Lindsey Lohan? She was dating Samantha Ronson for a while, another child actress who became a lesbian. But, Lohan grew up, got married, and just had a child.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JANUARY 08: Lindsay Lohan attends the "Mean Girls" New York premiere at AMC Lincoln Square Theater on January 08, 2024 in New York City. (Photo by John Lamparski/WireImage)

John Lamparski/WireImage

So why does any of this matter? It matters because it impacts our children and because it’s relevant to the next generation. This type of behavior becomes dangerous. These women are famous and because their phase is platformed, it is treated as something more than just a phase.

JoJo Siwa has recently discussed on her podcast what coming out to her mother was like. She says she was 12-years-old. That’s right: 12-years-old. Do we assign meaning to anything that a 12-year-old says? Girls’ emotions are all over the place around that age when they are going through puberty; that is why people often say girls are much more difficult than boys when they are teenagers. Factually, a 12-year-old’s brain simply is not developed. In fact, it’s not developed until age 25.

Then, in regards to the conversation between Siwa and her mom, Siwa says, “My mom actually made my coming out to her super easy.” And when “everyone kinda caught a vibe” between her and a girl who ended up becoming her first girlfriend, her mom asked her, “Do you like her as a friend or as more than a friend?” All the while, Siwa has lots of children’s eyes watching her every move, hanging on her every word. They’re the kids who fell in love with her on YouTube, so they’re still listening to her while she makes her lesbian journey sound fun and easy.

Yet many lesbians’ journeys have been far from fun and easy. The highest domestic violence statistics exist amongst the lesbian community, with 43.8% of lesbian women and 61.1% of bisexual women having experienced rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner. Those are facts, and they are facts that JoJo Siwa is not considering while she goes through what I perceive to plausibly be a phase in her life.


Plus, biologically speaking, lesbians cannot naturally have children. But on her podcast, she says she is looking for someone who is ready to have kids because she is “very near ready.” Siwa says, “That is something that I care very, very much about.” Now, I love that she is talking about wanting to have children and making that aspirational because that is actually not common in Hollywood whatsoever. However, she is clearly not considering the implications of being a lesbian and having children. To have children, she would have to go through IVF, a tremendously expensive, emotional, and painful process. The reality of IVF is not flippant; it is severe. Further, it is not guaranteed.

JoJo Siwa may just be wanting to separate herself from the big bow phase, but the lesbian phase may be one she looks back on with regret. Perhaps she will look to some of the women who have lived lives similar to hers to learn from where they are now because her current decisions are in the public consciousness. She is influencing the children who are following her by glamorizing these decisions, even if unintentionally so.

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