Sometimes I wonder if people don't have something better to do with their time than bash Twilight.
I know it's not a perfect series. But really. The intense Twi-bashing is starting to seem a little overkill.
But there's more to it. I work in Jr. High ministry. I care a LOT about jr. high girls. And when people use unkind language to bash the book that a lot of these girls adore, it starts to feel like an attack on these girls. And you know what? Sometimes it is.
And it's pointless. You can never change whether or not someone likes something by bashing it! They'll just get defensive. And if you're not trying to change their minds, what are you doing other than letting off your own negative feelings in a public way? Which really doesn't do anything other than a) stir up more negativity and b) hurt the feelings of any fans who happen to overhear you.
Well tough? Not so. Teen girls suffer from some of the lowest esteem of any group in the world and bashing their favorite book with cruel jeering words is NOT helpful. When you bash something that someone likes, you essentially bash that person's essence. (And remember how many of them are your friends on facebook, please!)
It'll hurt them and it won't change their minds. Again, what is the point?
I understand many of you need to let off steam about bad grammar and Edward being a stalker... I have my own rant needs at times. But the trick is making sure that your rant listeners are those who sympathize with you, or have given you permission to go off on a rant.
So please, have some consideration and do it in private with people you KNOW share your feelings. And then, please be respectful of the real people involved. Stephanie Meyers is a human being and child of God and deserves to be treated as such. Teenage girls are young women struggling to understand themselves and their place in the world. They are learning to make wise decisions. They also deserve kindness and encouragement, rather than derision. Do they sometimes make silly decisions? Heck yes! Good grief, I once was a silly teenage girl myself and I didn't start thinking clearly until I entered college! Thank God I was surrounded by people who guided me and built me up, rather than telling my that my obsession with Tudor England was insane and dangerous! For the record, I turned out just fine despite spending most of my pre-teen years reading about those messed up family politics!
(Random: Henry VIII or Edward Cullen? Hmmm...)
I'm not saying that I'm perfect. When surrounded by Twi-haters I do tend to go with the flow. But I'm not saying that it's right. I'm sick of the name-calling and put downs - even in private.
We're better than this, aren't we?
Instead of bashing Twilight, why not write your own series? Or if you're not a writer, find some really good books (like Regina Doman's Fairy Tale Novels or Robin McKinley's Beauty) to recommend instead.
Believe it or not, it is hard to find good young adult romances. Teen girls actually don't have limitless variety to choose from. A lot (I could even say the majority) of young adult romances are crass, boring and cheesy. Twilight at least aspires to be classical, poetical, and uphold some semblance of virtue.
I'm not saying it is an emblem of perfection. But I've been investigating what young teens actually have to choose from, and once you exhaust Austen and Bronte, the pickings are slim. I can understand why they would turn to Twilight with an exclamation of delight and relief. (Especially since it's a series that understands and borrows themes from Austen and Bronte!)
You don't have to love Twilight. You don't have to like it. But please, think before you speak, and consider that this is a subject dear to the heart of many young women, and there are better ways to help them than using negative words.