Amber Rose has something to say to anyone who expects her to be a role model to their children: Don't. On Tuesday, the 33-year-old took to Instagram to answer fan questions and clear up misconceptions about herself. One big one? That she should be expected to model good behaviour for young people who follow her on social media."Amber my teenage kids follow you, you should be more of a role model to them," one commenter wrote, prompting a lengthy and fiery response from the star.
"Welp this is more of a statement then [sic] a question but I get this one a lot as well," Rose began. "The nicest way I can put it is..... RAISE YOUR OWN KIDS!!! Stop looking for famous people to influence your children. I am not a role model to ur kids. How about you be that[?] I'm not here to raise your children for you or influence them in anyway [sic]."
Rose, who has a 4-year-old with ex Wiz Khalifa named Sebastian, makes an excellent point. While we often expect celebrities to demonstrate good behaviour given the number of eyes on them, we tend to forget — thanks in part to cult of celebrity worship — that they are people, not idols. It's also worth pointing out that Rose is not, say, a Disney channel star — somebody whose main audience is children, in which case the expectation for a celeb to model certain behaviour is at least more understandable (though still unfair).
Rose's fans largely seem to agree, leaving comments like "Preach it Amber!! You're amazing and on point!!" and "Can I just say thank you so much!!! Can people just stop judging others and mind their own business!!!" Someone else wrote: "Thank you!! Why is this even up for discussion? Communicate with your kids if you're so worried about them seeing what you can't control anyway." And this commenter minced no words pointing out the irony of the expectation that Rose filter her behaviour while parents neglect to filter the content their child consumes: "How can someone expect you to sensor [sic] your personal page and life, but not be expected to filter what the fuck their children see?" My favourite reaction, though, comes from a parent who is glad her daughter takes after Rose when it comes to slut-shaming, something the outspoken SlutWalk supporter (who led the event in L.A. last year) is constantly battling. The mom wrote, "My 17 yr old daughter LOVES you! A boy called her a hoe yesterday. She said 'Mom, I gave him the Amber Rose treatment!" followed by bicep flexing emoji.
But the latter half of Rose's message veers towards judgmental territory. Rose continued, "I have my own child that lives with me and knows me better than anyone knows me. I would never have my kid (even as a teenager) follow a 33-year-old grown woman on Social media. I filter everything that he watches and I will continue to do so until he's an adult and he is able to make his own decisions. You should do the same."
It's that last part — "you should do the same" — that becomes problematic. It's great that Rose has found a way to parent Sebastian that works for her. But telling other parents they are wrong for not doing things the same way is just another way to pass judgement on a fellow parent. Also, Rose's son is only four. It's likely that as he gets older, she will find it increasingly difficult to filter his world. Unless she plans on not getting him a smart phone, banning him from social media, and monitoring his internet use until the day he turns 18, controlling what her teenager sees may be a more difficult task than she imagined.