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Bristol Palin: I Do It All for My Son

Bristol Palin.

There were more than a few smirks when the news came yesterday that Bristol Palin would be returning to Dancing With the Stars for another go at the mirror ball in this fall’s All-Star season.

But Bristol couldn’t care less. In fact, the daughter of former Alaska governor Sarah Palin is perfectly comfortable with her identity as a reality-TV fixture.

“You’re going to talk about me whether I’m in my little life in Alaska or if I’m in L.A., so I might as well have fun with it,” Bristol told reporters at a Television Critics Association event, as reported by People.

“I just think that God provides opportunities like this, and you can either go out and do them or not do them.”

Most of all, she adds, appearing on shows such as DWTS, Sarah Palin’s Alaska and her own Bristol Palin: Life’s a Tripp allows her to raise her son, Tripp, without worrying about finances. “Do I like to provide for my son? Yes, I do.”

But before you start smirking again, consider this:

Bristol is part of our new breed of celebrities – folks famous because they’re willing to show themselves, warts and all, on reality TV. Whether they’re battling other contestants on a desert island for a million dollars, picking potential mates in exotic locales or letting cameras into their homes as they go about their lives, reality stars are here to stay, and we can’t get enough of them.

So why are we so surprised that people like Bristol keep going back to new TV projects? It’s profitable, and it doesn’t take much effort on their part other than an anything-goes attitude and a thick skin.

And when you’re a young mom – at 21, Bristol is barely an adult now – you’re in the difficult position of being responsible for another human being while still trying to figure out your own place in the world. For her, not having to worry about putting food on Tripp’s cartoon-character plate every day is just one less worry on her list.

Do you have to like her? No. Do you have to agree with her views? No. Are you required to approve of the way she’s raising her child? Nope.

But don’t criticize her for loving the reality-TV life unless you’re willing to help put an end to our endless craving for it.

[Photo: via Twitter]

Read more of Shana’s writing at Momsperiments.

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