Beyond a radiant smile: Miss Drontense breaks down the taboos surrounding mental health

Makeup, hairspray, flashy cameras and shiny crowns. When it comes to beauty pageants, many think of superficial smiles and the fierce battle for outward perfection. Rodsteni Ji Phueng Sang (16) from Dronten proves that things can be done differently. She will compete for the Miss Teen Flevoland title on Saturday, March 16. But for her, the beauty pageant is not just beauty theater. “I see it as an opportunity to break down taboos around mental health and reach young people suffering from depression.”

For Rodestini, the beauty pageant isn’t about the lights and prom dresses. “Miss Teen of Flevoland is about care and beauty, but it’s also about knowledge,” she says firmly.

To stay informed

The organization is looking for “beauties with brains.” The jury gives you two statements, about current events or climate, for example. Then you can tell us what you think about this matter. So it’s important to stay informed!’ Rodestiney strives to be a role model, not only for girls, but for all young people. Her decision to participate in the beauty pageant was not just an impulse. “I wanted to challenge myself, try something new. When you register to vote, you will not be asked about your clothing size, but rather about your motivations. I want to give a voice and a face to young people who, like me, suffer from depression.”

Depression at an early age

The topic is close to her heart. Already at the age of twelve, the Drunten native began to experience dark feelings. “I was suffering from depression and found it very difficult to ask for help,” Rodstini recalls. ‘I thought no one would understand me. But now I know that asking for help is a good thing, and talking is a relief.

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Rodestini found unconditional support from her mother. “You taught me that expressing feelings is a sign of strength, not weakness.” Now, stronger than ever, Rodestiney is ready to help others face their own battles. how do you do that? ‘of mine website “It’s online now,” she says proudly. “There I share ideas and experiences on how to get the best and most beautiful from yourself. Because beauty basically comes from within and shines brightest when you dare to be yourself and feel good about yourself.

Increase confidence

This experience brought more to Rodestini than she expected. She has evolved from a shy teenager into a bright, confident young woman. “I actually got a confidence boost,” she laughs. “I learn how to stand in front of the camera and how to stand and smile to express confidence while speaking.” In contrast to the image often painted of beauty pageants as a cut-throat competition, Rodestini describes a different atmosphere. “Real fans help each other out. I don’t see the other participants as competitors, we’re actually a close-knit group. We share stories and emotions and support each other to put on a great show together.

To vote

The beauty pageant consists of a number of selection rounds and castings. Rodestini and 15 other girls from Flevoland will reach the final for the Miss Teen Flevoland title on March 16. The winner will advance to the national Miss Netherlands election. Would you like to support Rodestini? maybe Connected To cast his vote.

Megan Vasquez

"Creator. Coffee buff. Internet lover. Organizer. Pop culture geek. Tv fan. Proud foodaholic."

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