The past three years have been quite a journey for actress, singer, cover girl and business owner, Mindee Ong. Since gaining stardom following the success of Royston Tan’s ‘881’ and 12 Lotus, the petite starlet hasn’t stopped shining. She admitted that it was not an easy feat, but her determination to realize her dreams and resilient nature earned her the success that she has always wished for.
Mindee Ong, 30, has been in show business since she was 17 years old. From being the youngest finalist in a Talent Search Singing Contest to countless of leading roles in both mainstream and independent movies, theaters and television (supporting roles and commercial), Mindee has most definitely amassed multitude of experiences – both the highs and the lows. Not to forget also that this multi-talented starlet was hand picked to be the first Singaporean ambassador for Sembonia. Her Spring/Summer’09 collection was launched last June.
Despite being awarded ‘Babe Of The Year’ title by The New Paper Flame Awards (2007), listed as The Straits Times Life!’s Power List ‘Faces to Watch’ (2007) and nominated as the ‘Most Popular Local Movie Star’ for Singapore Entertainment Awards (2009), Mindee remained humble and working harder than ever.
Mindee is a public figure admired by fans from all walks of life, especially teenagers who love her for her unique style and Über cool personality. We managed to catch up with Mindee recently to speak with her about her experience growing up, her secret best friend and her thoughts about today’s sexually liberated teenagers.
S: During puberty, most kids are uncomfortable with their image, body, etc. What was it like for you?
M: Honestly, I don’t really remember. I guess I was too busy trying to be a singer that I didn’t really pay attention to those things. Although I must say that I’ve always wanted to be taller.
S: Didn’t you feel weird about the changes you were going through (things like developing breasts, acne problems and menstruating)?
M: I was a late bloomer (laughs). I was not the first one to get my period. Most of my classmates had it before me, so I learned from their experience.
S: What was the hardest experience for you as a teenager?
M: I didn’t really have that many close friends growing up. That was quite difficult for me because I couldn’t share my thoughts, problems or feelings freely. I was quite the loner. My nanny was and still is my best friend. I tell her everything. She was my support system.
S: So you think it’s important for teenagers to be close to their parents during their puberty years?
M: Well…. I was never really close to my parents during my early teens but I was lucky to have my nanny. Friendship with your peers’ good but support from family is of paramount importance. I mean…you cannot really learn much from kids who are as lost as you are.
S: What sort of things did you learn from your nanny?
M: Almost everything really. Despite the age gap, we spoke about everything from menstruation, sex, BGR (boy-girl-relationship), infections and many more. She would cut out newspaper articles on teenage pregnancies, made me watch crime watch programs about molestation, etc. I must say that her scare tactics worked like a charm. I was really scared to even have a boyfriend.
S: Will you do the same for your kids? Will you discuss those topics with them openly?
M: Definitely! I want my children to have the same kind of bonding that my nanny and I had. I know it’s easier said than done because I am quite conservative. But I rather they speak to me than unreliable sources. Children today are exposed to all kinds of information online and pornography is easily accessible. Very, very scary!
S: Teenagers now are sexually liberated. The phenomenon is worrying because the number of teenage pregnancies, abortions and sti/stds is at record high. What’s your advice to teenagers pertaining to these issues?
M: I would say that life is all about choices. You can choose to do the right thing or bear the consequences of your actions. One wrong move can change your entire life. If you are curious about sex, speak to someone knowledgeable about the issue. If you don’t feel comfortable discussing it with you parents, talk to your doctor, counselor or call a helpline. You are only young once so live it to the fullest. There will be plenty of time to do all the adult things when you get older. SEXXIE
To read more about Mindee Ong visit:
Read Mindee’s blog: www.alivenotdead.com/mindeeong
Visit Trolley @ 88 Club St. Singapore.