Saturday, April 30, 2011

meet my daughter, the tramp

I came across this article last week, and BOY did it tick some boxes for me!

Living by the beach, we're used to seeing half-naked girls wandering the streets, but sometimes, you have to wonder, 'What parent would ever let their child out of the house looking the way she does?'

We have daughters.
My oldest daughter dresses modestly.
Our youngest is 6, and eyes off the mini-skirts and tarty knickers and crop-tops and skinny jeans and leopard-prints, but she isn't in control of the purse-strings.
I am.

And I'm a mean mummy (you just ask her, she'll tell you.)

I don't understand why any parent will buy tarty clothes for a small child, or let their teenage daughters go out looking like street-walkers.
What kind of message are we sending our girls?
You're not worth anything, so we don't care how you look?
Don't have any respect for yourself?
Look like a tart, so all the boys are looking at your body and not caring about your character?

The article I've linked to ends with these words... (emphasis mine)

In 2007, the American Psychological Association's Taskforce On The Sexualization Of Girls  issued a report linking early sexualization with three of the most common mental-health problems of girls and women: eating disorders, low self-esteem and depression. There's nothing inherently wrong with parents wanting to appease their daughters by buying them the latest fashions. But is getting cool points today worth the harm dressing little girls like prostitutes could cause tomorrow?
A line needs to be drawn, but not by Abercrombie. Not by Britney Spears. And not by these little girls who don't know better and desperately need their parents to be parents and not 40-year-old BFFs.

What do YOU think? if you have daughters, are you concerned by the fashions we see in our shops? or do you think they should be free to wear what they like?


  1. My daughters are 38 and 34, so I no longer have any say in how they dress. But when they were little, they wore age appropriate clothes.
    Most of my friends with younger children also dress them age appropriately, neither of my grand daughters is allowed to look like a tart either.

  2. I hate when you see parents blaming the stores for the way their daughter is dressing when clearly she's not old enough to be buying the clothes herself. It's as bad as parents who sue McDonalds because their four-year-old is fat.
    If you buy child mini skirts and hooker shoes, or you let them eat McDonalds every day, you have no one to blame but yourself.
    When did so many parents stop being able to say no?

  3. I am concerned about the fashions for sure. My daughter is 11 and I hold the purse strings. She is getting to the age where she can now fit into the xxs clothes at JJs and Supre. This scares me. I go shopping with her and try to appease her need to get out of Best and Less clothes and go a little bit older, but at the same time I am very strict with how much body she is covering. You want to wear a crop top? Sure ... with a full length singlet top underneath. You want to wear a short skirt? Sure, with leggings. You want to wear a short skirt AND a crop top? NO way. Shirt skirt must have a full top. Short top must have a long skirt or jeans. We talk a lot about it. We look at the world's greatest actresses and models and we see that they are classy. We are aiming for classy not skanky. I hope it's working (oh man, I hope it's working).

  4. In addition to agreeing with the excellent points already made above, I actually find it offensive to see kids in inappropriate clothing when in public - as do many others I know.

    Maybe clothing choices should be more of a discussion point at schools? I'm not advocating transfer of responsibility to the teacher, but there's no real open debate on this issue and as far as I'm concerned, it affects the whole community.

  5. I have two daughters, soon to be three and I am not a prude by any means. Although I am disgusted at some of the clothing I see in stores that are marketed for CHILDREN their age.
    I don't want my four year old to be seen as a sexual object. Here's a thought, how about we dress her age appropriately? I work in an industry where I deal with people who abuse children and the sexualisation of our children does not help the issue.
    Not one bit.
    For now, I am fortunate that they are still of an age where I am the boss of them. I am fearful for what lies ahead of me in a couple of years time!

  6. With two girls, this really worries me. I was nodding my head throughout your post. I totally agree that dressing like this at such a young age will have ramifications. It has to!
    I dress pretty conservatively (I like to think I have classic taste!!) and hope that my girls are inspired by this. Here's hoping... :)


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