I have decided that Pet Peeve Thursday will now be known as Tom Foolery Tuesday. Tom Foolery encompasses much more than Pet Peeve possibly could, which means that I won’t risk running out of things to share with you all for many weeks to come. I tend to more irritable at the beginning of the workweek, making me more likely to notice situations that fall under the category of tom foolery, thus the move to Tuesdays.
This week, the topic of my concern is clothing for young girls. When I was growing up, standards were a lot different than they are now. Girls wore dresses that were knee length or below, and if they wore pants, there was no way they were tight. I really hate to see how those standards have all but dissolved, and little girls sometimes resemble street walkers. I don’t mean for that to sound as harsh as it does because truthfully, the blame doesn’t belong on these young girls. It belongs on the parents. As a parent, you are the person responsible for purchasing your child’s clothes. If your daughter goes to school wearing low-rise jeans and a halter top, that is a poor reflection on you. I might not be “with the times”, or caught up on what the latest trends are, but I can tell you one thing: my daughter will be dressed appropriately for her age as long as I am the one buying her clothes.
I sometimes wonder what runs through the mind of a mother who makes a conscious decision to buy shorts so little that they couldn’t even pass for a decent pair of underwear, or how she could feel comfortable putting her 7 year old daughter in a string bikini, being fully aware of how prevalent pedophiles are in our communities. Now I am not saying that a little girl who dons a bikini deserves to be violated, please don’t make that assumption. What I am saying is that times are much different than they were when people in my generation were growing up, and we have to take precautions to protect our children from perverts. Just because something sold by a retailer is geared towards a younger age group, doesn’t mean that age group should necessarily be the consumers of those goods. I went to Walmart recently (always an abundance of tom foolery in Walmart) and was dismayed by how many bikinis I saw in the swimwear area. A mother would be hard pressed to find a one-piece swimsuit these days. But don’t give up, they are out there. I am a fan of Old Navy because despite the fact that they have an extensive collection of two piece suits for girls, they also have rash guards and board shorts for both sexes. They may be a little pricier than swimwear that you can find at some of the national discount chains, but the extra price is well worth the dignity that your daughter is able to maintain.
When you choose to have a child, you are telling the world that you accept complete responsibility for another human being. You may not have gotten a contract to sign at the hospital, but being a parent requires more than providing the basic necessities of food, shelter, and clothing. You must also instill good morals and a sense of self respect in that child. Dressing your child appropriately certainly doesn’t cover all the bases, but sending your daughter to school in what could be mistaken for underclothes will not have a positive impact her character.