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Girls Gone ... Mild: Teens Encouraged to Cover Up

post #1 of 42
Thread Starter 
Faith-Based 'Pure Fashion' Program Preaches That Virtues and Modesty Are What's in Vogue


Now, I don't care about the religious aspect of it per se. What bothers me are some of the assumptions made in the article, and these are what I would like to hear your opinion about:

Quote:
"The idea with Pure Fashion is very countercultural," said Brenda Sharman, a life-long model, former Miss Georgia and creator of Pure Fashion. "It takes a girl who is brave and gutsy. ... This is not for the weak and wimpy girl ... to say, 'I'm different, and I'm going to preserve my innocence and virginity,' that's a girl who's radical!"
This seems to go along the same vein of "Today's youth is going down the gutter, they are so lost " imo

Quote:
"I don't want her to be distracted by men. So I kind of don't want men to look at her at all, not notice her," Tina said. "But I recognize that they will, so I just want to make sure they look at her in the way that I see her, which is pure and beautiful and innocent."
The stereotype of "guys are horny and only look at girls for sex" and how they can't control themselves. Guys don't look at a girl and think "Wow, I wonder if she'll go to the movies or for a walk in the park with me?" They only think "how can I get her in bed/in my backseat?"

And here's the one that burns my hide the most:
Quote:
Sharman drives home the message: Girls who expose too much, risk much more.

"If you are too steamy in your bikini, you will become a part of a statistic," Sharman told a roomful of 40 girls at the Atlanta conference. "By the age of 15, 76 percent of teens are involved in a sexual relationship. What do we expect, really, when so many girls have displayed their bodies to the world? ... For the first time teen girls have the highest gonorrhea rate in the nation, teen boys have the second. Approximately 400,000 teens have abortions every year. And according to UNICEF, half of all new HIV infections occur in young people 15-24."
What exactly is she trying to say? If you dress like a "slut" you're just begging for sex? And really, the message my cynical self took away from this quote was "Since guys can't keep it in their pants, it's up to us girls to dress "modestly" as so not to tempt the menfolk into sex."

Discuss!
post #2 of 42
:::sigh::: Yeah. I mean, I don't think there should be pressure on girls to dress "sexy" or "modestly". It's their sexuality, their bodies, and we should be helping them learn to understand it and make the choices they want to make.

I do tell my daughter sometimes when I think her shirt is especially low cut, because she has a really nice chest and I want to be sure she knows what other people may think when they see it displayed so noticeably... but if she's okay with it, well, her deal. And it doesn't mean that she's a "slut", or "asking for it, or destined to get an STD by age 18... I mean, it's kind of fun to dress looking good. I do it...

And those stats are wack. Wiki quotes Scientific America saying that 70% of 15-17 year old girls stated that they were virgins in a 2002 poll. There are no cites for the articles claims, including the statement that 76% of girls are involved in a sexual relationship by age 15. Admittedly sexual relationship doesn't = intercourse, but that huge of a discrepancy seems like a huge red flag.

And really, I'm not sure we all agree that teen sex is bad. I don't, anyway. Coerced sex is bad, sex when you're not ready is bad, STDs are bad... but sex? No. Kinda fun, really.
post #3 of 42
I had really big boobs from when I was in middle school and no matter what I wore unless it was up to my neck there was a lot of cleavage going on. I didn't try to dress slutty or anything at all, in fact because of all the attention it drew I tended to dress in baggy clothes and sweatshirts were something I wore almost daily just to deflect getting stared at by guys. I guess I would have considered that people thought I dressed slutty because no matter what I wore it was hello boobs!

I find this purity clothing or whatever it is about as reliable as purity rings which is to say a lot of the kids do it to please their parents and then turn around and are having plenty of sex anyway!

I love how she says you will be part of a statistic like you are just begging to be assaulted by a man for not wearing something head to toe
post #4 of 42
Hmm, when i was 15 floor-length gypsy skirts were in fashion. They were very flowing, very loose and very long. Showed NOTHING, no leg, no silhouette, nothing. And at 15 i was having a lot of (consensual, protected, monogamous) sex, and could easily hike that skirt up around my hips!

Seriously, we should be teaching kids about self-respect, demanding healthy respect from partners and making good decisions THEY wanted to make, not trying to cover every inch of their flesh lest a male of the species looks at them.
post #5 of 42
I'm not particularly concerned about immodest dress, although I admit that I don't think it's attractive to see young girls dressed in Bratz-doll-like fashion. I don't worry about modest dress and my dd. I do have a little sympathy for the sentiment behind the quote about men looking at teenage girls.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Equuskia View Post



The stereotype of "guys are horny and only look at girls for sex" and how they can't control themselves. Guys don't look at a girl and think "Wow, I wonder if she'll go to the movies or for a walk in the park with me?" They only think "how can I get her in bed/in my backseat?"
My dd is 13 y.o. She is my height, and has a better figure - more developed - than I had when I went to university. Men look at her. A lot. It's automatic - she comes into view and I see men's eyes do an up/down/up again - often stopping at certain parts of her body. It's more than a little disturbing to see her being "checked out" by men in their 20's, 30's, 50's and older. I can't help but feel a little protective at that moment.

So I have a lot of sympathy for a mom who wants a modest dress code. I'm not going to implement one, but I understand the motivation.
post #6 of 42
I am/was a semi-modest dresser (never wore long skirts, but I didn't generally wear tight clothes and my belly never showed, never showed cleavage, ect) and I had sex at 15. I know girls that showed off their body and waited a lot longer. But in any case, I don't think teens having sex is necessarily a bad thing anyway. They are humans with hormones and if they are responsible, I'm not going to think they are causing problems or out to ruin the "statistics" just because they aren't 18/21/finished with college/married/in love/whatever.

I want my kids to respect themselves and others and only do things they feel good about. So modest clothes/showy clothes, sex/no sex, I just want them to feel good about themselves and do what is right for THEM.

And the idea that boys/men can't control themselves is just horrible. Sure, most male's thoughts are going to stray, but that doesn't mean they are going rape a girl or even put pressure on her to do something she doesn't want to do. My BF admits to me that he thinks about it constantly. He said one time at work, a customer called and her voice was to die for and yeah, he thought about it. But that doesn't mean he's sleeping around and hell, he doesn't even bug ME (not much anyway) when he wants it and I'm not in the mood. Thinking about sex or visualizing a person naked is not wrong....it's normal! And quite honestly, no amount of clothes is going to keep someone from thinking another person is sexy. If they find them attractive, they find them attractive.
post #7 of 42
I really don't know where to start with this other than to say that a writer who starts with the premise that all men are sexual fiends and all women are prey is in a pretty disturbed place.
post #8 of 42
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ollyoxenfree View Post
I'm not particularly concerned about immodest dress, although I admit that I don't think it's attractive to see young girls dressed in Bratz-doll-like fashion. I don't worry about modest dress and my dd. I do have a little sympathy for the sentiment behind the quote about men looking at teenage girls.



My dd is 13 y.o. She is my height, and has a better figure - more developed - than I had when I went to university. Men look at her. A lot. It's automatic - she comes into view and I see men's eyes do an up/down/up again - often stopping at certain parts of her body. It's more than a little disturbing to see her being "checked out" by men in their 20's, 30's, 50's and older. I can't help but feel a little protective at that moment.

So I have a lot of sympathy for a mom who wants a modest dress code. I'm not going to implement one, but I understand the motivation.
I understand, but girls check out men too. Teachers, the coach, etc. And their thoughts are anything but "pure". And men (and boys) in general don't go around in public "baring flesh". So how can we protect boys and men from the devouring eyes of girls? By covering them up?

And please don't think I'm picking on you. Not at all! It's just the idea in general that, like orangefoot eloquently stated, men are lions just waiting to prey on the innocent little lambs. I think it's demeaning to males and victimizes females.
post #9 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Equuskia View Post
I understand, but girls check out men too. Teachers, the coach, etc. And their thoughts are anything but "pure". And men (and boys) in general don't go around in public "baring flesh". So how can we protect boys and men from the devouring eyes of girls? By covering them up?

And please don't think I'm picking on you. Not at all! It's just the idea in general that, like orangefoot eloquently stated, men are lions just waiting to prey on the innocent little lambs. I think it's demeaning to males and victimizes females.
Except there's a serious "ick" factor when an old man is devouring a young girl with his eyes that isn't there when a young girl checks out a boy or man. At least for me there is. There's also an issue with older men having sex with girls - that's why there are statutory rape laws against that kind of sexual activity, but no "Lolita" laws. Now I don't think every man who looks at a girl or women is a lion waiting to prey on her. Modest or immodest dress isn't a particular hang up for me personally. Too many people conflate dress and morality.

I'm just providing my personal experience. Once you see your pubescent child being assessed as a sexual being by someone who is old enough to be her great-grandfather, you might feel a little icky about it too. You also might feel a little sympathy for the parents who instinctively want to cover up the child. It's a protective sheltering response. It may not be effective, but it's instinctive.
post #10 of 42
Clicked on the link. Got a popup ad for match.com. I sense some irony there.
post #11 of 42
The wording is disturbing to me as well. Modest dress dosnt prevent perverted thoughts those will happen no matter what a person is wearing or not wearing. Men are not inherently evil like everyone else there are good and bad among them.
post #12 of 42
Addressing the article itself, not the complex modesty thing...

Yuck, ick, no. How insulting. "Too steamy in your bikini and you will become a statistic!"

Oh, for crying out loud. The sky is falling! The sky is falling!
post #13 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoBecGo View Post
Hmm, when i was 15 floor-length gypsy skirts were in fashion. They were very flowing, very loose and very long. Showed NOTHING, no leg, no silhouette, nothing. And at 15 i was having a lot of (consensual, protected, monogamous) sex, and could easily hike that skirt up around my hips!
Seriously, we should be teaching kids about self-respect, demanding healthy respect from partners and making good decisions THEY wanted to make, not trying to cover every inch of their flesh lest a male of the species looks at them.
Totally agree! I was wearing and doing the same thing at 15.
post #14 of 42
I dressed fairly hootchie (booty shorts, skimpy tank tops, etc) and I was a virgin until marriage. So eat that whoever wrote that article.
post #15 of 42
Quote:
For the first time teen girls have the highest gonorrhea rate in the nation, teen boys have the second. Approximately 400,000 teens have abortions every year. And according to UNICEF, half of all new HIV infections occur in young people 15-24
These have to be world wide statistics.. that is.. if they aren't being pulled out of their butts in the first place.

The whole thing is disbursing to me. I had sex at 15... I wore nothing but jeans and baggy t-shirts. It has nothing to do with how you dress and to say so shows a lot of ignorance in my opinion.

I think the best thing we can do for our girls is to teach them to respect themselves and to have safe sex if that is what they choose. Because no matter what parents think.. no amount of shaming, yelling or screaming is going to stop them if that is what they want to do.
post #16 of 42
I think this is HILARIOUS! I know way to many guys that LOVE nothing more then a woman in a pair of nice fitting jeans and a turtle neck...seriously, guys are going to look no matter what and yeah it maybe "gross" or "unwanted" but it's human nature! I would be interested in seeing TRUE facts connecting the type of clothes a girl wears to if shes having sex..but I know there are no such facts
post #17 of 42
I looked at the picture of the "models" and they seemed to be wearing rpetty std. sundresses and cardigans. This just doesn't seem groundbreaking at all, from a fashion standpoint. Maybe I am out of touch but when I was a teen, *most* kids dressed in pretty normal clothes, not in "slutty" stuff from A&F.
post #18 of 42
How do we expect our kids to grow into adults with a healthy attitude to sexuality when we give them this whole "sex is bad" vibe?
post #19 of 42
My problem with the whole idea layed out in the article in the OP is that women (and girls) are apperently responsable for a man's self control. It's her job to not entice him into looking, as opposed to his job to learn how to control the urge to look. Which is exactly why you get men in their 20's, 30's, 50's etc who can't keep their eyes of certain body parts. Yeah I have the occasional naughty thought, but guess what? I can keep my eyes north of anything appealing in that way when I know such attention is inappropriate (such as not in a night club or when DH is walking around in his undies). It's called self control and it's a great thing to have.

Bugs the crap outta me. DD is not responsable for what the teen and adult men around her do. She is responsable for herself only.

The idea that teens in a physical relationship is always bad irks me too, but less so simply because there are people in every age group who are very much not mature enough to be in a physical relationship with someone.

In our house we are teaching DD to dress in a way that she is comfortable with. She is most comfortable with covering up at the moment, but if that changes we aren't going to beat ourselves up about it. Dh and I know that she is fully capable of telling a guy to growup if he can't look anywhere other then her chest or ass.

The one and only girl I had sex with dressed conservatively and she was younger then 15 when we did it. It was also her idea and involved more then just lust.
post #20 of 42
Well of course a girl in a bikini can become a stat. For unemployment. A few summers ago I did a day camp and there were a few days when we were supposed to take the kids swimming. The only suit I had was a bikini, but I've always been self conscience about my body so I always made sure everything was covered. Well I was young (in college) and the kids were middle schoolers. The leader was a substitute teacher for the school district so all the kids knew her, and didn't like her. Honestly, she was the stereotypical mean sub that no one likes. Anyhow, she went and complained to the woman in charge that I was hanging out of my suit and all the boys were looking, which was crap. Then she kept saying how I was doing this and doing that and eventually the woman in charge got fed up and fired me. The truth was, this leader couldn't handle the fact that the kids liked me better (because I was closer to their age) and probably didn't like I could actually wear a bikini and she couldn't. Ugh.

I really think this article is bogus and seems to be for the people who already believe such things, like how dancing is evil because it entices men and that showing any skin other than arms (no shoulders) is going to give men these feelings and they can't do anything about those feelings because they aren't married and therefore can't even be alone with a woman. It seems like it was written for those mothers so they can take it to their daughters and say "see, this is why we do xyz and you can't do abc".

Furthermore, I know plenty of girls who wore modest clothes and they were always the biggest sluts. I also knew plenty of girls who wore slutty clothes and never had sex in high school. So, agreeing with PPs, I think it's totally unfair to say slutty clothes means the girl is a slut.

Actually, I would say that the modestly dressed girls - even the religious girls - are having more sex and are bigger sluts than the girls wear tight jeans and belly shirts. Look at catholic school girls. Obviously they aren't all running around having oddles of sex with various people, but I knew plenty of guys in highshool who purposely dated girls from the catholic schools because they were easy. And they always seemed to have more pregnant girls in their high school than most of the other schools around. Even one of our local colleges has a bad rap. My father went a catholic co-ed college. It happened to be within 20 minutes of a then all girl catholic college. (they just allowed boys in for the 05-06 school year but the only dormatory they have is on the other side of campus and very few boys go there.) They actually used to call that school ImSMACKulata (pun on the school name) because all the girls were easy. I'm not saying it's right by any means, and maybe that too is just as bad as an assumption, but in my experience, it's the girls who dress "modestly" and go to church that have the most sex with the most people.

This is a bit of digression, but I wonder if this writers attitude has anything to do with halloween costumes. Did you see them this year? They had costumes for children - toddlers! - there were slutty enough that even I wouldn't wear them!! And I must admit, when I see them, I always think "and people wonder why we seem to glorify the idea of sexualizing young girls." I mean, really, is there a different between half those costumes and those disgusting pageants for 3 yos?
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