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Younger moms -- what is your opinion of these two t-shirts for a 13-year-old girl? - Page 2

post #21 of 73

I would not take the words "Bite Me" on the front of this T-shirt as referencing the breasts.  I would think that it meant Bite Me in general, as a provoking statement, like I don't care leave me alone. And the fact that it was a vampire is what the twist would be.  The twist or joke would not be that it is referencing the breasts.  Because then that would be two twists- the vampire thing and the breast thing.  And that is just too much for a T-shirt to take on at one time!

 

I guess it could come from a sort of sexual place if one sees vampire biting as a sexual thing. 

post #22 of 73

I can't say I am a younger mom or why you think they might have expertise on this topic. But I do think they are filled with sexual innuendo and inappropriate for a 13 year old. And I wouldn't allow my daughter to wear them. I don't know that your daughter would see that in them but I do think that is how they were intended to be read.

post #23 of 73

I agree that there is innuendo there, not because it's on the breasts (like others pointed out, that's the location for most words on t-shirts--consider a totally innocent college t-shirt), but because of the nature of the messages. I would also be willing to bet that your daughter knows very well that there is innuendo in the shirts. Though if you think she really has no idea it might be worth discussing, but showing respect for her choice about what to wear. I wouldn't worry too much about what other parents think. If they don't know now what teenagers are like, they'll know eventually.

post #24 of 73

Each time i read a post, i agree with it, even though it contradicts the one i just read and agreed with  :-)

 

Not younger mom here...

 

My first reaction is revulsion-the idea of a 13 year old inviting random strangers to 'bite her nipples'

My 2nd reaction,... its just a phrase, on the front of a teeshirt, who cares? At 13 i wouldnt have cared one way or the other. I certainly wouldnt have wanted to incite boys to 'bite me there', in fact i went out of my way to avoid attention in that area. Im the same now. I remember a game at that age called the 'frigid test' where  boys got to poke your breasts and vulva, and if you didnt let them, you were frigid.  ( i dont even know how to spell it, since i dont think its a real word)

 

However, thinking about it, i think its innocent enough-let her know, in case it hasnt occurred to her, that the phrase may be construed as referring to her nipples. On the other hand, not necessarily. 

 

I wouldnt make a big deal out of it, or ban it.  

 

Ambivalent response i guess....

post #25 of 73
I'm 32 so not so young anymore but my DD has started showing an interest in shirts that raise my eyebrows and I have dealt with it by keeping an open dialogue about why she wants the clothes. Right now it is because people in magazines and on movies wear them. When it changes we will take the Planned Parenthood sex ed class (the puberty one was very good).

I do also talk to my DD about some of the societal reactions will be, especially as it pertains to teachers and school. I don't believe that forbidding clothes does any good though. The few things my mom forbade me to wear were the ones I wanted the most and snuck. I see that same personality with my DD, she really tries to push the school rule on tank tops with no success, and that isn't something I view as productive.
post #26 of 73
Thread Starter 

I just realized that there had been some more responses that I wasn't notified about in my email.

 

I really think you all have made some valid points.

 

I still feel good about my decision to share with dd about any concerns I may have about her clothing, and then trust her to use her own judgment.

 

I think she's right that anyone who really knows her will see the "bite me" message as a statement that she "loves vampires and wants to be one." Literally everyone knows about her passion for vampire stories.

 

If she gets any undesired attention while wearing the shirts, this may cause her to rethink wearing them.

 

I do agree with the poster who found it interesting that the younger moms tended to be more likely than the older moms to see one or both messages as sexual. I think that I, as an older mom, may be somewhat out of touch with the feeling that men all around me are looking at me lustfully. At 49, I tend to feel like no one's all that interested in my bod. I do vaguely remember a time when it seemed like I couldn't go for a walk without receiving at least one male comment of a sexual or romantic nature.

 

These days, I tend to see myself as a person, first and foremost. My sexuality is part of who I am -- but it's just part of the whole, not a huge thing in and of itself. I suppose this could be perceived as me being out of touch with our sexualized youth culture -- or it could be perceived as our sexualized youth culture being out of touch with our shared humanity, and with the idea of our sexuality being interwoven into a larger context.

 

While I think many younger women are aware of themselves as whole and complex people, they continually have to deal with the stares and comments of men who like to fantasize about women just being sexual playthings. As we get older, we become increasingly free from all that, which helps us to get into better touch with who we really are. So to some extent, there is always going to be a gap between younger and older women, because we receive such different kinds of feedback from our surrounding cultures.

post #27 of 73

I think they are heavy with sexual connotations. My kid is four, so I'm not sure how we will handle that sort of thing.

post #28 of 73

I'm more bothered that "bite me" is a rude thing to say, and I find unprovoked rudeness on bumper stickers/t-shirts somewhere between unnecessary and aggressive. 

 

I may be the odd one, though.

post #29 of 73

I'm 25, and while I would definitely want to talk to my child about the possible implications of these messages just like OP did, ultimately, it's her body and her sexual agency to do with as she wishes.

 

I think that objecting/restricting treads too close to slut shaming and/or victim blaming.  If she can make an informed choice, then it's hers to make.

post #30 of 73

I'm definitely not a young mom, but I think they are OK.  For me it also depends on the child & why she wants them.  I would use it to open a conversation ask her why she likes them?  what do those sayings mean to her?  what kind of reaction is she expecting & warn her about the type of reaction she might get & what they might mean to others who see them.  Who knows she might decide not to wear them herself except only around friends or at home.

post #31 of 73

25 year old momma here... It is a tough situation.  Not too too long ago I was that 13 year old pushing boundaries (often unwittingly), and I'm soooo glad my mom would share her wisdom with me and usually keep me from wearing "grey area" things.  I would sometimes be upset in the moment, but a few years gives a lot of perspective, and I appreciated her honesty and willingness to "be the mom" even when it meant she may not be my favorite person for a few days.  She would always discuss WHY she was making that decision, talk to me like an adult, and that really helped, especially once I was 18 and out of the house and making my own decisions.

 

Sooo.. I guess I would say no, I wouldn't let my daughter wear these shirts (though I think reimbursing her is a neat idea).  They are definitely more flirtatious/sexual than I would be comfortable with her wearing, especially a 13 year old. No, you don't always want her constantly seeing herself in third person, but like it or not, what we wear DOES affect how people see us, and I'd rather know what people may think about me if I wear a certain thing and make sure I'm projecting the image I want to project.

post #32 of 73
Full disclosure: I am in my mid to late 30s but I have an adult child as well as a preteen.


I would say NO to both shirts. Way too suggestive. I would explain why they are inappropriate, reimburse what the child spent, and not for one second consider abdicating my parental authority under the premise of letting a 13 child decide what is and is not sexually suggestive.
post #33 of 73
I'm not buying that "bite me" is sexual at all. That's just not how it is used. "wink" isn't sexual either. The reasoning that some boys will think of sex is lame, because that is also used to keep women veiled, from going swimming with boys, and all sorts of things.

I think the most important things in the situation are teaching the daughter to think things through and make her own choices, and building a relationship of mutual respect between mom and daughter. Because the t shirts don't actually matter and will not have an impact on the daughter.

Right now, mom and daughter don't sound like they have a foundation for saying what the both think, and then disagreeing and moving forward. The teen years are about independence and life skills, and if we as mothers waste those years telling our kids what they can and cant do and micromanaging their choices, then we arent preparing them for life on their own.

I think the daughter should get to decide if she wears the shirts (though I do think it's fine to explain that they aren't appropriate for church). But only if mom can really let it go. But my basic bent is that it is always better to figure things out for one's self than to have everything controlled.

Im nearly 48, and have daughters who are 15 and 16. They wear a lot of ironic tee shirts and shirts for various sci
post #34 of 73
double post
Edited by Linda on the move - 7/8/13 at 10:19am
post #35 of 73

44yo--not a younger mom (was there an expectation that they would be more "in touch" than older moms and therefore a better lense through which to view this issue?)  This has been an interesting thread.  My oldest daughter is 8.5, and I'm starting to pay more attention to these issues.

 

What would happen if she did wear those?  I never had shirts like that, never wore "suggestive" clothes that I was aware of (in fact I tended to wear baggy clothes and was chided by my mother to "show your figure").  I still had plenty of comments, even at 13, from both school kids and the occasional creepy adult.  I doubt that a t-shirt is going to change that.  And I doubt that a tshirt or lack of is going to promote or prevent the kind of serious attention that we dread.  

 

I agree with the pp that it would be more important for me to have my daughter not exist in the third person and these shirts seem fairly innocuous.

post #36 of 73
Nothing will happen if she wears the shirts , but if mom doesn't let her wear the shirts she will be teaching her that the possibility of the disapproval of the church ladies is more important to the mother than what the daughter wants for herself. Isn't one of the values we want to teach our teens is to NOT make decisions based on peer pressure? Isn't teaching our kids to think for themselves more important than teaching them that appearance is the highest value?

The shirts don't matter.

Btw - bite me means "I don't care what you think."
post #37 of 73

"Wink wink" reminds me of the Monty Python ridiculous skit where the smarmy guy repeats 'nudge, nudge, wink, wink, know what I mean?', which was mildly sexual.  Isn't winking a flirty thing to do?  Probably more to the point, there's a 'wink' for each breast. 

 

Vampires are most definitely sexual. Getting over analytical here, putting aside Vlad the Impaler's story, think about Bram Stoker's Dracula, Ann Rice's vampires, and for pity's sake Edward Cullen and Bella -it's all sexual. 

 

Quote:
Each time i read a post, i agree with it, even though it contradicts the one i just read and agreed with

 

Ha! Me too. 

 

It infuriates me that girls and women have to curb their sexuality, or worry about how their bodies make men feel.  But at age 18 my daughter is much better prepared to cope with/enjoy whatever attention might come her way, while at age 13 I'd pretty concerned. I think letting your daughter know that the t-shirts can be considered sexual is wise. 

 

BTW, I'm 45 y.o.


Edited by journeymom - 7/6/13 at 2:25pm
post #38 of 73

I teach 10th grade; I once had a male student come to school with a belt buckle that said "Go down"- complete with arrow. He knew it was inappropriate for school and when told to take the belt off, he did so with smirk. He just wanted to see what he could get away with.

post #39 of 73

I think for moms (not necessarily the moms here) there are 2 issues at least.  One: preventing unwanted attention because it can be at best unpleasant, at worst, devastating, and certainly inappropriate for a 13yo.  Suggestive clothes represent to us the advertisement that one is ready and accepting of that kind of attention.  And 2) to prevent daughters from becoming the kind of girl that wants that kind of attention.  I don't think many parents will admit it, but I think the fear of one's daughter becoming the "slut" rather than the victim is no small part of their battle, albeit subconsciously.


Edited by SweetSilver - 7/5/13 at 1:56pm
post #40 of 73

I realize that the OP may have made her decision already but I read the whole post, so I am responding anyway ;)

 

I am what I would consider a young mom, 32, but others might not.

 

I certainly wouldn't like my kiddo wearing either of the shirts and I have several reasons.  One, I do think the wink wink* shirt is sexually suggestive.....if not then what is it winking about?  Naughtiness of some kind?  Then I don't condone that, either. 

The 'bite me' one, like another poster pointed out, is just kind of rude.

I personally think 13 is just on the cusp of these kind of issues.  I would want to hold out as long as I could.  And if my little one couldn't make a choice that seems appropriate to me then I would make it for her.  There are TONS of other options for girls her age in tops than sexualized or rude.

 

But just my 2 cents.

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