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The eroticization of children. - Page 4

post #61 of 155
I haven't read all the stuff, and can't get the article to work for me, but I think the way many parents let their little girls dress is horrid. I see 6 year olds in skirts that only reach about an inch past their crotch, words across their bottoms, tight tummy revealings shirts. There is no way on Earth my (possible future) little girl would EVER be allowed to wear such things. I'd like my little girls to look like little girls.

My sister is in middle school, and her sense of fashion is ridiculous. She doesn't dress skanky, she just looks stupid. But hey, what do I know. I was one that always beat to my own drum and didn't care what everyone else was wearing. I wore what I wanted. My sister, is uber trend conscience.
post #62 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post
I'm not talking about middle school or high school girls. I'm talking about little kids being dressed up like streetwalkers. It's not necessary. I think it's unhealthy. I don't understand why anybody does it.
Do you have any links or images that can show the kinds of toddler clothes you find inappropriate? No snark at all, I am just curious because I am not sure I've seen any toddler clothes I found to be too sexy.
post #63 of 155
Dechen where have you been all my life?? great points, all.




i love Bratz (anyone who has followed me around MDC already knows this ) and my dd has several bratz dolls. yes, she is a toddler.

i also let her play with makeup ~ i made her own little makeup bag (most of which got dumped out as she was "mixing" them ) and she loves spending hours (or, ok, at least *minutes*) in front of the mirror putting on makeup. (on her legs. )

she also has a shirt that says "Princess" that she loves and is currently a little too big for her, but i'm sure she loves it enough that she'll keep wearing it as she gets older.

she has a mini skirt that i let her wear constantly over the summer, and i caught major flak from other parents at my ds's school about letting my toddler run around in a mini skirt. but it was CUTE and it matched her princess shirt, and gosh darnit i think if anyone is going to think "bad" thoughts about a baby they're going to do it no matter what the kid is wearing. arggh when she got big enough that i could easily see her diaper under it i did make her stop wearing it though ~ because when she's older i'll make her wear things that conceal her undergarments too. *i* wear things that conceal my undergarments ~ even though i love my mini skirts.



the talent show described in the article seemed extremely .... uh .... *extreme.* just, really inappropriate for girls that age.

i think it's ok to let a 13 year old go to school in glitter and a mini skirt ... but gyrate on a stage for a crowd????!!!! NO. WAY.
post #64 of 155
StormBride,

When I was in 2nd grade, I remember a girl wearing a bra (!) so that she could let the strap show. Something about Madonna? And those white lace gloves? (I thought it was pretty dumb). Definately the same phenomena - young girls dressing in what older generations considered risque clothing. I'm not saying you need to approve, but this *is* an issue that every generation deals with. There is nothing new going on here.

Look, I hate the message that women (and girls) are only good for sex. But part of how we move beyond that disgusting idea is to stop pasting labels on other women (and girls) who dress in so-called "sexy" clothing. You wear these clothes, you wear those clothes, whatever. Your identity transcends what you wear. Your worth, intelligence, and compasion have nothing to do with what costume you choose to cover up with. I'm not going to perpetuate the sexualization of women by using such terms as "prostitot" and forcing adult interpretations upon childish desires to do what is trendy. I find the term "prostitot" far more apalling than any fashion trend.
post #65 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnschoolnMa View Post
Do you have any links or images that can show the kinds of toddler clothes you find inappropriate? No snark at all, I am just curious because I am not sure I've seen any toddler clothes I found to be too sexy.
I don't have any links or images. But, the particular outfit I've been thinking of it one I saw at a store last winter. It was a leopard-print fake fur jacket in a streetwalker style (I don't know what else to call it - it was exactly like the cliche one that the hookers wore in 80s shows). It came with a little skinny strap purse with fur trim, a little camisole-type black shirt with lace around the v-neck and a pair of tight leopard-print shorts. I can see a little girl liking it...but I can't understand why someone would even design such a thing for a little girl. This was in size 3 and 4.
post #66 of 155
I am far more worried about what "adult" type clothing is saying to my daughter about herself than I am worried about what other people will think. I'm concerned that she, like many girls in our culture, will feel intense pressure as she grows up to be "eye candy" for her male peers. "Reviving Ophelia" and "The Beauty Myth" come to mind as classic books that still have a lot of resonance, on this topic.

This isn't an issue of teen rebellion and "girls wearing stuff the old fart generation thinks is too risque" or whatever, clearly, if it's being sold to kids far, far below the age at which "teen rebellion" generally sets in. This is an extension of the commercialization of childhood. This is not about 14 year olds dyeing their hair odd colors and wearing "outrageous" fashions to get a reaction. It's a cooptation of that idea and it's not being sold to girls so much as it is to their parents and everyone else. "You're a rebel, buy your daughter a bratz doll, they're cooler than barbies because they have ATTITUDE and attitude equals dressing skimpily and sulking!"
post #67 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dechen View Post
StormBride,

When I was in 2nd grade, I remember a girl wearing a bra (!) so that she could let the strap show. Something about Madonna? And those white lace gloves? (I thought it was pretty dumb). Definately the same phenomena - young girls dressing in what older generations considered risque clothing. I'm not saying you need to approve, but this *is* an issue that every generation deals with. There is nothing new going on here.
I'm sorry, but I disagree. Perhaps this was happening when Madonna was first trendy...but I don't remember any of the little girls I knew (I was born in '68) wearing adult fashions that were considered risque. I do think this is a relatively new phenomenon.

Quote:
Look, I hate the message that women (and girls) are only good for sex. But part of how we move beyond that disgusting idea is to stop pasting labels on other women (and girls) who dress in so-called "sexy" clothing. You wear these clothes, you wear those clothes, whatever. Your identity transcends what you wear. Your worth, intelligence, and compasion have nothing to do with what costume you choose to cover up with. I'm not going to perpetuate the sexualization of women by using such terms as "prostitot" and forcing adult interpretations upon childish desires to do what is trendy. I find the term "prostitot" far more apalling than any fashion trend.
I'm not going to label the child at all. But, I don't understand designing this kind of stuff for little kids. I don't understand letting little kids wear it. (And, even second grade is older than what I'm talking about.) I can certainly understand why people use the term "prostitot" to describe these fashions..although I dislike it, as it sounds like a judgment on the child. My issue isn't with little girls who want to wear the "pretty" stuff at the mall. My issue is with anybody thinking it's appropriate to design clothes for preschoolers that are derived from very adult and sexy fashions.
post #68 of 155
There are definitely different kinds of miniskirts (or whatever) being marketed toward toddlers. Some are very adult looking (just smaller) and some are just cute. The difference is obvious. My dd was given a hand-me-down bathing suit. Bikini actually. The bottoms were big enough to cover the diaper, the top was pretty much just strings with a little triangle to cover each "breast" with a flower where the nipple would be. The size? 3 MONTHS! Um, a 3 month old doesn't really need a bikini top, what exactly should she be covering? And nipple covering flowers? Sick. Marketing bikinis for babies is just a little weird anyway. Casting her into some sort of role at an age when she is so precious and innocent. It just felt dirty or something

I tend to opt for clothes for my kids that are comfortable and easy to wear. Harder to climb in a dress, though sometimes I put her in a short dress with pants underneath. Cute, not "sexy". And she can move around easily....into the mud of course. She is a baby (now 20 months) and I hate how limited we are already. Everything is either over marketed (disney princesses, Dora, or whatever) or too grown up in style. She should be running, climbing, and learning about her world, not a fashion accessory!

At 8, 10, or even 13 she shouldn't be a consumer. We don't have a tv and I am thankful that my kids aren't exposed to the ads and videos that sell them on what they "should" be like. The difference between kids who have this exposure and kids who don't is astounding to me. I never expected it. I don't want my kids to be every marketing executive's dream. Young, impressionable, and willing to spend on the latest trends. I have no problem with them discovering the world (even the sexual parts) on their own, and on their own terms. I don't want them discovering it because it is pushed on them by society at ridiculously young ages. I owe them more than that
post #69 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeRangeMama View Post
At 8, 10, or even 13 she shouldn't be a consumer. We don't have a tv and I am thankful that my kids aren't exposed to the ads and videos that sell them on what they "should" be like. The difference between kids who have this exposure and kids who don't is astounding to me. I never expected it. I don't want my kids to be every marketing executive's dream. Young, impressionable, and willing to spend on the latest trends.

I disagree that a kid shouldn't be a consumer. Perhaps I feel that way because my kids have money (well, sometimes) of their own to spend. Or because we make many purchasing decisions as a family. We definitely talk about advertising gimmicks and marketing techniques, mindless vs thoughtful consumer, etc. I think 8 is just fine for that kind of thing.
post #70 of 155
Perhaps I should have worded it as "shouldn't be a target for advertisers" or something Its late and I am tired....

I have read so much in the last few years about how marketers are targeting younger and younger children. They have more "disposable income". I want my kids to be thoughtful consumers, not just buying mindlessly what tv sells to them. At 3 and 5 my kids already get money they can spend how they choose and we talk about what they want to buy and where. They have learned that they can buy a nicer toy at the thrift store then they can for the same price at the discount store (for example).

I have a problem with how pervasive brands, advertising, and target marketing has become with the younger crowds, NOT with them being consumers. Already my ds' 4 and 5 year old friends discuss BRANDS of things and movies and celebrities. Its too young!
post #71 of 155
I haven't read all the replies yet, so I don't know if this has been mentioned. But I believe this starts way, way younger than middle school. My husband and I have already "banned" any clothing for our kids that has writing on the butt... and you find it already in 0-3 MONTH sizes. We've seen it all over the place the last few years here in older kids (like 6-10 year olds) and we call it pedofile bumper stickers.

I don't care if it IS a brand name, there's something that makes me physically ill about seeing a 4 year old girl walking through the airport with her dad with "Juicy" written across her butt!
post #72 of 155
No, I totally get the miniskirt thing... the thing is, they ARE skirts fashioned like an adults, but cut longer. I'll have to see if I have a pic...
http://viewmorepics.myspace.com/inde...eID=1370131967
ok this is Halloween, dd on the left. Those are her "normal" day to day clothes (well, aside from the fact that I painted the skirt and tights).. she went as a punk rocker. But, like I said, for the most part, she lives in jeans.

As far as writing on the butt, that's a big no-no. Last year at target, I saw booty shorts in the Toddler department that had "Jail Bait" written across the rear. ?!
post #73 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by BelgianSheepDog View Post
I am far more worried about what "adult" type clothing is saying to my daughter about herself than I am worried about what other people will think. I'm concerned that she, like many girls in our culture, will feel intense pressure as she grows up to be "eye candy" for her male peers. "Reviving Ophelia" and "The Beauty Myth" come to mind as classic books that still have a lot of resonance, on this topic.

This isn't an issue of teen rebellion and "girls wearing stuff the old fart generation thinks is too risque" or whatever, clearly, if it's being sold to kids far, far below the age at which "teen rebellion" generally sets in. This is an extension of the commercialization of childhood. This is not about 14 year olds dyeing their hair odd colors and wearing "outrageous" fashions to get a reaction. It's a cooptation of that idea and it's not being sold to girls so much as it is to their parents and everyone else. "You're a rebel, buy your daughter a bratz doll, they're cooler than barbies because they have ATTITUDE and attitude equals dressing skimpily and sulking!"
Perfectly written. That's exactly my problem with it. Marketers have been trying to make rebellion profitable for ages. This is just the current form of it.
post #74 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeRangeMama View Post
I have a problem with how pervasive brands, advertising, and target marketing has become with the younger crowds, NOT with them being consumers. Already my ds' 4 and 5 year old friends discuss BRANDS of things and movies and celebrities. Its too young!

I know that around here "upscale" brands are very big, But ZERO of it comes from advertising to kids or even marketing to them.

Instead its done through some viral marketing to adults that tends to filter down here. The big brands are "True Religion" Jeans, "Juicy" Clothing, "Junk Food" shirts (here is my 13 y.o. dd's current favorite...http://www.80stees.com/products/Kiss...rmal-Shirt.asp)

Even the "big" toys have NEVER been advertised and instead are word of mouth phenomenoms like "Webkinz" www.webkinz.com
post #75 of 155
This thread has really got me thinking.

We live/hang out in a sort of "alternative" environment. A lot of heavy metal/rock musicians, tattoo artists, performers etc. Plus alternative spirituality.

So ds hangs out at a lot of drum circles, pubs, performance spaces, local festivals and coffee houses etc. Lots of people with piercings, tattoos.. and.. fetish clothes. Yep. Lots of girls in lots of leather and fishnets. Now I imagine this does influence his ideas of gender and beauty, inevitably, and I have mixed feelings about it.

Because while many of these women are very powerful and smart and wonderful.. they do perpetuate a certain image of women. And while my community does challenge so many mainstream assumptions.. people DO buy right into the mainstream standards of beauty/sexuality. They just take the standard and cover it with piercings or tattoos, kwim? And it is VERY sexualized. And I have actually had some pretty heated discussions with some of my friends about it.. being that I am older and overweight and don't meet those standards.. I have said outright that for people who reject the mainstream.. they still totally objectify women. And buy into really limiting ideals of beauty/sexuality. And the women really buy into it.

Now many of us have kids... but when I think of it, they are mostly boys. I don't know how the leather babes dress their little girls.. we just all seem to have boys. And I love my friends and my world but I do worry sometimes about what messages ds is taking in.

We don't have a TV, we don't bring crappy magazines in the house, we are careful, though not extreme, about commericalization and consumption. We send DS to a preschool that is equally careful.

But what is he learning from our community? That all women are tattooed bondage babes?

(on the other hand I just bought him an awesome shirt that says "anarchy in the pre-K" LOL.

I guess this is slightly OT, but I think the way young girls dress is part and parcel of it. What's the message of the clothes? And what is the beholder supposed to think? What does wearing the clothes do to the young girls?

Very complicated and difficult issue, I think.

Then again, I dressed like a gypsy goth all through my teens. Black goop everywhere, silver skulls, thrift-store kimonos. And everyone worried. And I turned out okay. For the most part.
post #76 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by aywilkes View Post
Why do little girls need to have on halter tops that show the belly?
Because, if it were more appropriate, my little girl would be completely topless to stay cool in the summer!
post #77 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by teachma View Post
Because, if it were more appropriate, my little girl would be completely topless to stay cool in the summer!
I honestly think it is more apropriate for a very young girl to be topless than to be wearing a short halter top that bares her belly. A topless little girl looks like a little girl, a little girl in a short halter top looks like a mini teenager.
post #78 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jilian View Post
I honestly think it is more apropriate for a very young girl to be topless than to be wearing a short halter top that bares her belly. A topless little girl looks like a little girl, a little girl in a short halter top looks like a mini teenager.
Just FYI, teenagers no longer wear short halter tops or anything else that is belly bearing (except a swim suit). At least not "trendy" ones.

The newest trend is loooooooooooooooooong folks. Your shirts don't just not show your midrif, they come down to the mid-thigh!
http://shop.nordstrom.com/S/2921803/...bo=2381660&P=1
http://www.abercrombiekids.com/webap...84127_-1_12155.
http://www.limitedtoo.com/detail/3361361#
They are tight fitting though.
post #79 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by maya44 View Post
Just FYI, teenagers no longer wear short halter tops or anything else that is belly bearing (except a swim suit). At least not "trendy" ones.

The newest trend is loooooooooooooooooong folks. Your shirts don't just not show your midrif, they come down to the mid-thigh!
http://shop.nordstrom.com/S/2921803/...bo=2381660&P=1
http://www.abercrombiekids.com/webap...84127_-1_12155.
http://www.limitedtoo.com/detail/3361361#
They are tight fitting though.
Teenagers that I see on a regular basis still wear shirts showing their midriff or belly - and in December too! At least in the DC metro and Chicagoland areas.
post #80 of 155
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redifer View Post
No, I totally get the miniskirt thing... the thing is, they ARE skirts fashioned like an adults, but cut longer. I'll have to see if I have a pic...
http://viewmorepics.myspace.com/inde...eID=1370131967
ok this is Halloween, dd on the left.
That outfit is soooo cute!
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