How old is too old for a girl to go shirtless? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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Old 04-19-2014, 06:52 PM
 
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I probably would say about 3 or 4, but I rarely even let DS go out in public without a shirt. At the beach and pools he always has a UV shirt on because its easier than slathering him with sunblock.

However, if I have girls, I probably won't let them ever go shirtless in public. They will most likely wear Uv shirts at the beach, too. I live overseas in Latin America and sexual abuse is rampant in the city we are currently in. I would hesitate to let a girl of mine who is even 2 or 3 years old go shirtless anywhere because of this. You start thinking different, almost paranoid, when you know some girls who are 7 and 8 being sexually abused. I see girls up to probably age 6 or 8 go shirtless here, and walk around at the store in just their underwear until age 3 or 4. I know that sometimes its a sign of the girl beign abused, sometimes its just because its hot out.

Its obviously different in the US (and I would imagine Europe, but I haven't been there) so that's why I would say 3 or 4 would be ok there.
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Old 04-19-2014, 08:03 PM
 
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I don't feel uncomfortable yet when my 7 year old doesn't wear a top, but I'm guessing it will only be a year or two a she is getting more modest.
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Old 04-19-2014, 08:47 PM
 
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I think my main concern would be that being shirtless past baby age would potentially attract the attention of some pervert. Maybe I've watched too much TV. :/ Also, I only have a baby son (8 months) so I'm not really basing that on any experience. There are lots of creeps out there and I'd rather not bring any extra attention
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Old 04-20-2014, 02:01 PM
 
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You don't want to put your kids at risk, you want to protect them, but at the same time- the way we teach women to live in fear and be ashamed of their bodies is pretty awful. I think most girls do automatically reach a point where they aren't comfortable being topless, which is sad, but it does offer protection. I don't know how to handle a kid who really wants to be allowed to go topless even after the point where it'll garner bad attention. As long as it's legal, I'd love to be able to say "Go for it, it's your body, own your skin and embrace the feel of the sun on your breasts", but there is risk in it. Even explaining the risks, at what age are kids truly old enough to recognize the risks and make that decision for themselves?

 

I don't agree with making kids into political statements, I don't think it's okay to encourage a child to be topless when they don't want to be, I'm not sure how to handle it when the kid wants to make themself a political statement. Most really aren't able to handle that level of rebellion. Rebelling against curfew is one thing. Rebelling against deeply held societal beliefs is another!

 

Mostly, it's just sad that this is even a question. It's sad that women have to worry about whether their freaking hairstyle will make them the target of rape, that they have to go to extreme lengths to feel safe. It's sad that kids can't just be kids.

 

Inside the house, just family- yeah, no age limit. It's a lot cheaper to go shirtless than it is to crank up the AC. I don't even know if I'd say there's an age limit on nakedness.  If one sibling is getting uncomfortable with another being naked, then that'd have to be sorted out (maybe switch to "nakedness in your room only", provided they don't share a room). Unless the naked sibling is still not potty trained and the nakedness is part of potty training. At that point: get over it.


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Old 04-21-2014, 09:23 AM
 
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Originally Posted by sillysapling View Post
 

 

I don't agree with making kids into political statements, I don't think it's okay to encourage a child to be topless when they don't want to be

II dont  think anyone here has suggested that, where did you get that idea?

You pass on your own views of shame/nakedness if you believe its a problem. Ive observed that children  go  through a phase where they desire privacy anyway.

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Old 04-21-2014, 03:52 PM
 
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II dont  think anyone here has suggested that, where did you get that idea?

You pass on your own views of shame/nakedness if you believe its a problem. Ive observed that children  go  through a phase where they desire privacy anyway.


Where did I say anyone else had suggested that? I didn't.

 

And privacy doesn't mean clothes. There are people who are really inclined towards partial/total nudity who only go along with clothes due to societal pressure. I do think a lot of kids hit an awkward stage when puberty begins of wanting to cover up, but not all do.


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Old 05-11-2014, 01:59 PM
 
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I say that if your daughter wants to go topless in the USA you should make the space for her to do so: hiking/camping, privacy of home, among like-minded friends. Topless is totally OK for women in many places in the world. If she must have a top, please explain to her that it's for her own security in THIS culture (not every culture).

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