Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Children and Modesty

I've been thinking about children recently. I don't have any, of course, but I do pray that one day I'll marry and have children.

Really, though, what's come to mind recently is that, not only do we need to, as parents, or even just adults in the world, need to set an example. Children learn by example, they want to imitate their parents, or their favorite aunt or uncle, a teacher. You get the point. :)

The whole world is oversexed, less (cloth) is more, etc. While I feel that children do need to be taught the 'facts of life' and the proper names for sex organs (this is for, God forbid, sexual abuse issues - if a child knows what a penis is, what a vagina is, then they don't need to resort to euphemisms, and can tell a parent or another adult when there is inappropriate touching and exactly what was happening). But they need to be taught these things in the proper way, not just exposed to nudity and sex and violence all mixed up together. However, it doesn't even stop there. Have you looked at kids clothes lately? They're mini versions of adult clothes, which aren't all that modest in the first place, and then, it seems like we think we can dress kids in even just a little bit less, because they're kids, and they don't know sex yet. And that's where we fail, in so many ways. They're kids, and they sure as hell *shouldn't* have any idea about sex in that respect, but they do, because we've allowed it to permeate everything in our society.

Because I'm a big believer in visual aids:

JonBenet Ramsey. I only use her picture because I'm wary of using just some random kids pic, in some of those pageant outfits. And this was one of the less sexualized pics I could find! Do I really need to explain what's wrong with this?

And a small variety of modest clothes for girls. A little Muslim, a little Amish, and just some others. Okay, the Victorian style dress might be a little much, but I thought it was pretty! :)

(Aren't they just *so cute*!)

(This is from a site called Biblical Garden)

(This & the next two are from Katie's Mercantile)

Also, because it's just an example of someone missing the point:

A skin tight t-shirt advocating Christian modesty. *headdesk*

So, if I have a point, I think it's this: We need to, not only set an example for our children of what is and is not acceptable in terms of dress and our actions, but we need to start them out from the beginning! You can't dress your kid up like a hooker and then expect them to dress modestly once puberty hits! They're going to be facing enough trouble in the world, why are we adding to it?


  1. As long as she lives under my roof my daughter will never wear shorts, short skirts, immodest bathing suits, strap-dresses, or anything that is tight. Not even when she is a baby or toddler or little girl!

    But I'm not going to just hammer it into her head, "You wear any o' that and you'll die young."

    I'm going to teach her about how modesty protects the dignity and nobility of women and brings them respect rather then sexual objectification etc. etc. I pray that she "gets it" and embraces modesty with all of her heart.

  2. Hey there ,popped over from Farm Hijab.

    How I hear you loud and clear on this. I really worry where it will all end and where these so called designers get off on making these clothes for children. it is sick

  3. I am ever hopeful that with the growing knowledge that the harm the suns rays can do to that not only will parents provide hats for their little ones, but long sleeved t-shirts and 'sun-suits' rather than 'bikini swim suits'..

    and a ton of sun cream - just as a back up measure.. :0D

  4. I am relieved not to have a girl, just so I don't have to say no to pageants and her penchant for Forever 21 clothing...

    This post also brings up a whole other post which is what happened to JonBenet? I know, I know, the parents are absolved...but I think they did it. Little known fact about the pineapple eaten around midnight and the wear inside which suggested previous sex abuse...

    Sorry for veering off-topic here sweetie. I hope that our future generation of girls will be different.

  5. Michelle,

    I agree. I don't feel that it's enough, for parents, to just tell kids, in a lot of things, to 'do this' with no explanation. It's more important to have them understand the reason behind things like this, so that it's something they'll embrace and carry with them into adulthood as opposed to rebelling.

  6. Slice of life,

    I do wonder, sometimes, about the designers of these clothes. Does it ever bother them at all, what they're doing to children? *sigh*

  7. Ahavah,

    Yes, if all else fails, we can always hope that growing understanding of the health concern will make parents cover their kids up.

  8. Lisa,

    I don't know that it's any easier having a boy. You still have to worry about how they dress, though I guess it might be easier to find appropriate clothing. However, you've also got to teach Youssef (in your case) that it's not appropriate to look at, touch, etc. girls, even as he gets older. Because you know he's going to get exposed to all this stuff.

    Also, not all girls *want* to be in pageants or dress like society wants them to. It's all in raising them properly. I personally have no preference in (my own hypothetical) kids. I'll take whoever comes. :)

    JonBenet...it's not all that off topic, really. I can't help but believe that, whatever happened, and I honestly don't think that we'll ever really know, the beauty pageants, sexualizing of her childhood had something to do with it.

  9. Very cute pictures of kids dressed modestly. I really like some of those dresses. I hate some kids clothes as you mentioned. Why do little girls have to look sexy? Even in our liberal society we don't approve of child molesters so why make little ones look like they are asking for sex? Sad.

  10. Amber,

    Raising a girl is really hard during the tween years, and boys are hard forever! The terrible twos, the teen years, and then if he ends up like husband...

    I can't wait to see your future babies!

  11. How could I agree any less? Good post! I am a teen, and modesty and the Lord come before everything else.
    May God bless you!

  12. I have a boy and two girls, and it never ceases to amaze me how many weak parents there are in our society, especially those who proclaim to be Christians.

    Although the designers are responsible for their actions as far as making clothes that sexualize children, it comes as no surprise that they do. Evil exist in the world, always has and always will. The fact that parents buy these clothes for their children is what is really sickening. The designers could not stay in business if people did not buy their clothes, and on a large scale at that!

    It is our position as Christian parents to filter out what our children are exposed to and teach them Godly principles. So many Christian parents, however, are so busy trying to keep the peace with society by not bucking the system that they let things go and will compromise their own child's soul in exchange for that peace. They feel the pressure to be modern and tolerant of many different lifestyles that they are setting a unGodly example for their children. We as Christian parents need not fold under the pressure of society, but stand strong as commanded by God. Sexualized clothes are a problem, but unfortunately it's not the only problem. Many parents are stumbling blocks for their children and each other as the result of their unGodly decisions, and as a reminder of what will befall a stumbling block, read Matthew 18:1-11.

    Blessings and may the peace of God be in your heart.

  13. I definitely agree. When you see a 10-year-old walking around in an outfit and makeup (!!!) that makes her look like a miniature 18-year-old, there's a problem. I've always hated that; children should be dressed like children, not "young adults".

    But don't forget the little boys, either! You know, the ones who walk around with their pants/shorts hanging off their backsides so that their boxers/underoos are showing. That's really gross, too.

  14. Heather,

    Forget 10yo running around dressed like skanks w/makeup. We used to have a 4yo whose mother worked here and the poor kid was all dolled up, wearing makeup. 4! *shakes head* Not my kids, I swear. Not ever.

    Oh, the boys are just as bad, they really are. *gag* I don't want to see that look on grown men either.


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