Friday, August 21, 2009

A Decade of Girls Named Brittney, Tiffany, Candy, and Paris


It's as if the new moms of the late nineties were using Las Vegas stripper advertisement magazines to choose their baby names: Lara Dawn, Astra, Zena, Sheera, Nitasha, Tawny, Starlette.... And now their little 12 year olds want to dress like sluts, and they wonder what's wrong.

When I was a kid my Mom bought all my clothing. I was never given money to go to the store and buy my own things until I was about 17. And whenever things got too tight or short, they went in the give-away box.

I remember one time when I was about 17, about 1984 I think, I came out of my bedroom dressed for church with some pretty big, wild, tousled hair. Looked kind of bed head-ish. My father happened to walk out of his bedroom at the same time, and he took one look at me, and told me to get back in front of that mirror and tame that hair down to a more decent look. That's so funny sounding now when I think about it, but I'm grateful he did keep me on somewhat of a leash when I was younger. I wasn't totally sheltered, but I was definitely given some boundaries and forbidden directions.

That's what I credit now for giving me the sense to know how to have fun and be a little crazy without ending up in jail or naked on the internet.

This article on John Stossel's blog make me glad I don't have kids.

Kids Getting Older Younger

My girl children would probably hate me, because I'd never let them dress like Paris or Brittney, and magazines like Cosmo Girl would never be allowed in my house. I'd be so strict that I'd probably end up causing the opposite effect eventually. But I see 12 and 14 year old girls in slutty clothing all the time now. It's sickening.

Wasn't sexualization of children considered to be one of the many things that contributed to the fall of the Roman Empire?

Add that to the other similarities in our government, and I'd say we're nearly there.

10 comments:

The Wine Commonsewer (TWC) said...

You are too young to remember the hot pants craze in the late 1970's when some junior high school girls were sent home from school because they weren't wearing underwear and the teachers could see girl's private parts on full display in the classroom.

And in my day the girls wore their skirts so short that I nearly failed Algebra because Patti Connolly sat next to me. Between the micro mini skirts and the braless see-thru tops I almost died of heart failure a million times before I was thirty and girls started putting on bras again. :-)

There is one very strange trend Lisa and I have noticed. Kids in smaller towns and outlying areas seem to be much more likely to do drugs, get in trouble, have tats, piercings, and to dress weird or outlandish. It is almost like you'd rather have your kids grow up in the city in California than some nice little small town where people perceive them to be away from all those bad influences.

Back to the post subject: That is not to deny that girls and women dress more casually and wear more revealing clothes today than they did in the 1940's. But that began a long time ago.

I don't disagree that what Stossel describes exists, but to whatever extent this trend exists it is limited to a much smaller number of girls than he thinks. 13 is NOT the new 20.

It appears to be more widespread than it is because those bad girls are exactly the ones who are unsupervised and spend their time at the mall showing off. The other girls are home doing their homework.

I know it's just anecdotal but my kids are in sixth and eighth grade and I don't see much evidence of a problem.

In fact, just this morning Katie told me that Gabrielle's dad took her out of the 6th grade honors program because he didn't want her around the junior high school boys. That is the more prevailing attitude among parents IMO.

Not so sure how high school will be. Then we may have a problem and I do worry about it. But you just have to be a parent.

Chatelaine said...

TWC, you and Lisa are good parents that are active and involved in their kids' lives. That makes all the difference. I think it was the same way with my parents.

The Wine Commonsewer (TWC) said...

Guess I got kinda wordy there. Thanks for the kind words, LC.

I'll tell you one thing that I think is crazy about some of these parents. They don't feed their kids.

Jake spent the night at Jared's a couple of weeks ago and they skateboarded to Burger King for breakfast where they scrounged enough change out of their pockets to buy a coke.

Picked him up from another kid's house one Sat afternoon. No breakfast no lunch.

Just two examples, but this seems widespread. And these parents are middle class homeowners where both parents have decent jobs, not crack ho's living on welfare.

WTH is up with this?

smartass sob said...

You are too young to remember the hot pants craze in the late 1970's

Early 1970's, TWC. My ma worked as a coctail waitress for a very little while; she had to wear them at work. Back in the 50's and 60's they had "short shorts."
♪♫ Who wears short shorts? She wears short shorts. ♪♫ Remember? ;-)

sasob

TWC said...

SA, unfortunately, I remember everything and it keeps reminding me of how got dam old I really am. :-)

Mrs TWC was talking about the girls at her Jr Hi that wore Dove shorts to school without underwear a little while ago.

brianp said...

Right on the money. That quality time you spend with your kids now will pay off in the end.
The Gray Cruise Ship Co. kept me away from home an awful lot, but when I was home, I spent every minute I could with #1 son.
Now that he is in the same boat, so to speak, he does the same with his offspring.
They do have the added advantage, a doting Gpa. :-) but it puts KK1 at double disadvantage when it comes to appearance, and later on Boys. :-)

Col. Hogan said...

I guess I'm lucky not to have had a daughter--though I occasionally miss the experience. Debbie and I had the opportunity to adopt a 4-year-old cute little red-haired girl back in San Diego. We were in the same hot rod club with the foster parents.

We finally decided against it because we thought we couldn't afford to care for her properly (and I didn't want to deal with the children's prisons again). It was an opportunity lost, perhaps for the best. I'd probably be in prison by now for beating a teacher to death or something. I almost did it with one of son Jim's teachers. It was close.

She'd be about 30 by now. Oh well.

Janie at Sounding Forth said...

I have boys and I am SOOOOO glad.

The Captain said...

Daughters have been the cause of my biggest heartaches, but also my greatest joys.

Sons are great, but there is nothing like being called daddy by a daughter. Or having a daughter give you a grandbaby.

Jennifer said...

I suspect a lot of these kids are just "imitating the grown-ups" without having the slightest idea what messages their clothing sends.

I remember a few years ago, some friends and I went to a restaurant with their then-two-year-old daughter. The little girl wore glasses, and so did I. It so happened that it was raining that day, so when we all sat in our booth the first thing I did was take a napkin out of the dispenser and wipe the waterspots off my glasses. Seeing this, the little girl promptly grabbed her own napkin and started rubbing it over her own glasses -- but of course, she ended up getting fingerprints all over her lenses and making an absolute mess, because she was simply imitating WHAT the grownup was doing, without having the slightest idea WHY.

I think a lot of the preteen oversexiness is similar.