‘Sexy’ Pressure for Girls at Halloween – an Article Primarily for Dads
The concept of ‘sexy pressure’ for girls at Halloween had never crossed my mind before my wife sent me a NY Times “parent blog” article – here it is – but now it’s resonating with me. Makes me think about 10 years from now… what’s life going to be like for our little ones? (Please read the article so that you understand what I’m talking about. And not, I certainly don’t prescribe to what the author of the article is saying, but simply bringing it up as a point of discussion.) I’m a father of 3 daughters, and although they are young, I’m aware of the pending pressure that’s coming – but apparently not aware enough.
In the article, you can sense that the pressure on girls comes mostly from other girls. They didn’t talk about whether or not the guys thought they were ‘too sexy’, but the pressure stemmed almost exclusively from what the other girls perceived. (I assert, too, that the pressure they feel isn’t so much real as it is only a perception, and the one quote shows that, when she says, essentially, “it’s not discussed but everyone knows it.”) I’ve always found this to be true; the guys aren’t aware enough, most of the time, or don’t care enough, to make a big deal out of girl’s clothing. Although there is that aspect when a girl is dressed in a “slutty” manner (per the article) when guys notice and begin to pay attention to her. This is age-old.
What’s the big deal here? Isn’t this just adolescent development, trial-and-error, and growing pains? No, I don’t think so. It’s a big deal because of the culture around our kids. They see particular things online, on TV, in movies, in music videos, etc. and whatever is “it” MUST be emulated. At least in their minds. Whatever’s hip, cool, newest, biggest, baddest, and those things that push the moral lines, is what is desired. Again, this is age-old. The shiny thing that grabs attention is what becomes so sought after. So, with our young women, and this idea of “dressing sexy for Halloween”, what do we do? Fathers… where are you?
Here’s what we do. I’ve written about this before, I speak about this all the time, I teach my kids in class this concept in all we do. It’s not a new concept… it too is age-old. We teach our kids that they are intrinsically good and that God loves them, and that we love them. We instill in them a self-worth that is so strong that it can stand up against any cultural phenomenon, any peer pressure, any moral dilemma and come out victorious. Without this self-worth, without this knowledge that they have a dignity that is deserving of only the greatest, they will fall into the pressure of the world to find their happiness, self-worth, and coolness factor from other things. In the end, those other things won’t bring happiness, only emptiness.
Fathers: if you’re not the most loving, caring, compassionate, uplifting source of goodness in your daughter’s life, then why not?! She needs your attention, your affection, your love, your discipline, your care, your concern. NEEDS it like she needs water, food, oxygen, and shelter. An absolute necessity. If you’ve failed her in this area up to this point, work to fix your mistakes. You’ve got 10 days before Halloween, it’s not too late. And let’s be real, Halloween isn’t the issue, but it certainly accentuates the issue.