Friday, April 26, 2013

Dear Mothers of Daughters,

As you shop for your daughters, trying on bathing suits and shorts and tanks and all that is fun, colorful, and cool when the weather is hot, I have something I would like you to consider.

Your daughters, whether approaching the teen years or firmly entrenched in them, are beautiful.  Our sons notice them and appreciate all that is sweet and beautiful about your girls, as they should.  But our boys are also struggling.

You see, these boys are visual.  We are working very hard to shield them from images of women plastered on billboards and blown up 3-times lifesize in the windows of Victorias Secret.  When we are in the check-out line at Kroger, my daughters flip Cosmopolitan Magazine around to protect their brothers eyes and hearts.  Why?  Our boys want purity, and try really hard to pursue it.  When we walk by the above-mentioned images, they actually turn their heads because they feel the stirring inside their bellies and know it is not something to be fed, lest it emerge with teeth and claws.  Thirteen is a hard age on so many levels.  Mothers of girls, I write this as a mother of three girls myself.  I know what it is to see your little girl's athletic body and wish it was yours.  I know they are incredibly cute in those short shorts and string bikinis.  But when your little girl puts it on and walks up to my son, he does not see your little girl.

He sees boobs.

Is that what you want?  Do you want your daughters to be sexualized, to be lumped into the category of women on the billboards or in the centerfolds of magazines?  Do you want them to be appreciated for their bodies or for who they really are?  Because when your daughter does the splits on the beach in her bikini, my son will forget her name.

Modesty is not for wimps.  Modesty takes strength in a world where women are objects and men the devourers of the feast.  We work hard to teach our sons to respect women, to understand that God has called them to be valiant warriors and protectors of the women in their lives.  But every time your daughter's half-naked photo pops up on my computer I cringe, for I cannot put blinders on my sons.

Shopping for girls is hard, I know.  Remember, I have three of them.  But, mamas, we MUST fight for our daughters.  We must not succumb to what the world says is cute and allow our daughters to be sexualized or objectified.  If we want our daughters to believe they are God's precious jewels, princesses in the Kingdom of Heaven, then we must treat them as such.  Dress them cute.  Have fun.  But remember that those beautiful little bodies will someday belong to their husbands, who I pray will be godly young men.  And I would suppose a godly young man would not want a bunch of hormonal teenage boys staring at his wife.  Oh, and those teenage boys who are gawking?  Yeah, they are possibly your future sons-in-law or the husbands of your daughter's friends.

Look at the big picture here.  Take a stand for modesty and let's reverse the tide of immodesty and hyper-sexualization one little girl (and boy) at a time.

Thank you.

A Mom Who Cares

Another blog that beautifully speaks to this subject...From the Nato's


  1. I am a friend of Etta L. and I wanted to say thank you for writing this. As the mom to four boys this is a battle that we are continually fighting. As a woman I fight this myself as I look in the mirror every day and think is this modest. It isn't easy but it is necessary.

  2. I feel the same way and am constantly amazed by the barrage of inappropriate signs, magazines, in grocery stores, store windows, etc. Hip Hip Horray for modesty!!

  3. Robin and Sandy, thank you and AMEN!

  4. I can appreciate what you are saying. I have two daughters and we have always taught them modesty. We have also taught our son to be respectful of women. One other thing I would like to add that I don't see discussed often: male modesty. While girls may not be as visual as boys, to assume that they are not being affected by seeing underdressed men is a mistake. Our society seems to be much more comfortable with men showing more skin, it hasn't always been so. Modesty is a two way street and I for one would like to see more men covering up in public. Wear a shirt and forget the speedos. Unless you're a competitive swimmer then boxer swim trunks and a tank shirt are the only appropriate attire for swimming.

  5. I do not completely agree with this assessment or the emphasis placed on the girls in remaining modest. The one thing that really stood out as a true male understanding is this: boys are visual and so are men! Teach your young men to respect girls/ women no matter what the attire, and the bigger issue will be addressed Ask most men, and they would ttell you that your daughter could be covered in a hijab and they could still visualize boobs! I am not saying that girls should run around looking like h
    ookers, but all too often girls are blamed/accused for the male depravity of lust. Oh by the way, I have both a son and two daughters.

    1. I understand what you are saying. But when I look up "modesty" in the New Testament the only reference I can find to modest clothing is regarding the way women dress. (1 Tim.2:9) Men are ultimately accountable for their thought life, and if they struggle with lust then you are doesn't matter what we wear. But it is disrespectful to my brothers in Christ (or my son and his friends whose hormones are raging)to purposefully dress myself or my daughters in a way that I know will cause them to struggle. It is like offering to take an alcoholic friend to dinner and surprising them by taking them to a bar. Yes, they have to choose to eat the fish and chips or nachos and not order alchohol, but I have made a wrong choice by setting them up to stumble.

      As for the respect issue, a woman who is known for her personality, her intellect, her maturity, and who she is in Christ instead of for her plunging neckline will naturally garner respect. My children are told in Scripture to honor their parents, but if I treat them dishonorably it will make it extremely difficult for them to do so.

  6. Is it at all possible that young men may struggle in regards to seeing a woman in shorts or bathing suits because growing up they are taught to look away because it is evil?

    Is it at all possible that if young men are trained rather than shielded growing up to see these things in public but control their thoughts they would find it easier to control the sin of lust?

    I think it is noble to cover up because you think it will keep the sin of lust from happening. However, if you think that lust is connected to the apparel of women you are mistaken. Lust is tied to the desires of the flesh. Sometimes I wonder if women constantly pointing out the short shorts, the tight swim suits, etc are making the heart want to see it more.

    It's like the kid and the hot stove. They haven't touched it. Mom says not to. The hot stove wouldn't otherwise be attractive to touch. However, because it is forbidden it becomes that much more attractive to touch!


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