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Modesty Wars

4.25.2012

This morning 7 year old Ella and I had a disagreement about modesty.  I thought I would blog abut it here since some of you can relate.

Ella: I'm ready for school...all dressed....(she said this with hesitation in her voice)

Me: Looks great! You just need a shirt for under that dress.

Ella: Ughhh!!!  What?!!  No I don't! Why?

Me: Because it's not modest.

Ella: I hate your rules! You're not being nice!

Me: They aren't my rules. Heavenly Father gave us rules about our bodies and I made a deal with him to enforce those rules as long as you live in our home.

Ella: What's not modest about it?!

Me: The sleeves. The sleeves are too narrow.

Ella: Oh yeah? Oh yeah?! Well what about the beach?

Me: Heavenly Father has different rules for dressing a the beach.

Ella: I hate the rules.

Me: I know you do, but those are the rules of our home.

(she starts heading up stairs and mumbles under her breath...)

Ella: Maybe you're NOT the best Mom in the whole wide world.

Do I really have 11 more years 
of this discussion ahead of me?

11 Way Righteous Comments:

Lolly said...

At school yesterday I made two girls wear really ugly brown shirts over their tank tops. They looked just like Ella's...little bitty straps. So tell her that all the way in Utah Lolly is making girls be modest too!

Jenny said...

Poor Ella. Poor Emilie. Once when my Mom thought I was wearing a shirt that was too short {came just to the top of my jeans} she took a pen and marked my tummy so that I would be too embarrassed to wear the shirt in case someone saw my tummy.

Maude said...

Oh the joys... At least I have a couple of years to prepare :) Boys and modesty is not that difficult.
We do have other issues though like why hitting your brother for fun really isn't fun...

Ashlie said...

I was amazed when my two year old picked up on the modesty thing. Although, she took it a *little* far and would only wear long sleeve shirts in June. But she got it. At a young age. And my lightbulb went off and I knew I had to start the rules early. Some people say it doesn't matter when they're young - I would've probably leaned that way before I had kids - but now that my almost 4-year old grabs an undershirt to go with a sleeveless top I'm sure glad I caught on early. I just hope to stay vigilant with modesty because it makes me sad to see girls devalue themselves by dressing to show their "assets" rather than their confidence, skills and intelligence.

Wendy said...

Our little girl struggled then we started using the Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes song. For some reason she is totally ok when we ask her to sing the song and check if her clothes are ok. No tummy shows when we touch our head. Shoulders covered. Skirts to the knees. And no bottom shows when we touch our toes. Hang in there! :)

Emilie said...

Ashlie - we have always had these rules and it was never a problem...until Ella started 1st Grade! :) Now, her pull to "look like everyone else" is making these issues appear for the first time.

Camille said...

Sounds so familar. Whats your go to response for "How come so and so doesn't dress modestly?" (asked innocently not defiant).

Emilie said...

Camille - I'm kind of new at this. Ella is my oldest. I usually say, "Not every family has the same rules. But these are the rules of OUR family and that's all that you need to worry about".

Is that even working? I dunno.
:)

Amy said...

I agree that modesty needs to be started soon. my 7yo doesn't fight me because we started early. (i do have a 1yo girl so i may have that battle with her)
We lived in the hottest place on earth and my daughter still layered a shrug over tanktops, her choice.
The story happens too often where the little girls get to wear whatever they want and then when they turn 12 they have to wear modest clothes. HUH? why 12?? Then they scream and kick and fight. Might as well get it over with early. My 50 yo sister is still holding back on going to the temple and one of the reasons is the wardrobe change for her.
I'm the only one on my side of the family who thinks modesty is important. Meanwhile my husbands "perfect" sister doesn't enforce it and holds on to way crazy things. They're having there own stuggles now.
The little things add up and matter.

Chels said...

My parents were strict about modesty and I hated having to wear shorts to the knees. I "rebelled" when I was on my own and 2,000 miles from home. The whole summer I felt like I was trying to be somebody that I wasn't-- I came back to earth and realized my parents made a great choice to give me modesty rules. I was thankful (in hindsight of course) that they stood strong even in the teenage years

The Friend is even touching on the topic more and my 9 year old daughter has noticed. She points out all the little things she sees about modesty while reading the Friend. I think it helps her to know that she isn't the only one that is dressing modestly. This is a good story: http://www.lds.org/friend/2010/05/modest-at-any-age?lang=eng

Good luck and know you're not alone!

Marily said...

I only have boys so this is not as much of an issue. I realize though that it is SO much better that you stand your ground now while she is young. Maybe then you won't need to have this struggle with her when she's older.

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