Q. Our adolescent daughter spends hours figuring out what she's going to wear to school and shops constantly with her friends. She also wants to wear low-rider jeans and has bought some tiny T-shirts that barely skim her midriff. She tells me all her youth-group friends dress the same way. This concerns me. Am I being a prude?
A. With two daughters aged 11 and 12, I'm living the same nightmare. Who stole our little girls and exchanged them for these hormonal young women? And from what planet did they get these clothes? Must be Saturn, because suddenly our daughters also want multiple rings, and I'm not just talking about on their fingers!
Remember, you're the parent—and you have a right to insist your daughter dress according to what you feel is pleasing to God. I don't think you are being a prude to feel uncomfortable about today's fashions. Sounds to me like the Holy Spirit's nudging.
I haven't had this discussion with my youngest daughter, but I have with her older sister. After one particularly emotionally charged conversation about why I wouldn't allow her to wear a halter top, I talked to her about boys and the way God wired them. I explained how young men often are tempted to sin, especially in their thoughts, when a girl's body visually stimulates them. We also talked about what kind of message she wants to send by the clothes she chooses to wear.
This honest communication helped her understand the power she has to walk in the Light and, at the same time, help others not to stumble in the darkness.
LISA WHELCHEL is the author of Creative Correction (Focus on the Family), So You're Thinking About Homeschooling (Multnomah), and the founder of MomTime Get-A-Ways. She and her husband, Steve, have three children. E-mail your parenting questions for Lisa to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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