Has anyone not clashed over clothing choices with their parents when they were 14? I don’t know, I distinctly remember my mother was actually pleased when I bought a halter top because it meant that I wasn’t dressing like “that man” Kurt Cobain anymore. To be honest, he’s a style icon, and cardigan sweaters are always in fashion. But I digress.
One dad on Reddit is fed up with the “revealing” way his 14-year-old daughter dresses, and he’s threatening to cancel their special father-daughter night because of it.
Why is it always young girls who are criticized for their clothing being too revealing? Aren’t girls always getting suspended from school for having their bra strap stick out or wearing leggings or a tank top on an 80-degree day or some other weird, sexist garbage?
“I don’t like the way she dresses. She’s 14. Her clothes are too revealing. I’ve told her this. She says she doesn’t care. Fine. Maybe it’s a teenager thing. I don’t push it. Saturday comes. Saturday is Father Daughter night – we walk around, talk about everything that happened that week, maybe get some snacks. I told her she can’t walk with me if she’s dressed like that. She didn’t want to change, so I walked alone. When I came back, my wife told me that she’s in her room crying and that I should go talk to her,” the OP writes.
“There’s nothing to talk about. I don’t say anything about her clothing choice from Sunday to Friday, but if she can’t wear decent clothes for an hour or two to walk with her father, then she’s made her choice. My wife said I was being childish. I stand on what I said.”
Is this dad being childish? I sure think so — and so do other Redditors.
“She’s your DAUGHTER. Why are you sexualizing her? Why is that HER fault? How very victim-blame-y. So not only are you sexualizing her, you’re literally punishing her for the fact that you can’t control sexualizing her. You’re a grown-ass man and she’s a teenager . ‘I don’t push it.’ Then what the hell is this post? You’re in denial about yourself. JFC. It’s not ‘unconditional love’ if it’s conditional on what she wears. YTA, majorly. I can’t even imagine the hoops she’s had to jump through to try and get your ‘love.’ Please seek therapy, for both of you,” said FiguringItOut–.
“You’re coasting to a future where your daughter won’t tell you any of the important stuff in her life. She’s 14, talk to her, find a compromise. ‘When I came back, my wife told me that she’s in her room crying’…and you don’t care. What a horrible thing for a parent to do to a child,” said s-mores.
“YTA. She is a teenager who wants to spend time with her father. Do you have any idea how lucky you are?! Swallow your pride and get over it,” advised Jaded_Cryptographer.
“You told your child that you were ashamed of her. It’s not clear at all what she wears from this post, but the teens I work with are sometimes sporting crop tops with normal- or high-waisted bottoms, or baggy shirts with regular shorts, so I’m guessing it’s just trendy clothes. Trendy clothes that are, incidentally, a lot more modest than some of the stuff my peers and I wore in high school in the early 00s. Look, as a former teenage girl, I’ll level with you: a lot of the time, these kids don’t have any sexy angle they’re working, not like you and I think of as adults. They’re growing up and they want to be trendy, and self-expression with clothing is a big part of it. It’s more about fitting in or finding their niche than it is about being explicitly sexual. Most of the girls sporting ultra-low-rise jeans and micro-minis and skintight spaghetti-strap tank tops in my high school were just normal kids struggling with puberty and learning to date and calculus and all that stuff- we weren’t out to score or be Grown-Up Sexy. We bought what was in the stores because we wanted to be current and cool and independent (Yes, I am aware of the irony there, but…teenagers). We put, as adults, a lot of our own baggage onto these kids and it interferes with how we listen to and communicate with them. I’d encourage you to let your daughter be here, both because it’s lower-stakes than you might think, and because you don’t want to push her away. Make sure she is educated about sexual health and appropriate boundaries- whether it’s you, your wife, or another trusted adult, make sure someone tells her what’s up…Listen to your wife here and try a more measured approach with your daughter. You run the risk of alienating her otherwise, and that can have devastating consequences. She needs to feel safe with her parents so she can tell you about problems and call on you for help if she’s in over her head. Don’t die on this hill and risk that,” advised unsaferaisin.
“Your post translates to: ‘I think you look like a whore, so I don’t want to be seen with you because I am better than you.’ Your daughter now thinks she only deserves your love and time as long as she does as you want,” said OrangeSockMonkey
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