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Don't judge her by that miniskirt she's wearing

My three-and-a-half-year-old chooses her own clothes. She likes tulle. And frills. And skirts that swish. Much to my dismay. My intention was to raise a tomboy because tomboys are tough and no-nonsense. You mess with a tomboy and she’ll punch you in the face. That was my thinking. But like she has done ever since she was conceived, my sassy lil’ miss has her own plans.

She’s decided that she’s a girly girl. As a result, all the ‘neutral’ colours I dressed her in when she was younger have gradually been replaced with what I consider stereotypical ‘girl colours’. You know, the pinks, purples and yellows. I wanted to fight her on it. I wanted to tell her that the world doesn’t take girly girls seriously. That tulle and frills and swish were going to attract the wrong kind of attention.

She's tough

But then I realised how stupid I was being. I was judging a three-and-a-half-year-old based on her outfit choices. Just because she’s partial to pink doesn’t make her weak. She’s feisty. Tough. No-nonsense. Look at her sideways and she’ll make a good attempt to knock you out, princess dresses and sparkly shoes notwithstanding.

She is not her clothes. There is no doubt in my mind that she will continue to surprise me with her fashion sense.

I foresee a time when she might want to wear hot pants, micro-minis or plunging necklines. And she’ll probably want to leave the house looking like that. I’m going to want to fight her on it. I’ll want to tell her that good girls don’t expose their bodies.

That ‘barely-there’ shorts, micro-minis and plunging necklines attract the attention of bad men. That respect is only given to decently dressed women. But then I will realise how stupid I’m being. I’m not raising a fashion model for the world to judge purely on the basis of how she’s dressed. I’m raising a multi-dimensional human being.

A woman whose sense of self needs to start from the inside out. What she chooses to wear should be a secondary consideration. A woman’s character should always be the primary focus of attention. I know that this is not often the case, but it should be.

So I will not be telling my daughter how to dress. Well, if I’m honest, she’s three-and-a-half and I’ve already lost that battle. What I should say is that I will not be judging her for her fashion choices because appearances are almost always inaccurate. There are many other things that matter more.

The debate never ends

And yet the female form, and how women present themselves to the world, continues to be a point of debate. Societies around the world persist in promoting a toxic femininity that objectifies women and girls, setting them up to be preyed upon – and then to be blamed for it.

When a woman or a girl speaks out about sexual violence, questions are always asked. What was she doing in that part of town? Was she drunk? Was she flirting with him? How many boyfriends has she had? But doesn’t she sleep around? Questions and more questions, ostensibly to establish the ‘facts’ because women who accuse men of assault can’t be trusted, right?

The most insulting is this one: What was she wearing? The assumption being that a man would not sexually violate a woman unless she somehow had a part to play in his perversion. This casting of women as eternal provocateurs is problematic in two ways.

First, it allows men to walk away from the responsibility of their actions, and second, it shifts the burden of proof so that instead of confidently reporting harassment and rape, women must first defend their ‘morals’. The system is set up in such a way that women are disbelieved in the first instance, whereas when men speak up about sexual assault they are taken at face value.

This is why feminists will punch you in the face when you question women who have found the courage to report sexual assault. This is why they will knock you out when you shame the women who have drawn on the strength of their sisters to say MeToo.

Here’s the thing: Women and girls have been living in the shadows of a forced victimhood for eons. They have been blamed and shamed into silence. At the end of the day, if you’re one of those people who questions every woman who tells her story, then you are part of the problem.Read more at:bridesmaid dresses online |

Publicerat klockan 07:40, den 15 november 2017
Postat i kategorin Okategoriserat
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