Monday, October 29, 2007


And now that I have your attention.....

I read this today. It's all about the tramping up of pre-teen girls for Halloween. I will concede that they have a point. Luckily I do not have a daughter and so don't have to find a creative solution to this problem. I do, however, have a son who is probably about to see far more of his peer's flesh than I am really comfortable with. And with childhood obesity on the rise, that is bound to miles and miles of kiddie skin.

But unlike the article, I blame the whiny lazy parents. If your 10 year old comes waltzing out of your house on Halloween night looking like she should be gracing the windows of Amsterdam's red light district, it's your fault. The retailers couldn't sell them if parents wouldn't buy them. I know, even with the best efforts, kids will disobey their parents. Mine does. But for this particular night, you've had a few opportunities to prevent the junior Lolita from heading out on the town. The article states:
But how do you compromise with a kid who's begging to be a saucy witch when all you want to do is go back to the days when she wanted to be a lion cub or a Teletubby? There's no easy answer for that question.
Really? I think there is. I know in this day and age of progressive parenting that it has become unpopular, but you can tell your children 'No'. They will still love you once the fit is finished. Here's a bonus for you, they will actually respect you more. You will have the opportunity to become friends with your offspring once you have successfully shepherded them into adulthood. Parenting is a big job and you will make mistakes, don't complicate the matter by trying to be your child's friend right now. So here's how I propose the conversation should go at the store--

Daddy! Daddy! Daddy! (insert extra blinks-it's a skill little girls use on dads) I found the perfect costume. Will you buy it for me Daddy? Pleeeeeeeaaaaase! (drawn out to further wrap dad around finger)
DAD: Let me see honey. (holds up 3 strips of fabric and a tiara) What is this supposed to be?
CHILD: It's Tramp-A-Rella Daddy! She's only the coolest crime fighting superhero. Duh. All the girls at school are gonna be so jealous. Oh yeah! I'm gonna need make-up too.
DAD: But Princess, where's the rest of it? I'm not going to spend 40 bucks on a costume that's missing pieces. Why don't you see if you can find the pants?
CHILD: *giggle. Daaaaddy, Tramp-A-Rella doesn't wear pants.
DAD: Oh I see. Then let's find something else. Tramp-A-Rella isn't really an appropriate costume for an 8 year old.
CHILD: But Daddy! All the girl......
DAD: (interrupting) No.
CHILD: (with tears) You never let me have anything cool. I don't like you anymore.
DAD: I'll get over it. And so will you. Besides, I think Princess Fiona would be more appropriate for your...uh...figure.
CHILD: But I want to be Tramp-A-Rella!
DAD: I said 'No.' Now you have 2 choices, find something that covers more than half of your body, or don't dress up for Halloween.

Whimpering will continue, but the argument is over. She might ask Mom, but that takes a whole different bag of tricks. She went to Dad in the first place because daddies are typically easier targets for little girl's manipulations. I don't have a little girl, but I was one once. I even asked my dad if he ever got a back ache from being wrapped around my little finger.

If somehow, the tramp-suit does make it to your home. Or if she decides to modify a perfectly respectable costume, you still don't have to let her leave the house in it.

For only a short period in our children's lives, we parents hold the cards. We provide transportation and the finances for every aspect of their lives. It is during this time that we get to attempt to instill some values in our children. I am by no stretch of the imagination the world's best mom. I don't bake cookies. I don't host cute parties with hats. I dread parent teacher conferences. Really, I don't like children (besides my own; I have a bias). I am only concerned with the little princesses because one day, my son will want to bring one home, and I want the future mother of my grandkids to have a solid head on her shoulders.


Kirsten said...

Here, Here! As the parent of a new girl (and the wife of an already wrapped daddy), I have to say that my daughter will always be a nun for halloween. :)

Michael said...

"I am only concerned with the little princesses because one day, my son will want to bring one home, and I want the future mother of my grandkids to have a solid head on her shoulders."

Well said, babe. Allow me to add that she should have a positive self-image, and should value herself enough to make a suitable mate. A solid head is good, but that should come with a solid heart as well. These parents letting their little girls dress like whores is doing nothing for our declining society. I'm not saying that they will certainly turn into dumpster sluts, but they sure are starting with the uniform early...