FYI (if you’re a teenage girl) [COUNTERPOINT]

This is a response to this post – http://givenbreath.com/2013/09/03/fyi-if-youre-a-teenage-girl/ – which reads, in part:

Did you know that once a male sees you in a state of undress, he can’t ever un-see it? You don’t want the Hall boys to only think of you in this sexual way, do you?

Neither do we.

And so, in our house, there are no second chances, ladies. If you want to stay friendly with the Hall men, you’ll have to keep your clothes on, and your posts decent. If you try to post a sexy selfie, or an inappropriate YouTube video – even once – you’ll be booted off our on-line island.

I know that sounds harsh and old-school, but that’s just the way it is under this roof for a while. We hope to raise men with a strong moral compass, and men of integrity don’t linger over pictures of scantily clad high-school girls.

Read the rest of that article here: http://givenbreath.com/2013/09/03/fyi-if-youre-a-teenage-girl/
beachboys

Counterpoint:

1) I can’t help but find it a bit ironic that the post is about women’s modesty but includes two photos of topless boys on a beach. Seems a bit like a double standard.

2) Rachel Held Evans says it way better than I could:
a) “We turn modesty into objectification when we hold women responsible for the thoughts and actions of men.”
b) “The truth is, a man can choose to objectify a woman whether she’s wearing a bikini or a burqa. We don’t stop lust by covering up the female form; we stop lust by teaching men to treat women as human beings worthy of respect.”
c) “It doesn’t take long for a woman to realize that no matter what she wears, the curves of her body remain visible and will occasionally attract the notice of men. If this reality is met only with shame, if the female form is treated as inherently seductive and problematic, then women will inevitably feel ashamed of their bodies.”

You can read RHE’s whole article here:
http://www.qideas.org/blog/modesty-i-dont-think-it-means-what-you-think-it-means.aspx

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4 thoughts on “FYI (if you’re a teenage girl) [COUNTERPOINT]

  1. I agree with lots of that, but her blog wasn’t just about dress, it was also about the location of the photo and how she posed for the photo.

    • I’m assuming you’re talking about this section:

      “I get it – you’re in your room, so you’re heading to bed, right? But then I can’t help but notice the red carpet pose, the extra-arched back, and the sultry pout. What’s up? None of these positions is one I naturally assume before sleep, this I know…

      … Those posts don’t reflect who you are! We think you are lovely and interesting, and usually very smart. But, we had to cringe and wonder what you were trying to do? Who are you trying to reach? What are you trying to say?”

      It sounded to me like the author assumed the answer to her questions about the girls’ poses “What are you trying to say?” is: “I’m trying to seduce your boys.”

      I doubt that was the case. More likely, the girls were trying to have some fun and share their fun with their friends via social media. And that should be their right.

      And if a parent wants to keep her boys from seeing girls in poses like that, she has the right to block them.

      However, she goes on to write: “…there are no second chances, ladies. If you want to stay friendly with the Hall men, you’ll have to keep your clothes on, and your posts decent. If you try to post a sexy selfie, or an inappropriate YouTube video – even once – you’ll be booted off our on-line island.”

      And here, I believe, is the problematic nature of the post. She assumes that these girls are trying to be indecent and sexy and inappropriate.

      And, more troubling, she’s putting the burden of protecting her boy’s thoughts, not on her boys, but on these girls!

      …”take down anything that makes it easy for your male friends to imagine you naked in your bedroom.”

      But how are girls to know where those limits are? How frumpy and modest is frumpy and modest enough? The line I quoted from Rachel Held Evans frames the issue perfectly:

      “The truth is, a man can choose to objectify a woman whether she’s wearing a bikini or a burqa. We don’t stop lust by covering up the female form; we stop lust by teaching men to treat women as human beings worthy of respect.”

      I’m not sure if I addressed your concern. If I missed your point, I apologize.

      Thanks for reading and for commenting.

      • Just before I saw your reply, I heard on Savage Lovecast from a guy who says, lots of times young girls don’t know what they’re advertising, and they don’t know that they’re advertising not just to they’re girl friends but also to guys at their school, and to old men.

        Yet they advertise. Adults should teach them about all this, but we don’t. Yes, adults should also teach boys, young men, and grown men to look at women with respect, but we don’t.

        My original post wasn’t in disagreement with anybody. I see irony in Mrs. Hall’s words posted with those pictures. I think she’s a little extreme. I think that maybe she holds some weight from youth on her shoulders. I think she doesn’t place enough responsibility on her own sons, and I think that, in turn, is teaching her sons to blame women for their own faults. But Rachel Held Evans (I didn’t read her full post, only the excerpts you posted) seems to think the problem in the social media photos is just the clothing, forgetting that there’s more to a photo than the wardrobe.

  2. Pingback: Is authentic culture possible in an age of mirrors? | Mercy not Sacrifice

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