Saturday, February 28, 2009

Some parenting thoughts

Before I vent, let me preface this post by saying that I in no way think parenting is an easy job. Nor do I think I will be some stellar example of parenting perfection. And, for the most part, I think that I'm fairly open-minded most of the time. I don't stress much at the possibility of my eventual teenager having blue hair, intentionally ripped pants or being that token hippy or punk rock kid in my neighborhood, provided they clean it up a bit when they're with grandma and consistently treat others with respect. If he wears his baseball hat sideways, that's another issue, but that's a personal thing that drives me up the wall. I just want to raise my kids to be respectful with good heads on their shoulders.

This week I was at school with my 5th graders and noticed that one of my boys was wearing a shirt with two hands on it held up in capital L's as if holding an invisible camera. The phrase posted above it?

"Picture me caring".

On the same day, I noticed that one of my girls had writing on the behind of her sweats.

The very next day, another one of my boys came in wearing a shirt with a pair of eyes rolling upward and the following word:


Cue my rant of the week or month or whatever. Why the hell do parents allow children to have writing printed on their backsides and wear shirts with rude remarks on them??!!! Seriously...I've had enough of this. My students are 10 and 11 years old! Why do people think it's okay for young girls in our society to have attention intentionally drawn to their behinds? I don't get it. Have you taken a look lately in a kids' clothing store? A ton of stuff for the girls is more like outfits for teenagers or women that are just smaller. It makes me ill. And don't even get me started on the Playboy Bunny that has popped up on shirts, keychains and purses in recent years. I can't even begin to talk about that. Our society sexualizes our children younger than ever and then is baffled by why they are dealing with issues that kids previously struggled with much later in life. And so, early on in the words-on-a$s trend, I came to the conclusion that any daughters I may have will not be permitted to have any butt print of any kind. I don't care what it, justice, field hockey. No to all of it. Because I don't want my kid to think that's what's important in her life should be announced via her a$s.

The rude shirts thing annoys me even more. And you know that 10 and 11 year olds are not out shopping for their own clothes which means some dipsh!t parent is out with them, chuckling over the fact that they're about to drop $20 on a shirt that has a comment on it that would make me want to smack a child if the comment actually came out of their mouth. And the thing is, the kids who wear these shirts to school, let's just say that in my nine years of teaching, none of them are winning any awards for their outstanding dedication to their studies or positive attitude towards life in general.

And in the same respect, why are small children wearing clothing with statements like, "100% spoiled brat" or "diva"? I don't get it....if your kid's wearing it, it's generally because there is some ounce of truth to it that makes the shirt humorous to whoever purchased it. But really, what's funny about it? What compels you to advertise the fact that your child is currently struggling with behavior? It's normal for kids to go through difficult phases, but is it normal for parents to brag about it via a onesie like they hope it continues forever and ever?

I'm all for kids expressing their individuality and coming into their own. In fact, I think it's an important part of their development. But why aren't some parents providing a little more guidance in this department?

JackiJaguar steps off her soapbox, bringing her judgemental and harsh but completely honest rant to a close.


Anonymous said...

It's not just on kid clothing, but baby clothing as well... I've seen baby shirts that say "babe" and "hottie". It's disgusting.

kate said...

I'm totally with you on this! I had this exact issue come up last week with one of the second graders. He was wearing a shirt printed with "Little F.A.R.T. Racing League" on it and he was showing it off to anyone who would look. (seriously, who buys that for their kid?!) I grabbed my principal as she was passing and said I didn't think it was appropriate. She immediately grabbed him and gave him the choice of going to the nurse and getting a new shirt or turning the shirt inside out. He walked around the rest of the day with and inside out shirt.

jess said...

Thanks, Jacki, for backing up what I am finding to be ridiculously maddening. I have always agreed with the no ANYTHING on the butt rule. I NEVER imagined it would be an issue in trying to buy clothign before the child is even born!!! I was in Carter's the other day and found a ton of great boy outfits, and then when I ventured over to the girl side, even the cutest onesies and 3-6 month outfits that are completely adorable from the front have HUGE duck face/butterfly/heart/flower decals sewn right over the ass! What's the deal??? I guess the world is now trying to point out how cute a girl's diaper ass is? And none of these butt things are on the boy clothes. I foresee making my daughter share her brother's onesies before I'll take her out in public with a duck face on her ass.

~Hollie said...

I am in total agreement. And IF I might be so bold as to add, if my kid comes home with the waistband of his jeans around his knees, he can march his little behind to someone that will tolerate that mess, because I DO NOT! I don't really care that its a fashion trend, I'm tired of seeing BUTT CRACKS and THINGS I SHOULDN"T SEE when they are bending over RIGHT in front of you.

Okay, jumping off the soapbox!

Erica said...

Love this one!

Next time we see these shirts on you know who, let's send him to the office. You know Jo-Jo will call the mom and it'll serve her right.

Allison said...

I totally agree with you. I am kind of scared raising a girl now, knowing how the clothes for 10 year olds are now.

Kelly said...

Crap...I just bought Ben a pair of pants that say "PIMP" on the butt. I guess I'll have to take them back!