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to think the girls were inappropriately dressed?

(59 Posts)
nanaej Sun 09-Jun-13 23:26:07

I have been thinking about this since yesterday. I was waiting for a train at Guildford on Saturday. 3 young girls about 13/14 were on the platform. From their chatter it sounded as though they were bright and articulate youngsters ..they were talking about school, homework, holidays etc. Their accents/speech suggested they were from fairly 'middle class' families. They appeared to be lovely girls and causing no problems at all. My concern was that they were wearing shorts so short & tight they might as well have had just pants on! They had bare midriffs. They were wearing light make up.

I felt uncomfortable for them. I felt they looked like 'jail bait'.

I know women should be free to dress as they like and it should never be an excuse for men/boys to assault. I tried to remember when I was their eyeliner/..did I ever look like that?

AIBU to think they were inappropriately dressed???

harrigran Sun 09-Jun-13 23:29:46

No, YANBU. It is very worrying to see young girls with very little clothing on.

NfkDumpling Mon 10-Jun-13 07:12:17

It shouldn't make a difference what they wear, but it does. Looking and dressing like tarts must inevitably turn some men on. Most wouldn't dream of taking things further - but one might.

janeainsworth Mon 10-Jun-13 07:20:03

nanaej I do remember that the year I went to university (1967) when I held my arms down, the hem of my skirt was about two inches above the level of my fingers, and about half an inch below my knickers.
The fact that my skirts were tweedy jobs from Marks anbd Spencer probably didn't lessen the disapproval of my parents and other adults, but did I care?

Bez Mon 10-Jun-13 07:41:20

My DGD is 20 and she was complaining the other day that she had been unable to buy any new shorts because they were only the size of kickers!

Lilygran Mon 10-Jun-13 08:50:21

I think there's a difference between what an 18 year old chooses to wear and what younger teenagers wear. There is a line somewhere, I'm sure, beyond which we have the sexualisation of children. But I remember my mother telling me that she left home to meet friends without make-up and with a hat and arrived with lipstick and no hat. In the 1930s! I also remember people in the 50s pinning the shapeless school blouses to the waistband of the shapeless skirts to give them a bit of fit. And rolling the waistbands over so they weren't mid-calf.

Elegran Mon 10-Jun-13 09:27:31

My mother was an assistant guide leader in about 1930. The older leaders were very strict on make-up etc, and the guides all turned up scrubbed and demure. Then after the session they would repair to the loos to add lipstick and perfume and change from uniform into something more suitable for meeting boys. Mum knew this but did not tell the old biddies.

Nothing changes. The young are desperate to loook older and more sophisticated, their elders would like them to stay young and innocent. The task of parents is to try to slow down the inevitable, and not give in to it too soon.

dorsetpennt Mon 10-Jun-13 09:29:53

My parents were very strict about what I wore but that didn't stop me wearing what I considered fashionable. I always had to 'show myself' before I went out, which I did and passed as fit to go out. Living in the country meant lots of places to change into my outfit and hiding the rest in a hedgerow, putting on loads of black eyeliner and pale pink lipstick and getting my friend to backcomb my hair - she was also doing her quick change. We did all this behind the hedge on edge of a field - our cottage was on a hill behind. What we didn't know was that my father could see what we were doing. He never said a word until years later when I was in my nurse training.

glammanana Mon 10-Jun-13 09:31:51

It shouldn't make a differance really but it does cause me concern as my DGD (14) wears shorts but she wears black tights underneath hmm she does however not wear the make-up you see so many with,I can remember wearing hot pant's and mini's with white boot's and panstick with pale lipstick and black eyeliner so my mum must have had the same misgivings as DD and I have.As long as she stays with her friends when out we tend not to worry knowing the faze will pass.

annodomini Mon 10-Jun-13 09:34:01

My GD (21), until recently used to wear a pair of cut-off denims over black leggings which left nothing to the imagination, and some equally indecent dresses when out clubbing. However, she has taken to wearing skirts of a more demure length - not much above the knees. Could this be a sign of maturity?

gracesmum Mon 10-Jun-13 10:23:26

It depends on what effect they created IMO. They probably had lovely slim middles, legs up to here and thick glossy hair. You say they only wore light make up so I think they probably looked abssolutely lovely! If they had been plastered in Pan-stik/fake tan, with Amy Winehouse hair, ripped jeans and had been sporting muffin tops of vast proportions, they would have looked a whole lot worse, even if more "covered." I do know what you mean, but the owners of lithe young bodies are lucky and I hope that their behaviour made it clear that they were not "on the pull". I remember DH taking our (then) 13 year-old to a very posh birthday party many years ago and coming back looking very unhappy as he described some of the girls as you do "jail bait" - our DDs were always tomboys - but I think it can depend on how clothes are worn as much as whether they are skimpy or not.

janeainsworth Mon 10-Jun-13 11:04:29

Anno it could be a sign of maturity, but it could also be because very short skirts are now apparently rather 'last year' wink

Stansgran Mon 10-Jun-13 11:18:04

I still remember a conversation with a mixed group of nationalities(all women) when I was complaining that my DH was lazy and would not close the garage door when he drove out. It meant that our local school girls used it to tart themselves up for the journey home. All the women joined in about how they rolled up their waistband (Japanese )undid blouse buttons while wearing their headscarves ends long(Muslim) and so on through Hindu,Indian Muslim and Chinese . Sisters under the skin...

Mishap Mon 10-Jun-13 12:27:05

It is a difficult one - at that age they are irresistibly beautiful and a delight to behold, and you do not wish to begrudge them wearing skimpy gear (this is the only time they can get away with it and look good!). But how much do they realise about the effect that they have on others? - particularly men of all ages.

I guess it is down to the parents to advise without instilling fear - but they may of course have changed from the parent-approved gear in a loo somewhere for all we know!

granjura Mon 10-Jun-13 12:31:32

It should make no difference - but yes it does worry me. Nobody should think that a girl with little clothing on is 'asking for it' of course. But where I lived in UK, girls went out at night with practically nothing on, and then got so drunk that they didn't know their names and were falling in the gutter.

When on holiday in traditional/rural areas of Greece and Arab countries - I am amazed that young people, but also adult women- think it is acceptable to go on trips to the hinterland wearing tiny shorts and tops leaving absolutely nothing to the imagination - in small villages where women are totally covered up and wear a scarf or hijab. No wonder the men stare, and the women show their disdain for the lack of respect shown.

Discussing this with my 6th Form students who wore discreet clothing and a hijab or scarf - they actually felt very sorry for the British girls and the way they are exploited by boys and men, by the expectations of the fashion and Bling magazines industry, etc- which turned some of them into 'pieces of meat' - they were so glad to wear clothing that protected them from such expectations and abuse. We often feel Muslim women to be oppressed by having to wear such clothing - but for them, they saw it as protection that gave them dignity too- and felt it was the girls who had to wear skimpy clothing and make up to 'fit in' and also to often be sexual toys for the boys, as the ones oppressed... not them.

Movedalot Mon 10-Jun-13 12:50:50

I think it is normal. I used to wear mini-dresses which meant as soon as I lifted my arms you could see my knickers! Next came hot-pants. At least mini-skirts and shorts don't ride up when you raise your arms.

Also they were in a group which makes them safer. The older generation has always disapproved of the younger in one way or another! smile

annodomini Mon 10-Jun-13 12:53:39

Jane, I wasn't going to say this, but I fear the longer skirts are being worn because she has put on a lot of weight on her thighs and rear end. Grannies are allowed to say this!grin

janeainsworth Mon 10-Jun-13 13:26:21

Anno grin

HUNTERF Mon 10-Jun-13 14:45:35

I can remember coming home on the train once and 2 young ladies were wearing very short skirts and their knickers were partially on display.
They had coats with them which I think would have covered them to about knee level.
It was just before Christmas although the temperature was very high for that time of year.
As I father of 2 girls I did think about saying something but I then thought it could cause problems to myself.
They got off at a station before mine with their coats under their arms.
I just hoped they would put them on as they reached the exit of the station.


FlicketyB Mon 10-Jun-13 15:22:26

I totally agree that no means no and that's that, but in every circumstance anybody needs to have the sense not to put themselves in danger.

I used to have a one mile+ walk to the station to go to work. In the morning and in daylight when their were plenty of people about I used a whole series of narrow footpaths and alleys between houses to shorten the journey, on the way home I stuck to busy roads. I may have been able to use the back doubles at night and never have a problem but I knew that if I did used them there was a greater chance of robbery or sexual assault or worse, so I didn't take the risk.

Exactly the same applies to girls that get blind drunk or dress and behave, and I think the two go together, in a way that suggests they are open to offers, or to lads that get blind drunk and then get into fights and end on murder charges or decide it would be a good idea to walk 5 miles home in a snow storm rather than get a taxi.

goldengirl Mon 10-Jun-13 17:22:37

It's not just ordinary clothes, it's school uniform as well. The girls around here wear pleated skirts which just cover their bottoms; sometimes they wear tights, but not so much this time of year - my blue rinsed Senior Mistress would have had a fit, and now I understand why!!!! [I never thought I'd ever agree with her shock]

Iam64 Tue 11-Jun-13 08:31:13

I am uncomfortable about the use of words like "tarts - Jail bait" here. The implication is that by wearing short skirts/shorts/exposing mid riffs, they girls carry a lot of responsibility if they are then sexually assaulted by a man who simply can't control himself. The focus is on girls, but what about the fact that boys of their age are usually to be seen with that full nappy look, i.e. trousers where the crutch ends at knee length, and where the underpants are visible for a good few inches before the trousers start. I don't think anyone would suggest these young men are showing their underwear, wearing trousers that encourage people to look at their bottoms are "jail bait". Young people have always dressed/talked in a way which was guaranteed to wind up the older generation - it seems to have been a right of passage for as long as we have recorded history. As so many others have said, it's a phase that most of us seemed to have enjoyed.

Elegran Tue 11-Jun-13 08:59:59

I am not being pedantic here (honest! I wouldn't dare) but can I pick out the word "right" here. Going through a phase of doing certain things when changing from one status to another is a "rite of passage" or ritual, not a "right" which is an entitlement which no-one can deprive you of. I have seen it spelt that way before, and always think it is a pity to confuse the two similar-sounding words.

Alongside those who follow the most extreme fashion for wearing clothes and makeup which belong in cheap brothels, there are and always have been many young people who manage to make the transition to adulthood while still looking relatively normal. There are many who don't find drinking until they are unconscious is necessary for becoming a grownup either.

(Before anyone picks me up in turn and says that prostitution is an age-old profession practiced by independent courtesans through the ages, I did say "cheap" brothels, where girls have no choice about which clients they service and how)

Waits for flak on both PC and pedantic fronts.

Nelliemoser Tue 11-Jun-13 09:34:15

It's always been like this! What is new here?
Don't any of you remember mini skirts when they were teenagers. Lean forwards and your pants would show.

Teenagers have always done such risque dressing and always will.

As Cole Porter put it.

"In olden days a glimpse of stockings Was looked on as something shocking, Now heaven knows! Anything goes."

I am far more concerned about the sexy looking and sloganed clothing for the younger girls, say those under their teens.

baubles Tue 11-Jun-13 09:50:25

I abhor the term 'jail bait'. Anyone taking a good look at the faces of these girls would be able to tell their age, perhaps not exactly, but approximately. They look what they are, young girls trying to look older - 'twas ever thus.

The onus is on men to behave responsibly and treat these emerging adults as they would want their own daughters to be treated.