If you are the parent of a teenager you are already painfully aware of their need to be on top of the latest fashions and fads. It is like a competition with them on who has the latest fashion apparel and who does not. At the same time, it is our job as parents to be sure that this doesn't go too far, especially in light of the fads that are out today. We have all seen the boys fashions that have them wearing pants that are way too big and showing their boxers and with girls we see tight low cut tops that are so short that their belly buttons show. In my opinion these are totally inappropriate for young teens and I see girls as young as 12 dressed this way.
If you are like me your first thought will probably be to get upset and say something like, "The only way you are wearing that is over my dead body", of course it is totally your right to do so but you may end up causing a rift between you and your teen. If you take a moment to think back to what it was like when you were a teen you will probably remember that you hated being told what to wear by your own parents and that you swore you wouldn't be the same, yet here you are. Maybe we need to be a little more subtle about it.
With girls in particular the wearing of these new style fads could end up exposing them to harm which is one way to approach them about it. Let them know that there are many sexual predators out there who may get the wrong idea from them when they are wearing the low cut tops and jeans that are leaving them exposed. For many girls this should be enough to make them tone it down a little, the idea of some old guy wanting them will totally gross them out. If you take the time to explain it this way it may be more successful than just saying, "You can't wear that because I say you can't".
It is helpful to remind your teenager that these trends in fashion change all the time so it is not unusual to see these trends last only a few months at a time. One thing that you can do to encourage change if you don't like what your teens are wearing is do a little fashion research on your own. If you can find a new style that is just emerging maybe you can get them to wear that instead and be a trend setter instead of a follower. It may pay for you to keep up with fashion magazines and online sites.
Another issue with kids in middle school and high school is school dress codes, since most schools have dress codes that forbid revealing clothing it may be wise for you to put your foot down before the school does and you end up having a teen that is suspended for breaking the school dress code. It is far better to end the problems before they start.
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