A Hot Topic

A_Hot_TopicRaising our girls, we are very particular about teaching them to be mindful of their modesty. Their dresses (or skirts) can’t be much higher than their knees, they are advised on how much skin they show, and their swimsuits  always cover their bodies fully. It wasn’t until my son, however, that the issue of male modesty became a hot topic. Why is it that women have to be so concerned with covering themselves, but men do not? Why can they parade their bodies for the world to see, while we are told to cover up? In my opinion, they shouldn’t!

When I first had my son, I talked about this issue with other moms who had boys. The first and foremost answer I got was this: “Well, men are visual and women aren’t. So, they don’t have to worry about stumbling women.” Friends, I am here to tell you that is not true.

Perhaps it is the generation I grew up in or perhaps it is my personal temptation, who knows? What I do know is that the above statement does not apply to me. I am very visual. I like looking at my guy’s manly chest and his rippling muscles. (Because he has them; thank you, Lord).

In fact, when you look at society as a whole, we are pushing our daughters towards this mentality. Look at the majority of magazines, news ads, and talk shows encouraging us to ogle men. We are taught to be open about our interest and drool whenever possible.

Now, back to my original statement, if we are so concerned with our young women not being “pieces of meat” for men to gaze upon; why do we care so little for our young men? Shouldn’t they be taught to respect their bodies and keep them under wraps?

My daughters wear two piece bathing suits which look similar to shorts and t-shirts; they are UV protectant and cover them from their shoulders down to mid-thigh. When my son was old enough to get in the pool with us, at about a year old, it seemed only right he be taught the same principle. He too wears a two piece short and shirt outfit which protects and covers.

I am very grateful our homeschool PSP is of the same mindset. When we have beach days, the boys are told to wear surf shirts or body suits. The girls are not allowed to wear two piece bathing suits, and if they do, they are made to cover up with a dark-colored shirt. It is a blessing to be surrounded by people who are like-minded.

Modesty is a hot topic and one which shouldn’t only apply to girls. Our young men need to not only respect the ladies around them, but respect themselves.

“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”
I Corinthians 6:19-20

📢 Chime In!: Do you have sons? Is their modesty an issue in your household?

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8 thoughts on “A Hot Topic

  1. I’ve never thought about this topic as it can/does apply to boys. I have two daughters and two sons and I really appreciate what you had to say in this post. My boys, who are super skinny, wear swim shirts to keep warm (so they can stay in the water longer)! My daughters take modesty to heart and feel more comfortable covered up and not on “display” as the world would prefer them to be (plus they are pre-teen and have begun to notice the huge amount of skin being shown on beaches around us). My boys are still digging holes, building castles and splashing in the water so they don’t notice anyone around them – yet. Thank you for this wonderful reminder and how modesty is not gender neutral!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t run a terribly modest household, but I do try to stress that the rules on modesty are the same for boys and girls. My boys aren’t allowed outside the house without a top on, unless it’s at the beach, but again, we don’t run a modest household. We tend to be more mainstream than that. We just do what we can to make sure all the kids are held to the same rules. It would be unfair to do otherwise.

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    • We’re not as focused on the “fair” factor as having a desire to teach our son to have respect for himself and the women he is around.

      Just as our daughters are not here for men to ogle, our sons are not pieces of meat to be put on display, nor should they be ignorant of stumbling young ladies. It’s a matter of decency.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. I first thought about this when I discovered Bollywood movies – in which men and women are equally paraded about! It struck me that those movies are more ‘fair’ than Hollywood and European movies, because the male and female actors face comparably absurd expectations regarding their appearance and behavior. Hollywood tends to put all the pressure for showing skin and looking a certain way onto the women. In Bollywood, the men are expected to prance around with no shirt and bulging muscles, making it ‘even’! And they are actors, volunteering to be ogled. (For example, ‘‘Bang! Bang!’, an action-comedy-romance with Hrithik Roshan and Katrina Kaif.) We live in an area with almost half the population being newly immigrated from elsewhere, so we see all kinds of things in terms of children’s clothing and behavior – girls wearing everything from burkas (African, usually) to mini-shorts (Latino), homemade dresses (Russian and African) and trendy skin-tight sportwear (Quebec). Plenty of food for conversation! The boys generally just wear casual clothes, across the board. Except for tennis players and cyclists – male modesty definitely could toot its horn in those areas! I like your point!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Besides the modesty issue, my grandsons always wear swim shirts as a health issue. Sunscreen doesn’t always protect their delicate skin, even though we slather it on frequently. And sunburns can really hurt! (Plus our family is prone to skin cancer.) We also insist that they wear hats when they aren’t in the water.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Not having a son, I hadn’t thought much about it…but you’re right! I don’t feel like I have quite the sensitivity that men do, but I definitely find I’ve got to guard my eyes as the weather heats up!
    And who knows what it’s like for every progressive generation that’s being exposed to more and more sexual images.
    Point well made!

    Liked by 1 person

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