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Wednesday, May 12

“Sexy” Is For Grown-Ups

I don’t consider myself a prude. But this video {via Jezebel} made me want to cry:
{sorry if it’s cut off on your screen}
I want to just be awed by these girls, by their skill, by their energy, by the incredible time commitment such a routine must have required. But I just can’t see past their outfits.
I get that dance outfits are not the kinds of clothes worn on a day to day basis. Tight leotards, cut off tanks, and itt-bitty skirts and shorts are common. But these outfits look like something from a Victoria’s Secret catalogue. And these girls look too young to understand the significance of that. If these girls were sixteen even I don’t think I’d care. In my opinion sixteen is old enough to make a choice to wear sexy clothes for a special occasion {hello prom dresses!}, because most sixteen year olds {provided they’re not living in a cave} have had sex-ed, have begun exploring what it means to be “sexy,” and so on. Speaking as a former theatre geek and a mother I don’t think I have a problem with teenagers wearing sexy costumes for a performance if they really want to. And I think a lot of dance, theatre, color guard, and cheerleading moms would agree.
But these aren’t sixteen year olds {or, if they are, they’re the youngest-looking, tiniest teenagers ever}.
These are kids.
These are girls who are too young to dress up in red and black, lacy, satin-y lingerie costumes.
These are girls who do not have the maturity, experience of knowledge to understand what “sexy” really is.
And that is why I had to hold back the tears while watching the video.
There will be time enough to dress sexy later. They’ll spend the vast majority of their lives as adults. They will have many more years of worrying about their looks and their sex-appeal than they will years of worrying about completing their My Little Pony collection. They will, all on their own, start to seek our and explore clothing that appeals to the opposite sex. They certainly do not need a dance instructor thrusting such outfits upon them at their age. Besides which, the shockingly inappropriate outfits committed one of the cardinal sins of the performance arts: they distracted from the performance.
And that brings me to another criticism as far as the theatrics of the number…why these outfits? See, when I say I’m cool with teenagers wearing sexy costumes I don’t mean it should be solely for the hell of it. Costumes need to fit the performance. There should be a purpose to them. And the sexual nature of these costumes seem to serve absolutely no purpose beyond “being hot” {and again, little girls and “being hot” DO NOT MIX}. As one commenter on the Jezebel site pointed out, not even the original music video featured outfits like these. Beyonce and her dancers wore dance leotards. So *why* if simple leotards are good enough for Beyonce did somebody decide that little girls needed to be sexed-up? And *who* is that someone? And if they are a parent *how* could they think those costumes were a good idea? And *where* are they so I can slap some sense into them?
What do you think? Would you want your child dressed like this for a dance number {a dance number that, I might add, was uploaded to You Tube}? Speak your mind in the comments.

11 Stubborn Stains:

Laila said...

I agree with everything you said. There is no way my daughter ( who is 7) would be allowed to dress or dance like that at her age - even if it was her dance recital
number. Sadly that seems to be the norm for dance, at least from what I saw last year at the dance recitals and that is also why I didn't register Maria this year. Too much emphasis on how they look and some of the dance numbers for her age group were just too provocative for my liking yk? That is why we are focusing on track and field stuff instead (i.e. focusing on being strong and doing your best and not on how you look or how others judge you etc). How old were these girls in the video? It was definitely a jaw
dropping performance ( and sadly I don't mean that in a good way...)

Jenni said...

agree. My daughter will not be taking lessons from a teacher that chooses costumes like that. I would of taken my child out of that class the moment I saw the costume. Maybe if enough parents did that, dane teachers wouldn't be putting kids in costumes like that.
Those girls are great dancers, i'm just too distracted by the costumes.

Courtney said...

I've been thinking of putting my *almost* 2 year old daughter in tumbling, and I've thought a lot about what would happen in the future were she to want to get into dance like this. Under no circumstances would she be allowed to dress like that at such a young age (and, frankly, not when she's 16 either!). You see kids this age at those crazy "beauty" pageants doing the same thing and it just makes me sick. Who thinks a little girl should look like that? It just seems like a bizarre form of almost practically pedophilia. I mean, really, who are they dressing that way for?

Crystal HW said...


MY daughter would not be in this routine for the costumes. They are not at an age where they understand what they are doing in a sexual sence. The thoguht of this being on Youtube just makes my skin crawl. Any child porn lover/liker/investigator could see this and it makes me sick!

Those girls have SKILLS! They have ability and that alone would keep my attention. Those outfits blew me away in the reguards that I couldn't watch the whole thing. I felt sick, sad, and flabbergasted at the parents and instructors for putting them in those outfits and that situation. It was eyepopping in a bad way for sure.

SO SAD!!!!

MommyLovesStilettos said...

This is exactly why I don't allow my daughter to own Bratz dolls. They look like street walkers and I'll do anything in my power to make sure that my daughter knows that isn't appropriate to dress like that.

AmberRay said...

I agree. I understand that dance costumes are often form fitting but do they have to show skin? I would love my daughter to be in dance class but I would not like her to wear these kind of outfits.

Nacia said...

The slutty costumes should go (that's up to the parents) but the dancing is bad-ass.



Insanitykim said...

Yeah the costumes, and even some of the moves, and the song, are over the top. I would never let my 8 or 9 year old do it. Man I am happy we don't have TV and my kids don't listen to music other than their approved CD's! (yes I said CD's) ;)

Brittany said...

I heard about this video on the radio the other day. It's even worse than I thought! I just don't understand...

More than anything, this video just makes me sad. Children don't get time to just be kids anymore. Why are we in such a rush to make our kids grow up so quickly? Let them be innocent as long as possible! Once you lose your innocence, there's no going back.

Mia @ Finding Balance said...

It makes me sick that people actually allow their children to wear these things. Parents should be speaking up and putting their feet down. Not cute. Not pretty. Besides the horrible message you're sending kids by advocating they wear these things and give them to them....people need to realize that they're doing nothing less than enticing pedophiles and others who have "issues" that would harm others...(sorry, I'm a former victim advocate).

Missy said...

I completely agree with you. I would not be taking my daughter to a dance studio that put costumes on her like that. Let my kids be kids.

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