Monday, September 28, 2009

Nipple Tassles & Thongs…..For Toddlers

Now that I have your complete attention! Not sure if you’ve heard, but there is a company called Twisted Twee that has designed clothing for youngsters. They are a bit different from other baby clothes retailers because their designs are….…well crass and x-rated. For instance, one baby T-shirt says "I've done F@*k all day!" (This is the edited version). Then there are alphabet shirts that say “B is for Beer,” “C is for Condom,” while X is for a pig having sexual relations with a duck. Huh? Yes…that’s right parents, not only can you purchase these wonderful T-Shirts…you can get jerseys for your tots that have nipple tassles attached to the appropriate spot. Yup! Stripping is hot even for babies! NOT!!!!!!!!!!!

Why in the world would someone create products like this for children? Well, the maker claims that the designs were created in response to her “distaste at seeing mini versions of sexy clothes on young children.” Hmmm….it seems to me that there are much better and more productive ways to contest the cultural trend to sexualize children’s clothing! As if the half shirts, uber short shorts, and skimpy mini-skirts on tweens weren’t enough, now some knuckle-heads will want to buy this junk for their babies!

So let’s be honest, the only reason why retailers are selling these items is because there is a market for them. Therefore, if you don’t buy it…they won’t sell it. However, according to Teen Research Unlimited, in 2006 youngsters between 12-19-years-old spent $179 billion on products ranging from clothing to toys and snacks. Targeting children at a younger age ensures that retailers will have loyal consumers buying their products for a longer period of time. Thus, there seemingly IS a market for this stuff. But there does not need to be!

Let’s think about what message we are sending to our young girls if we dress them in thongs(Yes…they do make baby thongs!), and nipple tassles. Do we want to create a nation of Lolitas, or do we as parents aspire to better. Our kids are inundated with visuals like Miley Cyrus dancing on a stripper pole at an awards show, or whatever image they see on any given reality tv show they choose to tune into.

With all this aversive stimulii, parents are challenged to work harder to counteract it. Don’t be afraid to monitor, edit, AND prohibit what your children are exposed to. What they wear, what they watch, and who they hang out with does impact who they are. So take a stand, and refuse to give your hard earned money to clothing companies that send the wrong message to children and families. REMEMBER…IF YOU DON’T BUY IT, THEY WON’T SELL IT!

Happy Parenting,

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