Tuesday, June 25, 2013

My Views on Modesty.

 I'm about to touch on a hot button topic (couldn't resist the pun sorry).

   I came across this article years back and oh how I laughed, but it's honestly not a laughing matter. Many of the statements in this article even though it was a parody, hit close to home. For I grew up worrying about (and hearing) such similar statements from not only men but especially the women around me!

   Ever since Jessica Rey's video became popular it's revived the modesty debate all over my social media news feeds and elsewhere. It's funny how my views on modesty have changed as I've grown older. They used to be a lot more harsh and conservative although growing up I still got flack since my views were always a little more liberal than those around me. I personally have my own convictions about modesty and I understand that mine does not suit everyone. My stance and the way I approach my wardrobe can be summed up neatly in a quote by Emma Watson (one classy dame in my opinion). She said: "I find the whole concept of being ‘sexy’ embarrassing and confusing. If I do an interview with photographs people desperately want to change me - dye my hair blonder, pluck my eyebrows, give me a fringe. Then there’s the choice of clothes. I know everyone wants a picture of me in a mini-skirt. But that’s not me. I feel uncomfortable. I’d never go out in a mini-skirt. It’s nothing to do with protecting the Hermione image. I wouldn’t do that. Personally, I don’t actually think it’s even that sexy. What’s sexy about saying, ‘I’m here with my boobs out and a short skirt, have a look at everything I’ve got?’ My idea of sexy is that less is more. The less you reveal the more people can wonder." 

    That right there is my personal view on modesty and dressing. For myself, I like to dress from a less is more perspective. I don't wear bikini's because I'm not comfortable in displaying my body that way for anyone but my husband (at least at this point in my life). However I do not think it's acceptable or right to shame women into dressing from head to toe clothing because they have to "keep the men from stumbling." That makes it sound like men are animals who have no self control over themselves. A woman can be dressed as modestly as possible and still get raped. A man is going to look if he wants to look regardless of the other person and what they are wearing. This goes for women as well because we do it too (even though people like to ignore that). We have hormones and are attracted to people too! *cough cough* Robert Downey Jr. ;)  However there is a difference between attraction and lust. 

    I can't tell you how many times growing up I was afraid to let loose and enjoy myself swimming, playing games or whatever because I knew there were people eyeing me to make sure the wind didn't blow my ankle long skirt up too much, or my tee shirt wasn't too low cut to make the boys look at my non existent (and still basically nonexistent) breasts. And oh how I hurt for the girls whose mothers wouldn't let them wear anything even slightly pretty or attractive for fear it would be immodest. It would be 90 degree weather and these girls would be in ugly frumpy sweaters and long jean skirts. 

    Now if you want to wear those things go for it, but you should never be forced into it. Our culture when it comes to modesty likes to blame everything on the woman and her body which made many of us girls growing up ashamed of ourselves when we had no reason to be. I knew many girls who would stand with their arms crossed across their chest because they were so self conscious about their breasts, worried their dress skimmed across their rear too tight, the list goes on. 

    I came across an article today that very eloquently states my views on modesty and body shaming. It's a really great article and I hope you'll read it and it will make you think! No one should be ashamed of their body, but be happy in what they are comfortable in. 

"The truth is, a man can choose to objectify a woman whether she’s wearing a bikini or a burqa. We don’t stop lust by covering up the female form; we stop lust by teaching men to treat women as human beings worthy of respect."

   Regardless of what stance you take, the most important thing is that we don't shame our fellow women if they choose to dress differently from ourselves. All that does is promote insecurity, bitterness, and unhappiness instead of encouraging (and lecturing in self righteousness is NOT encouragement) and loving each other in Christ and isn't that the most important commandment of all? 

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