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Tweenage Trollops

Pop singer Miley Cyrus performing in São Paulo...

“This next song is called ‘I Swapped My Barbie for a Rhinestone Bra’.”

On my daily travels around the fine town of London, I have noticed a sudden eruption of a people attired in a way which offends my sensibilities; buttocks poking cheekily from denim hot pants, side-boob flashing slashed vests, belly revealing crop tops, wobbly high heels and French tipped manicures at the end of fake tanned limbs, lashings of gloopy lip gloss and eyes weighed heavy with claggy mascara. No, this isn’t a post-hen party walk of shame, it isn’t the gaggle of tuppeny hookers congregating around Soho, these are pre-teen girls.

Teenage girls are a law unto themselves and a disaster of fashions, but they have earned this right through decades of rebellion, Beatles and Biba. What we have now is bratitude, Bieber and pre-teens dressed like trollops. There’s no two ways about it, the streets are awash with girls barely able to fill a bra, revealing said bra to all and sundry, and even with youth and a less than conservative wardrobe on my side, I’m left slack-jawed in amazement and making the sort of tutting noises that leave you feeling you’ve aged irrevocably (Mother, I still refuse to acknowledge that I’ve turned into you just yet). I draw the line at uttering “back in my day”, but seriously, back in my d-errr, I mean…

It seems the greatest crime among the 10-13 year olds of the land isn’t cheating at conkers or stealing someone’s Glee pencil-top rubber, it is to actually look 10-13 years of age. Furthermore, it seems that among the girls of this age bracket, it would be a greater social gaffe to resemble anything close to a sexually innocent child – the more like something that fell off a lad’s mag casting couch, the better. Hemlines have risen faster than their years and almost as high as my disbelieving brows.

Why the rush to grow up and abandon childhood? What is wrong with looking, dressing and acting like a child, if indeed you are a child? It isn’t long before these young “ladies” (term used loosely) will be clamouring for youth restoring lotions and crêpey breast concealing necklines and wishing for just a few more years of trouble free cares.  Childhood is all too brief, sadly not as brief as the flash of briefs bestowed upon me by the gawky-limbed tweenager, struggling to contain her excitement and her giblets in a pair of sparkly hot pants on the Northern Line.

Sexualisation of children is a weighty subject and I in no way claim to have the final word on the topic. Yes, there are awful sexual predators out there, who may become aroused at the sight of a tween in a crop top, but these are people with a severe illness who would also view a toddler wearing a modest floral smock as a potential target. There is also the argument that by looking upon a pre-pubescent child as dressing “provocatively”, that I am the one with the problem, as they are but innocents, naively playing at dress-up and knowing nothing of what their costume conveys. However, when girls of this age make themselves up to look like girls of more advanced maturity, they are opening themselves up to the advances of boys (and scathing judgement of all) who can’t spot the difference between a confident and willing harlot and one merely playing at being one. The attention can, I’m sure, be quite damaging.

So who’s buying these wannabe strumpets their clothes? Who is allowing them out the house looking like Strip Joint Barbie or worse, the cast of Geordie Shore? Sure, the unstoppable Machiavellian media machine produces the images of “all grown up” Miley Cyrus and the rest of the gusset-flashing Mickey Mousers for tweens to admire, but it’s their parents who ultimately buy them the magazines, allow them to watch the shows and who provide the funds for the belly chains and boob tubes.

Children will want to grow up faster than their years allow – it’s all part of the thirst for knowledge, discovery and independence that even a toddler is cursed with, but that doesn’t mean their supervising adults have to give in and allow them to abandon their youth and fashion themselves into miniature Katie Price parodies. Sometimes it’s a parent’s job to say “no, just because little 10 year old Sauvignon-Jo’s mummy allows her to wear a thong protruding above her low rise ra-ra skirt, doesn’t mean that you can too”. It may not be “cool” to deny your child the option to look like a gutter harlot, but it’s most definitely a prerequisite of parenthood that you protect the little dears from the harsh realities of the world at large, from themselves and more importantly, from tasteless fashion.

You may be wondering how this all really affects me, as I do not have children of my own and have no intention of becoming a child therapist, so why should I have a vested interest in the attire of other peoples’? Well, over and above all the reasons regarding taste, decency and sexual predators, with all these pre-teens dressing like trollops, it makes it a damn sight harder for the rest of us to stand out in the whore parade!


About prettyfeetpoptoe

I live in London and have both my own legs so I am fortunate enough to get out and about on occasion. I form many views on the things that I see and do and love nothing better than a session of linguistic gymnastics in order to share these views.

25 responses »

  1. Jennifer W

    It’s a shame. Men would start catcalling & shouting the most vulgar things to me when I was 9. I still looked and dressed like a child (not that a girl being more developed makes it any more appropriate). It was difficult when tube tops and short-shorts were in style, because that’s all that was available, and was what everyone else was wearing, but also invited more catcalls and lewd behavior. It’s crippling to a young girl’s already shaky confidence to have to endure the excessive increase that comes with more skin showing. No, parents are forgetting to parent these days. Too many are trying to be pals with their kids.

    • Men catcalling at you when you were 9 ?
      What the ???!!!

      The sexualisation of children is ridiculous. Yes, the media can take a lot of the blame, as can the parents (I’m thinking that the media are the bigger problem though).

      I have heard it said that every generation thinks that the one coming up after it is more decadent and have it too easy, but just how many generations in the last 300 years had a widespread problem where children wanted to dress in a “sexy” manner?

      Makes me wonder if pre-teen girls had started wearing “sexy clothes” in the years just prior to the fall of Rome.
      It certainly seems like our society is headed down a similar decadent and hedonistic path.

      [/soapbox rant]

      • The media is a huge contributing factor, but I’m firmly of the opinion that it supplies according to demand – if parents didn’t buy their children the wares, they wouldn’t be on the shelves or in the magazines.

    • You poor thing! I’m sure it’s all very character building, but yes, it’s got to be incredibly hard to deal with at that age. I had certain attentions when I was 14 and felt very shaky about it. It’s not always avoidable but certainly hot pants and tiny crop tops won’t help the matter any.

  2. Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:

  3. Great post.
    Giggled over the ‘bratitude”. Gut it up parents – your kid may be innocently dressing to be “cool”, but others aren’t seeing it that way. So many strange people out there, it pays to be a bit cautious.
    Hate those new high heels for 2nd-3rd are they going to manage the playground….oh, they don’t have recess anymore….and about all those chubby kids?
    And there’s nothing wrong with the last (hilarious) statement. Isn’t that what mom meant when she said “No you can’t have/wear that…you have to have something to look forward to when you are older”?

    • If children are wearing their own high heels, then what fun would they have rooting through mummy’s wardrobe to play dress up?!

      And yes, that last line can be taken many ways but I’m fairly sure that’s what mother meant. 😉

    • Jennifer W

      The “new” high heels for 2nd-3rd graders? Girls had the plastic play ones when I was a kid (think they’re still sold now), but by 8 I actually had real high heels. It was the disco era, late 1970s. Clogs were “it”, and they were very high, even for kids, and high platform heels were too. What can I say? Seems insane to me now that any 8-year-old would have disco mules with a 3.5″ (9cm) heels with a 1/2″ (1.25cm) platform, that my parents would allow me to wear them, even to school, and that nobody made any sort of comment on it. But even I, as a bizarrely fashion-forward child for the time, refused to wear my mom’s 1960s micro-miniskirt when she offered it to me. It was just too short for me. I can hardly fathom why there was no parental comment on my ’80s spandex phase.

      So I can tell you, with the voice of experience, that it really is the parenting, and what they’re used to. Kid sees it in a magazine or on her fave singer and wants it? It’s a parent’s job to be the unpopular one and say no if it’s wrong. I don’t know what to do about the rebellion phase. I guess give in on lesser things so that your NO has more power later? Not a parent, so I can’t give an intelligent answer on that one, but my mom only once ever put her foot down and told me to change. I did unquestioningly, because she’d only done it once, so it must’ve been serious.

      • You do have to pick your battles and let the small stuff slide. Hard to be a parent these days
        We had plastic dress-up high heels – but those weren’t for school – not practical (maybe for special occasions if you had a “good” mom)
        The real concern by the schools are ankle injuries. The kids need to be able to run and move around – the schools here are trying to fight fat.

  4. These little girls are what models try to look like. A 10-year-old body is the ideal. So it makes sense to me that tweens get suckered into the stereotype. But, damn! There’s no freakin’ way we’ll ever catch up to that whore train!

    • Sad, isn’t it? The supermodels are trying to look like the 10 year olds, who are trying to look like the glamour models, who are trying to look like Barbie, who is… My head hurts.

  5. Reblogged this on Raising Jonah and commented:
    Dictating wardrobes choices for toddlers not to mention tweens is pretty difficult, and often ill advised if you don’t want a piercing and tattoo rebellion by the time they hit 15, (I let Jonah get a mohican at 6 because he wanted one for that reason – luckily his school is pretty liberal). However, I agree with the general sentiment of this beautifully penned article by the ever witty and more often than not, bang on the nail Pretty Feet Pop Toe, that slut walking for tweens is pretty lowbrow.

    But I’d like to make the point that’s there’s a whole evolutionary tranche of femaledom who blossoms early and needs to procreate before their looks and life chances (by which I mean social housing ) wilt forever. Or is that a bit classist? Meh. it’s true enough.

    • I’m afraid to say my mother managed to keep my giblets covered through my tweendom and I still hit the piercing gun at a tender age. Either I’m a hypocrite or the voice of experienced reason. Either way, thanks!

      • No probs! On my experience, where there’s a will there’s a way with kids. My Dad flipped out when I doubled pierced my earlobes aged 16 but his third wife makes him buy diamonds for her second piercings. Now that’s hippocracy in motion. Let kids experiment when their toddlers and they have nothing to rebel against later. That said, I’m fairly in favour of keeping them away from fags and booze, so I’m probably asking for it when they hit their teens.

  6. ahh finally you said it…if a male said this he would be cursed at…even if he had their best interests…only wish someone would stand out from the young’uns and tell them how ridiculous they looked…but then again that may make their life miserable….I wholeheartedly agree with you…gone are the days for elegance and true fashion….wonder if it will ever be like then….

    Ps-something along the same lines…fellow blogger

    • I think it’s every generations’ job to think they know best. I’m fairly certain generations above mine would baulk at the way I dressed at a 10 year old but pffft, what do they know!

      It doesn’t matter if it’s a man or a woman saying it, so long as they follow it up with a joke about the whore parade. 😉

  7. You said it! And I would also like to know who is allowing them to leave the house like that and who is buying their clothes? I know I wasn’t allowed to dress in super revealing clothing and I don’t even have strict parents, just sane ones who didn’t want their tween dressing like a hooker. I also had age appropriate limits put on my make up. I had been wearing make up for dancing since I was 4 so I was quite proficient with a mascara wand and all of the other goodies but that didn’t mean I was allowed to go out in full make up when I was 10. My mom said it looks strange on a kid unless you are performing and need it so that the stage lights don’t wash out your face. I got to wear only a tiny tiny bit for very special occasions and as I got older I got to wear gradually more – and it seemed reasonable to me! I also didn’t have a cell phone in high school, because as my 17 year old sister tells me, I’m really old.

    • Without parental rules such as yours (and mine), what is there to push against and give you the sense of teenage rebellion?! It’s no fun trying to get away with a raised hemline at 15 if you’ve been allowed to trot about in your undercrackers at 12.

  8. sophie king

    I agree with absolutely everything you have said!

  9. totally agree with you.. exactly the same thoughts hit me every time I walk out of the house and see these… well… let’s say girls..

  10. AnAmbivert

    Sometimes it’s a parent’s job to say “no, just because little 10 year old Sauvignon-Jo’s mummy allows her to wear a thong protruding above her low rise ra-ra skirt, doesn’t mean that you can too”.
    LOL. It’s funny because these are almost the same lines my parents used on me when I was going through this CRAZY phase. And BELIEVE me, I am glad that my parents stopped me. Now, when I am grown up (well, not so grown up) (I’m still 16) I can see it and make out the difference. I see my juniors and some “girls” of my age too wearing such clothes and make-up and I feel pity for them. I tried to talk to some of them but what did I get in return – You don’t know anything about fashion, world is a new place, you gotta look sexy and hot to attract guys and stuff like that.
    Now, I keep my distance from my them. Yes, I am friends with them but I don’t let them influence me.
    Thanks for sharing your views on a topic like this. 🙂


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