I don’t like shopping centres. When I have to go, I steamroll through as quickly as possible. Head down. Blinkers on.
But this time, a window display by a major kid’s retailer stopped me dead in my tracks. Even though I only caught a glimpse of this bandage dress, it was enough to make me double back and take a closer look.
This is a sexy dress but it’s targeted squarely at children. It’s a mini-me version of what’s currently in fashion for women. I think it implies that it’s ok for kids to act and dress older than they are.
Trading on flesh and flirting is a common currency in our society. But the sexualisation of children is an unnecessary exchange flogged by music, magazines, fashion and the cult of celebrity.
As a parent I know that one of my greatest challenges will be feeding our children’s natural curiosity for things that make them feel grown-up. A curiosity that every instinct in me will be want to moderate. And while it might sound awfully old fashioned, I want to protect their innocence. There’s plenty of time to dress in trashy polyester – not when you’re 8 years old.
Over to you – do you think I’ve got all worked up over nothing? Is this a parenting challenge you’re navigating? I’d love it if you shared your thoughts…