Side Stepping the Two Piece

March 17, 2010

BLOG, FAMILY, LEAH

My eight-year-old wants a two-piece bathing suit for this summer.

I have a problem with this. I’m trying not to, but I do.

There is a big part of me that thinks it’s a little pervy for a young girl to wear a two-piece. Especially the triangle top ones. Those triangles are meant for breasts. Breasts are not part of an eight-year-old. It’s just a little too – I don’t know – sexual for me.

And I know that’s not the point of why she wants a two-piece, but good lord she’s got the REST OF HER LIFE to wear one. Why do we need to start now?

These little girls are BOMBARDED with sexual images day in and day out. I’ve been pretty lucky in that her school is not full of “hooker chic” dressed peers – but she’s clearly seen it somewhere. (And, yes, I do wear a bikini but I haven’t busted mine out yet this year.)

I’m thinking of a little compromise and letting her do a tankini this year. I’m trying not to make this a big thing that turns into a larger discussion that turns into a body image mess. Maybe that’s the middle ground?

Am I nuts?

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8 Responses to “Side Stepping the Two Piece”

  1. Dia Says:

    Yikes! I hadn’t even thought of the upcoming wardrobe milestones … I’m thankful you’re going ahead of me on the mothering-a-girlchild journey. Hopefully I can learn from your wisdom! I agree with you on the whole bikini thing for an 8 year old. I probably won’t let my daughter wear one until she is proficient with a firearm, and can find a waterproof gun and holster to wear with the biniki.

    Reply

  2. Jessica Gottlieb Says:

    We do tankinis for a number of reasons.

    Firstly, like you said, it’s modest.

    Secondly, and importantly, it’s easier to go to the bathroom.

    Thirdly, they last a whole season, the one piece suits, when the get too small, start looking very high cut, the tankini will only show an inch of flesh, not sexy, just kids.

    My daughter is 11, she wears tankinis and it’s not a negotiation.

    Reply

    • Pammer Says:

      Oh, how I remember the bathroom speediness need…

      We’ve spent some time talking about “private bodies” and that since G-d made your body you should take great care of it and not treat it like a big ol’ showy party – and she gets that. Mostly.

      And, like you, this is not a negotiation – just an opportunity for her to have SOME say in the matter without compromising the larger messages.

      And you are SPOT ON re: the growing. GREAT point.

      Reply

  3. Kathryn in NZ Says:

    So agree on the tankini being great for not growing out of too soon. I also prefer them for their greater coverage – down here under the ozone hole we go for as much coverage we can get for quite a different reason! They stay on better too.
    And no, you’re not nuts. At all.

    Reply

  4. elz Says:

    Our preschool actually requested 2 pieces for last summer (there is a pool at school). I almost went ballistic for the same reasons you stated until they said the reason: it is easier for the little ones to take just the pants part off when they need to use the restroom rather than take a whole suit on and off. I went for the tankinis and larger coverage 2 pieces.

    I totally get what you are saying.

    Reply

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