Opening my eyes to Modesty.... : LUSENET : Country Families : One Thread

This may very well be a loaded subject, but I feel I need to write it here. I am a 28 yr old mother of 4, who grew up in a big city. My husband and I (and our children ) moved "out to the country" because we knew that the social impact on us and our children, was more then our shoulders could bare. We could never, ever go back now-it has been 6 years, and life is wonderful. Just recently however, the Lord spoke to me when I was in Walmart of all places. I was looking around me, and everywhere it seemed I turned, there was another woman dressed in a way that made even my little girls uncomfortable. This bothered me, and as we got to the van my husband said to me "I don't think I'll go in with you anymore, I'll just stay in the van with the kids". We talked about it all the way home (nearly an hours drive). That night I slept terribly. Something was on my heart, and I wasen't sure what. In the morning, I found myself very carefully selecting what I would wear. My husband came out of the office soon after, and commented on how "lovely" I looked in my long skirt and blouse. This affected me deeply, as I am only 28-and still have many modern "young fashionable" friends. The next day I did the same thing, dressed very carefully, as well as my two young daughters (6 and 4). My husband, every time he was around us would hug and kiss "his girls" and remark on how we looked, so nice and modest. My girlfriend and her family came over that night. She was dressed in very nice *tight* black pants, with a low cut *tight* shirt....and never before had I noticed it being inappropriate. But it bothered me so much, not to mention that I was actually worried that my husband would see that-then me all covered with "nice clothes".

I started thinking about how much younger the girls were getting, and how they were dressed so ..scarcely. And how men are lured by this terrible act of deceit. I decided that I would not, could not be a part of that. I went to my closit, and took out all of the things that were above my knee (there were lots) all tops that were too revealing, as well as most of my pants-because they fit a little too well. Since this has happened, I made a decision that I would be the light that my family can focus on, especially when we are out. Soon after, we were in walmart, my husband pushing a cart behind me - when suddenly I feel his hand on my shoulder. He whispers in my ear " you are being noticed for your modesty". He was so proud of me then..he'd truley taken notice of the serious decision I'd made. Do you know friends, that since then, I have had so much more self esteem..I know that I am contributing to something that is so terribly lost on todays world. Modesty. It is simple, beautiful...and it cannot hurt anyone. I was afraid that modesty might turn my husbands eyes to another who had no trouble showing off...but just the opposite. Every woman knows how great she feels when she is dressed up to go somewhere special. I now do it everyday at home. I can muck out the horses in a dress, garden...and there is something so peaceful and refreshing about it. It is natural! You just wait to see the shine in your husbands eye.

My daughters are little girls again! The old "take off your dress before you go out to play" has left us permanently. They climb trees and ride horses in their dresses. What is fabric but meant to be washed? My sons (ages 3 and 8) are proud of their mom and their sisters.

I could not ask for anything more.

I thank the Lord for this insight, and pray that this may help someone out there.


-- Aimee Gosse (, April 25, 2002


My daughters are 10, 7 and 3 1/2. I discuss often with them how sad it is, that girls like Britney Spears feel the need to show their bodies off to everyone in the world, and how (I believe) God wants us to treat our bodies with respect, and be circumspect about how we dress. We are not to the point of wearing dresses only, I do like my shorts in the 105 degree Okie summers, but I do not wear tight things of any sort and will not allow the girls to dress like tramps. I am sad little girls can't be little girls any more in so much of today's "society".

-- Julie (, April 25, 2002.

Good for you! I am so proud of my DIL..she too feels that young women now days tend to dress like they are going to bars instead of out shopping..she is always dressed modestly and she is a very attractive young lady! My oldest daughter is the same way....there is no need to flaunt what is underneath....personally, the reason I always wear dresses is because it is my personal belief, and I stress personal, that women look better in dresses and skirts when they have, shall we say, an 'ample" rear end? LOL.....To me, nothing is more unbecoming than someone who takes more than a size 6 in one of those stretch pants things with a sloppy top on out in public. Having said that, there are many, many women who are very modest-appearing in a nice pair of slacks or jeans and a decent blouse.....Modesty can be accomplished in a variety of ways, yet I agree that a dress looks the best. When my kiddos were little, I loved to see the girls in dresses..there is just soemthing about a little sweetheart in a dress that cannot be matched....lately, it seems that there ar eso many parents who think it is OK to allow there small children to dress like Madonna...Neil and I were horrified the other day to see a 4 or 5 year old girl in the supermarket actually wearing a fake bra on the outside of her shirt!!!!!! Good grief!

-- lesley (, April 25, 2002.

Thank you Aimee, and ladies for bringing up this topic.

As a guy, it is one that I have thought about recently, in fact it was yesterday when I went to get some groceries. Walking through the store was an adventure in strangely dressed people, especially some of the women. I can't believe what some women wear in public.

I would be embarrased to be seen with someone dressed like that, much less being the one who wore the "outfit".

I think that there are some outfits that are appropriate. A modest dress, knee length or longer is nice. Slacks are ok as long as they are not skin tight.(You know the business suit for women slacks, not the fancy name brand jeans that are 2 sizes to small.) Stretch clothing should be outlawed for anyone over 12 years of age. Very few women in my opinion look good in them, and if they do is it a good thing to be in public dressed like that???

Tops that leave little to the imagination, to me, are a sign of someone who really needs love (attention) from someone, and is not getting it. I usually feel sad when I see someone dressed like this, because I know there is a reason for this display. I personally don't think it is attractive, but I am only 1 man.

My wife dresses modestly, mostly longer dresses, and occasional jeans which are not tight. I guess maybe I am spoiled by her way of dressing, but I truly think it is best. Hope you can all follow this train of thought. (Sometimes my train gets de-railed.)

Talk to you later.

-- Bob in WI (, April 25, 2002.

Aimee- That is sooooo great! We came to this decision years ago and have never looked back! :) You are truly a beautiful person! Hugs, Jenn

-- Jenn (, April 25, 2002.

Thanks for bringing it up Aimee. I thought about this several times and had intended to start a thread on the topic, but couldn't get the words right. Especially a thanks to Bob, for taking the time to give us a man's perspective. It is very encouraging!

The only reason someone would not practice modesty is for attention. I think the world is so starved for love that the love is getting mixed up with attention. Very sad indeed.

-- Karen (, April 25, 2002.

I don't believe I COULD work outside in a long dress, I would step on the hem. Coordination is NOT my strong point, hehehehehe! As for working in a short dress, it is too risky to bend over. Chalk me up as a vote for pants or whatever works and is comfortable. Personably I am not bothered by people wearing very little, we all came into the world that way. A body is just a body. I cover up more than some simply because it's a nuisance to be stared at. Some people find it flattering to always attract attention; I am rather on the quiet side and I don't like that much attention from strangers.

-- Terri (, April 25, 2002.

wow Lesley, that's out there for sure. What in the world are her parents thinking? But you know, I wonder where this concept of modesty/covering up comes from. I wonder why people believe God wants them to cover up what he made? It seems to me like it would be a concept that came from somewhere else.

I'm not trying to change anyones mind because these things are a personal choice. I've known Amish and Mennonites but on the other hand I've been on a nude beach, neither extreme seemed wrong to me. In my view, the human body is nothing to be offended by.

I wouldn't let my daughter dress like a streetwalker either but most of todays styles of clothing don't really fall into that in my opinion. Where do you draw the line? In some cultures the women wear veils or burkas. I don't think the average man is lured by any kind of dress either. Most guys I know are turned off by a woman dressing trampy, but I don't consider hiphugger jeans and exposed belly button to be trampy looking for some women.

Sure there are times when you have to present a "professional" appearance but in your casual time, what's wrong with dressing as little as you please as long as it's not obscene for the situation? What about when you go swimming? I mostly just wonder where the concepts of modesty come from because manner of dress varies so much from culture to culture and throughout history.

-- Dave (, April 25, 2002.

Ah, what a breath of fresh air you are! It is so nice to see little girls in modest dresses, (and women too). As your girls get older, it will be harder to find long - enough skirts for their size. I have this problem with my 12 year old...anything long enough has a too big waistline. I put a size 14 skirt on her and it's way above her knee. I've taken to making skirts for them.

What's great is that since so few girls wear dresses, it's easy to find nice ones at thrift and consignment shops - worn once or twice for Christmas or Easter, I suppose. Have fun, and God bless.

-- Christina (, April 25, 2002.

Christina, We buy ours used and usually for only .25 at the "end of season" thrift store sale. If they are too wide but have good length, we take in a few inches straight up the back. We love the old 80s style prarie skirts the best! When you sit "indian style" in one, you can snuggle a child or animal right on your lap like your lap is a nest or something! :) I hope I explained that right! Jenn

-- Jenn (, April 25, 2002.

I'd have to disagree with the opinion that most people dress like that for attention. Tight pants on women have been around since the 60s and so common now that not many are paying attention to those details. It's just a style of dress for most people.

-- Dave (, April 25, 2002.

I have been very lucky. My daughter, 9, only wants to wear dresses. I buy them at a second hand store, ten at a time. They are usually only 1 or 2 dollars each because so many girls don't wear them anymore.

I got into quite a fight with the gym teacher when she was in public school. He wouldn't allow her to paticipate in gym class in a dress. I told him, in no uncertain terms, that dresses were appropiate clothing for girls and that she had better be allowed in gym from now on. I also said that if he thought there was a problem, then perhaps he needed to change the things he was having the children do in gym. Some of my friends had started making their daughters wear pants on gym days, but I told them to let them wear pants as it was their right. They did and there have been no more problems.

-- Gayle in KY (, April 25, 2002.

OOPS-That should have been- Let them wear DRESSES.

-- Gayle in KY (, April 25, 2002.

Oh, Dave....I will have to respectfully a woman myself.....doesn't matter how long tight pants have been around....women DO wear them for a reason, and it is not comfort! The only females that may be unaware of the results would be our aforementioned prepubescent daughters, who only know it is a "fashion" to emulate and are as yet unaware of stares. Women spend huge amounts of money on clothing and items that they believe will attract male attention, whether or not it does is beside the point.

As far as why a person would choose modesty, I don't think it is related to shame over a body, as much as it may be the cherishing of something that is to be kept for your mate only........just my opinion. Regards, Julie in OK

-- Julie (okwilk213@!, April 25, 2002.

well Julie, I'll agree with that to a point. When it's a chore to slide those jeans on then sure they're going to extremes. And yes some do wear them for show. But really, I think it's mostly just a style of dress. Lots of women who don't have a need to attract men dress that way. I'm not saying any style of dress is right or wrong. I'm saying it's a personal choice and I wonder why people get offended as long as it's not clearly obscene or "sloppy" as someone else put it. And where do you draw the line and who makes those standards? You can go as extreme as wearing a burka in covering up. I think it should be a personal choice and nobody should be insulted because they are wearing different clothes than what you'd choose to wear or can wear.

In gym class, doesn't a dress hinder physical activities such as gymnastics, running, etc? My daughter usually wears dresses to school but not on gym days. I'm not sure whether it's required or not but I would think the potential to have an embarrassing moment would exist with wearing a dress in gym, not to mention the hinderence when playing sports.

What about when you go swimming? You can only be so 'modest' in doing that. Is that an exception? I'm just curious how others look at these things. I really don't have much of an opinion other than it's a personal choice.

-- Dave (, April 25, 2002.

I have debated this subject with myself for years. Here are some of the thoughts I've had I know this post is long, and I'm sorry. But as I said, I've been thinking about it for years and still have mixed feelings about it.

-- Rebekah (, April 25, 2002.

I have to agree, Dave, I would never try and force anyone into a clothing choices....I just think it's sad when their identity becomes wrapped around how their body is percieved, and I think youngsters have a harder time making judgement calls in that regard. I wear a bathing suit like anyone else and personally couldn't wear a dress to run but that's me. Regards, Julie in OK

-- Julie (, April 25, 2002.

You go sisters! The only problem I have is that since I am tall I have to do a lot of sewing and I think that it is getting harder to find decent material at Joanne's. Most of their fabric seems to be for crafts and teen girls' prom dresses.

Once my neice informed me that I dress too old fashioned which, of course, meant "weird". She told me this wearing a hotty t-shirt which looked like maybe it would fit a doll. Of course, I just laughed. Me, weird?

-- vicki in NW OH (, April 25, 2002.

I forgot to add that I do wear jeans when I do things like climb into trees to prune, or when I have to use a ladder for something, or on a day like today when it was really windy.

-- vicki in NW OH (, April 25, 2002.

My daughter was up in a tree this afternoon and, with 4 brothers, I certainly would have known if her bloomers were showing. So would the neighbors. Remember, "I see London. I see France..."? She has worn dresses all her life and has learned how to do everything without showing everything. Let me reiterate, too- it is HER choice. I have bought her pants. She won't wear them.

-- Gayle in KY (, April 25, 2002.

Bravo to you for making this decision on your own, Aimee. I know women who dress modestly, but usually is has a connection to either their religious affiliation (church says they should), or the fact that their husband wants them to dress this way (husband gets mad if they don't)- they have not come to this opinion on their own. It is wonderful that you and your daughters have done this without the influence of others, and it is even more wonderful that your male family members support and encourage you for your attention to modesty and morality.

-- Christine in OK (, April 25, 2002.

Oh Dave are you that naive?! Tight pants are SO uncomfortable! Do you Really think that women would dress that way if they didn't want attention? I dressed like a street walker when I was 16. I loved the way men's jaws would drop. Their eyes would get big and they would start babbling like babies. I craved the attention that I never got from my father and I got attention when I dressed like that. It only took getting pregnant to finally get his attention. Parents: Love your children. Show it by spending time with them. Hug them and tell them how much you love them before its too late.

-- buffy (, April 26, 2002.

Lets hear from Jerry Springer ! ! ! ! ! !

-- Stan (, April 26, 2002.

My girls do not like to wear clothes that are too tight, or revealing. I never have either. They dress very modestly compared to most of their friends. I don't think I will ever get used to seeing girls wearing tank tops with their bra straps showing!!!! When I was young I always wore loose shirts, being the victim of a large chest, which caused most boys to stare, so I got into the habit of not drawing attention to myself. I hated them looking at me in that way. When I went swimming I wore a t-shirt over my swim-suit. So modesty has always been on my mind.

I do wear mostly jeans and shorts in the summer, but they are not too tight, or too loose. Working with horses, gardening, etc... I just find it more practical. I don't wear dresses mostly because of the difficulty of finding a proper fit, but I do wear skirts.

I am glad you brought this up, it is interesting to see others ideas on the subject...

-- Melissa in SE Ohio (, April 26, 2002.

I don't own a dress! And, I think it's terribly immodest for girls to try to play some games or climb trees in dresses that show their underwear. How embarressing! I vividly remember, as a child, having to wear dresses and how hard it was to have fun while trying to be modest. It made me think that my body was something to be ashamed of. And I wondered why boys could wear pants and whose idea it was that woman had to wear dresses or skirts. That said, I dress to both look attractive and retain my dignity. Showing "everything you got" is cheap and tacky. A woman can look very "sexy" fully covered. Revealing clothing leaves nothing to the imagination.

-- Ardie/WI (, April 26, 2002.

I quite honestly don't even know where to start! I'll start with the comment many made about little girls climbing trees. First of all, you need to look past just the clothes. What (beyond modesty) do they say about the person? My daughter would climb a tree in a dress- but she is 6 yrs old, and with her sister also. Am I saying that when she is 12 or 16 she will even WANT to climb trees? And with a bunch of boys under the tree? NooOOOoo! The kind of girls (I believe) that wear dresses, will be taught the dignity of what is appropriate behavior, and when. On a windy day...I may very likely wear pants under my dress. (Or skirt). Am I ashamed of my body? Not at all. You go ahead and see the security level of the women who dress to show all. Get to know them, and THEN tell me that doesn't show insecurity, or lack of love as someone mentioned. A cherished woman (again, just my opinion) has absolutly no need to impress other men, or society. I agree that there is nothing wrong with pants, and for some they likely ARE more comfortable (though I can't see how). I do not think a woman immodest for wearing's much more then that, and I think you all know what I mean.

How can you think men are not lured by sexual dress? Men are you must know (Dave) being one. Think just for a moment of the men who have serious trouble turning away from sexual images. They are out with their wives and children, when these scantily dressed women walk by...and he looks. How does HIS wife feel? What messages is he sending to his children about how he sees his wife? You must know how things have changed in our society over the years. Less has become better. Then again, sexual crimes have multiplied in immeasurable numbers. This "change" in me is new, and this is my first summer having to contemplate what do do regarding a bathing suit. We have a wedding to go to in the Bahamas this June, and we are looking for a private B&B where it will be just us.

Am I extreme? Likely. I would rather protect my girls (and in turn my boys) from having to accept things being the way they are, just because thats where the world is today. I teach my children every day that it's okay to be different. We will not follow that path that teaches "what works for you is great..." We got away from that when we moved where we are, and began homeschooling.

Is it not time to take back our world? You all must know, that this is entirely my opinion, I am not critizing those who do not agree, or wear pants etc.

God Bless Aimee.

-- Aimee Gosse (, April 26, 2002.

LOL! I love the comment about men being visual! Oy vey! My DH is just like his father was...only his eyes move. It's so funny watching him when some young thing strolls by, wearing something that reveals everything. Only the eyes move! Then, I remind him that his granddaughter is almost that age! And, by the way, I like to look at men, scantily dressed or otherwise! As for tight pants on either males or females, if it looks good, do it, but do it with common sense!

-- Ardie/WI (, April 26, 2002.

When my girls wear dresses casually, like in the summer, they have always worn a pair of shorts under them. Just a little tip.

I try to never look at a man in any way in public that would make my husband feel insecure, and he does not do this to me either. Part of the vow!! We also made a choice not to dance with other people once we were married. Like at weddings or parties. We have friends who do and I just don't understand it... Once you are married you have made your choice!!!! I prefer to give my husband my attention and it is a way to make the marriage stronger. My husband has never once given me a reason to doubt his committment and I give him no reason to doubt mine. I first laid eyes on him when I was 14 and I have never looked back!!!!!

-- Melissa in SE Ohio (, April 26, 2002.

You know. In see where you are all coming from. I am most comfortable in jeans and t-shirt. However, for work I am usually expected to wear the whole dress or businessy atire. I don't usually wear make up but only on special occasions. My girls usually wear pants, because that is what is given to us. In summertime I buy sleaveless summer dresses, for the girls, just because it is so hot. Once they get a little older I will discuss how clothing makes them look. I have found that guys have always appreciated a woman more if she is dressed properly than someone with there body's hanging out allover the place.

-- Melinda (, April 26, 2002.

When I was a kid, we had to wear dresses to school, and we always put shorts underneath on gym days. In the winter when it was really cold, we wore those tights underneath that are like the knee high sock material. Even when we weren't in school we always wore dresses. I guess I never did get used to wearing slacks or jeans much. Come to think of it, the school I went to was the last school in the area to let girls wear slacks.

Some of the schools around here are having a terrible time getting the girls to dress according to the dress code. The principal was sending so many home to change every day that finally he just bought some big t-shirts and now has them put the t-shirt over what ever they have on.

-- vicki in NW OH (, April 26, 2002.

You all should live in San Fransico for a while, Nothing would shock you after that. I wear pants most of the time, as I have really bad veins I don"t want to show. I always wear a big shirt. And I make sure I don't have spots on my clothes. I see women who have tee shirts on that are dirty, and pants. Now I think that is far more offensive. I wear a dress if there is a need, but then wear hose. I hate those baggy pants the boys are wearing that show there shorts.

-- Irene texas (, April 26, 2002.

I like comfortable pants, shirts, and shoes. Dresses only if I want to wear them, not for someone else. Shoes have to be able to be run in, in case of an emergency (crime or whatever), or I don't buy them. Dresses, by and large, are not practical.

I think the requiring of dresses and/or makeup is an unaccceptable form of control placed on women by men, and unfortunately, a lot of women have bought into it.... You can still be modest in pants and shirts.

-- GT (, April 26, 2002.

I'm over 50 & when I grew up all girls & women wore dresses every where---- I grew up with my Dad in the pastures on horse back & in the barnyard- or on a tractor--at that time there were no such thing as Girls brands of jeans!!! ha! Am I old or what??? ha!

So we wore unionall---those things that cover up eveything you have on--or else bib-overall-as it was tooo cold to wear a dress-helping on the farm---or in the pastures--etc/etc/---plus was not safe--

By the time I was a teenager /I could buy boys jeans that didn't fit really well--but I could wear them---& be covered up for what ever I was doing & be safer with the equipment---etc/etc/--

I'm still a "tomboy" & I still wear a lot of jeans----not only on the home front--but also when we go somewhere---& at my age sure not tight!!!

But I have plenty of nice dresses I wear also---I wear a lot of those pants that come to midcalf in the summer time---no shorts for this old woman!!!! ha!

We started someting in our area this past year once a month we have "tea" at a cafe owned by a friend of mine--- We have hats & gloves & we serve tea & anyone of any age can come & dress & for tea in the afternoon---

Why I bought this up---is that we have ladies drive over 2 hours to come & have tea with us---everyone dresses up & wears a hat & gloves & we have a fancy tea party---many women bring their grandaughters & we teach them the proper way to have tea---etc/etc/etc/etc/--- It is really teaching them the proper way/ of how we use to do things- --fancy table settings--fancy tea sandwiches--proper eitquette- modesty--etc/etc/etc/etc/etc/etc/--

Everyone loves it!!!!!!!!!! And ya all know how I ramble--but what I think we are doing is filling the need /that many want to get back to how things use to be instead of "showing it all"---"no manners"--- "not knowing how to do things properly"---etc/etc/etc/etc/--nore class---more formal---more taste/ as well!!!! Did any of what I said make sense?????????

-- Sonda in Ks. (, April 26, 2002.

Sonda you brought up a good point. It's manners and dignity and knowing what is proper and what isn't. And may I add, good taste.

-- Ardie/WI (, April 26, 2002.

I have to laugh at the comment made about it being a form of control over women. Is there anyone anywhere suggesting that this is a MUST do thing? Has anyone said that you MUST wear dresses and skirts to be modest!? No!

I do cherish my role as a woman. I do not need to prove myself stronger then a man. We ARE different from men, we DO have more that we should conceal. Why compare ourselves to men that DO take their shirts off in public? It almost seems a very immature attitude to do the..."well so and so does this...."

We can make our own choices, of course. Do what YOU think..not what everyone else is doing!

-- Aimee Gosse (, April 26, 2002.

I don't think anyone thought you were saying that it "must" be done, but talking about societies where it is required... I think each person is entitled to make their own choices, with common sense and dignity,and we can learn to respect those choices!

-- Melissa in SE Ohio (, April 26, 2002.

I think the point Rebekah made at the end of her post has alot of merit. I know for a fact that some men control their wives dress out of insecurity. And some women have a problem with other womens dress for some of the same reasons, and jealousy too. Just being realistic and pointing out it could very well be a factor in some of these things. I don't doubt for a minute that's where some of these standards originated from. In some cultures, what Rebekah mentioned it's the basis of womens dress. I think she made some very good points about the difference between what's acceptable for a men yet not acceptable for a woman.

-- Dave (, April 26, 2002.

I wish I could recall the verses(I'll look for it tonight)that says women are not to wear clothes inappropriate to their sex. I think it is in corinthians somewhere. I rarely wear anything but long skirts. The only exception to that is when I am in the woods working with a chainsaw. Several of the posters above say that they can't work in a skirt. To me a skirt is the handiest thing to work in! I wear nice full ankle length(or thereabouts) skirts....they make wonderful harvest baskets when you need to carry something. I can do everything in a skirt that I can in pants. I milk a cow, do carpentry work, drive tractors, ride bikes, fix fence, etc. There are times when the hem would drag the ground while I'm bent over in the garden or such....I've learned where to tuck it to keep it tidy. It is soooo much cooler and more comfortable. It is even warmer in the winter if you wear some kind of flannels or long johns underneath. You will notice a change in people attitudes when you start dressing more modestly...especially from the men. If you look and act like a lady you are far more likely to be treated like a lady.

-- Amanda (, April 26, 2002.

Gee, I kinda like looking at men without shirts.........!

-- Ardie/WI (, April 27, 2002.

Amanda, but in those days men wore robes (caftans?) also, which were for all intents and purposes, dresses....

I agree with being modest (although here and there I seem to be seeing in some of the posts the old "you're asking for it" attitude regarding scanty dressing. I'd have hoped we as a society had gotten beyond that by now....I don't want to be treated like a lady per se, I'd rather be treated as an equal.

Although I'm a firm believer in only asking of others what you would do yourself. We both believe in comfort, so comfort it is.

-- GT (, April 27, 2002.

Aimee, thank you for sharing your experience. I have been reading this thread and the various responses, trying to decide if I should participate. It is my opinion that each woman's experience with the modesty issue is different, and the Lord speaks to us each in a different way. Twenty years ago if anyone would have told me that I would be wearing dresses all the time (I only owned one and it was of the type only found in sleazy places) and that I would wear a head covering, I would have thought they were out of their minds.

When I was very newly in recovery from the muck and mire of alcohol and drug abuse, my sponsor took me to a prayer meeting to meet some of her friends. They talked about Jesus and I went forward to accept Him in my life that very tight jeans and a see through blouse. He took me just as I was. Year by year and bit by bit He has shown me the error in my life and helped me clean it up. For me wearing dresses and a head covering was at the hand of my Savior. It was much more of a matter of obedience to Him than to please other humans or seek anyone's approval. I did not understand it at the time, but just knew that He asked me too. I have never felt that it was for every woman. He uses us all in different ways and for different people. I know many women who are much more spiritual and holy than I will ever be that wear jeans, t-shirts etc.

We must always remember that man looks at the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart. Some of us with tremendous rebellious spirits could never accept anything that was told to us by men. I was certainly one of those and am grateful that I can see that today.

Although I firmly believe that I now have the liberty to wear anything I chose, I chose to wear modest dresses and a head covering. We live among the Amish and I believe it would be a stumbling block to my relationship with them as we learn to love each other as brothers and sisters in Christ.

-- diane (, April 27, 2002.

I totally agree with Aimee. Before I say more, I only really wear dresses to church. I mostly wear jeans or pants and a casual shirt. The Bible does speak very clearly about modesty. I agree that we can wear whatever we want and still be saved, but that doesn't mean that we are in God's will for our lives. I believe that ladies should look like ladies. PERIOD! To me that doesn't necessarily mean a dress, but it does mean feminine looking attire. Now, at home I don't care. But, when we go out I want to look like a lady and teach my daughter the same. The way I see it.... what is the difference in wearing pants or having short hair? I have longer hair. Everyone has to find the "line" for themselves because it is not directly spelled out for us. I have friends that are of the UPC religion and HAVE to wear dresses. They even swim in dresses!!! To me that is more inappropriate than a modest swimsuit. The swimsuit issue is hard. I have a pool and at home with noone else here I will wear a 2 pc. When people are over or at the beach I wear a 2 pc. tank style or a 1 pc. I don't even let my 2 year old wear a 2 pc. in public.

Like someone said, even a dress can be indecent and unlady like. So, the issue really isn't dresses or not, it's modesty or not. EVERYONE should dress modestly!!!! What that is will be different for everyone. But, any tight, exposing or see through type clothing is not modest. That can be argued but I honestly don't see how!

-- Rebecca (, April 28, 2002.

What a timely thread this is for me. As a married, religious, Jewish woman, I cover my hair in public with a scarf, kipah (small skullcap) or bandana, and I strive to wear modest dress - either comfortable pantsuits when I teach or (mostly) skirts. I rarely wear dresses, since I don't sew well and at 6' tall, skirts are more flexible and forgiving. I do wear t-shirts (although many religious Jewish women do not) in hot weather, and I reserve the right to wear jeans at home on my property for heavy, filthy work. Skirts and aprons look fine for that stuff, too, but I have jeans from my pre-marriage days, and I don't like to waste clothing. I don't think there are major tree climbing issues with skirts, if they are full and long - there's a lot of fabric there to cover a myriad of sins ;-).

I do wear pants, because I think that while male attire is forbidden to me, that the notion that pants are inherently male dress is archaic. But I prefer long skirts, nice shirts, aprons if at work, and a head covering. Because I teach at a university, I work hard to make sure that my clothing is modest, attractive, but does not draw overly much attention to my appearance in any sense - I don't want to be recognized for my body or my modesty - I want to be seen as neat and appropriate within the strictures of my religious beliefs, and to have people recognize me for my intellect and my abilities as a teacher.

I would definitely consider the possibility that your daughters may be climbing trees in their teens - I was a tomboy, and preferred trees to boys for many years. I think it is important, if modest dress is being taken on, that utility, comfort and athleticism be taken into account in children's clothing - a denim jumper, long cotton skirt or the like is fine to play in. A short skirt or dressy material makes it tougher on girls to explore nature and their world than boys.

-- Sharon in NY (, April 29, 2002.

On this subject, does anyone out there have patterns for modest dress clothing?

-- Sharon in NY (, April 29, 2002.

-- AngieM2 (, April 29, 2002.

You have made me think long and hard ,I dress my girl on the conserative side .Even the 16 year old is not allowed to dess to trendy .They do wear pants .I have to admitt I do sometimes dess for the attention , and i do know that is not right .I should not need someone elses option on my self worth .I just like when they say "you cant have 4 kids" or gee "and you still have that figure ? " I have alot of my self worth wrapped up in my weight , a size 6 isn't ok I want to be a 4 .I am working on it I know it is wrong so please don't blast me .

-- Patty {NY State} (, April 29, 2002.

Patty, we've all taken in our culture's emphasis on female beauty - I can't imagine that there is a woman on this forum who doesn't appreciate a compliment about their appearance, or work at times to gain the approval of others. I think the distinction that *I* would make (others might feel differently) is that my notion of modesty makes me want to be appreciated not for my sexual attractiveness but for my beauty. It is a fine distinction, but an important one - think about many women you must know in daily life who are just beautiful, but whose beauty is not sexualized. A lot of older women have got that down perfectly, and a few lucky younger ones. I would like people to look at me and see that is pleasurable to look at, has character and is unique. I don't want to be looked at as a potential sexual partner, or as someone who is exposing her sexuality to others. I don't think wanting your body to look nice, or wanting to look young and beautiful is at all bad, or shameful. We all have different notions of what constitutes modesty, and in my opinion, it doesn't mean so much hiding your light under a bushel as making sure that the right light is shining from you.

-- Sharon in NY (, April 29, 2002.

Sorry the "r" key isn't working and I did not proof read .Sharon you make a nice destinction .I do not dress like a slut .My pants and shirts are not baggie but not skin tight either ( ok maybe some jeans ae a little tight)I don't wear low cut stuff either .Gave me more to think about .

-- Patty {NY State} (, May 02, 2002.

I am 50 and I love my blue jeans and they aren't baggy. I am very modest. If I had to wear a dress every day, I would croak. It's not so much the dress it's those darn nylons, always cutting off my circulation. Giggle. Comfort is my bag. Oh yes and I refuse to wear high heels, it's clogs for me, as I said "Comfort is my bag". Thought I might add a bit of humor. Oh yes and after 32 years of marriage hubby is putting on casual shorts when he comes in at night. He always was embaressed about his white farmer legs. Now he says, " Oh who cares". Giggle.

-- Marilyn in CO (, May 02, 2002.

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