10 Bloggers Respond to Mrs. Hall's Letter with Thoughts on Slut-Shaming, Respect, and Selfies

BlogHer Original Post

Krystle at Gratuitous Double Dash brings up other vastly important things to teach our sons about women.

Perhaps you should teach your sons to see women as people with viable thoughts, feelings, and opinions–none of which are tied to how skimpily they dress–instead of teaching them that scantily-clad women are without integrity, without intelligence, and ultimately worthless.

Michele at This Beautiful Struggle questions whose job it is anyway.

A friend wisely told me, "Are we our brother's keeper? Absolutely." That stuck. We are. In the struggle of living in a culture filled with overt sexuality and confusing messages, everyone pitches in. Moms who write blogs and bring awareness to the issue. Dads who treat moms and other women with love and respect. Neighbors who give attention to kids and blossoming adults for making wise choices - about the way they dress and the character they embody. Church families who pray over the kids and the parents as everyone navigates the rocky waters.

Lake Mom at Lake Schooling doesn't like our selfie culture in general.

If we want to eliminate the selfie, we have a lot of work to do on a societal level. As a parent, I try and do what I can in my home to help my girls see themselves and represent themselves more holistically. I share with them the difference between a self-portrait (something we have likely all posted) and a selfie. One of their rules for using social media will include the prohibition of seductive selfies.

BlogHer member theillumiletty wrote her own letter, pointing out that teaching our kids what to do with their emotions is of the utmost importance.

Maybe instead of just blocking the pictures you deem “provocative”, you need to have an open discourse with your sons about respecting women. This “boys will be boys” attitude is, quite frankly, crap. Just because you block the pictures doesn’t mean you are blinding them to provocative images. You can’t control what they see when you’re not around. Teaching them how to handle what they see and their emotions is key.

Melissa at Pigtail Pals and Ballcap Buddies shares a personal story from her teenage years and then a list of questions we need to be asking whether we agree with Mrs. Hall or not.

At seventeen I didn’t need women like you shaming me. I needed women like you mentoring me, caring about me, not throwing me away. I needed women to wink at me at my youthful indiscretions, and then show me how to be a grown up. The only difference between me and the girls you shame is that when I was seventeen, there was no Instagram or facebook. At seventeen, I didn’t flash the lobby because of low self-esteem or to tempt boys or men who linger and lust after high school girls, I flashed the lobby because it was my world and everyone else was just a guest in it.

As you can see, everyone took away something different from the letter in question, thus promoting a viral and continuous discussion on everything from slut-shaming to proper use of social media to respecting all people. As much as I want to be annoyed with the original letter and its anti-girl message, I kind of love the discussions we're having in our social places and yes, at my dinner table.

What are your thoughts on this letter?

 

Family/Moms & Events Section Editor Jenna Hatfield (@FireMom) blogs at Stop, Drop and Blog.

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