As I was browsing through by Facebook news feed, I came across an article posted by several friends. I clicked on the article and it led me to the CNN story:
It is no secret that young girls have body issues and these body issues sometimes carry on into adulthood. This is a fact. It is a fact that I will concede is perpetuated by all media. It is also no secret that a young girl’s shape, as she is becoming an adolescent and teen, is at times awkward. It isn’t like girls blossom into womanhood by suddenly waking up with perfectly formed breasts overnight. They grow slowly, unevenly, and odd shaped as they develop. These are facts that many people do not admit to themselves or even explain to their own children. Last time I went to the pool, most of the tweens or younger teen girls, wore rash guards or oversized t-shirts while they swam. These girls also immediately threw on towels covering their tops half or walked with their arms covering their chests. Why do you think that is? Are they cold? NO, it was in a well heated, indoor aquatic center. They are self conscience. What is wrong with a company identifying and addressing this issue? What is wrong with a company seeking to give girls the ability to swim in public without embarrassment? Padding will allow young girls to let their guard down and just have fun, without wondering of someone is going to notice that their breasts are not the same size or are oddly shaped. The padding also conceals their nipples. I remember from when I was a tween, I was most embarrassed when I got out of the pool or was cold and they were standing out at attention. For all the moms out there who scream “boycott” my response to you is this; Do the bras you buy your developing tweens have padding in them? Do you allow your girls to get their hair highlighted? Do you allow your daughter to wear V-cut or baby T’s? All of these products are designed with the same principles’ as the padded bikini top. Padding does not equal sex any more than shaving your legs does. It is all about confidence and feeling good about the skin you’re in. It’s about being able to walk around with your head held high. This 100% removable padding offers an option, to those who want it. If you do not like this product, then exercise your options by removing the padding or walking away and not buying it for your daughter. But do not ignore that this product has a place that goes beyond SEX. In fact I say that this product has nothing at all with the act of having sex or wanting to have sex. it is the adults in the discussion that open up this point. Padded swimsuit tops offer developing girls the first real opportunity to work with what they have and feel good about themselves, to be free to have fun and NOT think about their body. I call out to all the moms out there to not forget what it was like to be a tween; for whether moms or dads buy this product or not most tweens (boys and girls) have body issues.
The biggest argument against Abercrombie’s creation of padded bikini tops is that men will see these little girls as sexual objects. Well, if a man (and by man I mean late teen to 18+) sees an 8-14 yr. old girl in a bikini of ANY type and gets turned on…he has bigger issues, that Abercrombie did not create. These men are predators or lack a decent moral compass. These types of men would be looking at these girls inappropriately whether young girls wore a bikini with padding or not. Less than a ¼ inch of padding does not a woman make! If a girl is 12, she will continue to look well under the age of consent, whether she wore the Abercrombie bikini top or not.