Friday, September 28, 2012

Frankly Friday...v5

I'm SO thankful it is Friday! 
I can not even put it into!
What is Frankly Friday? 
Let's define Frankly shall we...
frankly |ˈfra ng klē|adverbin an open, honest, and direct manner
. . .
I want this to be a way for all of us to be open, raw, and transparent with not only each other...but with ourselves. I think we put a lot of stock into the "fear" of what others may think of us...into the "fear" of really putting what's on your heart out there in case someone decides to tear you down.
I'm over the fear & you should be too.
So let's write...whether it's about a situation you're struggling through, a victory you've made, a memory that you can't let go of...anything as long as it's honest.
. . .
So...i know this series is called FRANKly friday, but i dont know if i've been really brash yet. 
Here is a little insight into all that is Amy...i'm honest AND i don't really sugar coat anything. 
That isn't to say that i go around smacking people over their heads with truth bombs that hurt; it just means that i tell it like it is...regardless of whether it's PC or not. {and for the record, i strongly dislike PC}. 
SO with that being said, if you're not the kind of person who bodes will with having someone walk (maybe heavily) on your toes then skip this post and return monday for fun! :)
. . .
Today i want to discuss Modesty because i feel that our society {and especially our women} are lacking straight up running from it. I've had this talk with countless teenage girls and it's incredible to me how many of them have never had an older female sit them down and not only explain what modesty is and the value of it, but how it can conjure up incredible self-esteem. 
Disclaimer: This thought process is geared towards my Sisters in Christ, those who worship at the feet of Jesus, who are called to a higher standard. If you choose to not believe in Him, then the weight of this message is not geared directly towards you--even though you might benefit from hearing thoughts of another woman walking through life with you. ]
I saw this on Pinterest the other day and it floored me, because i think it all of the time:
Ouch right? 
That is never easy to hear. 
. . .
I guess i should explain where this post is coming from, i suppose what triggered this thought process this week. I see these young ladies (my age or a little older), and teenage girls (or in other cases >12) walking around in shorts that are hugging the butt curve and leaving nothing to the imagination. I see beautiful {and probably incredible} women with dresses that will show the world their goodies if they even attempt to sneeze. I find myself seeing girls throwing themselves at any man that pays them the slightest attention. 
It all shatters my heart.
I was once told:
If it is not on the menu, cover it up.
Let me put it this way {this is how i explain it to my female students}, if you are showing it then you are giving any male (or woman) the permission to touch it. I sometimes get a "nu-uh, i'm not wearing a sign that says 'hey you can touch here'" to which i lovingly respond: you don't have to, they are touching you with their eyes. Now to some women this might be the exact response they are wanting to get, look at me, how sexy am I, oo yes i have your attention...i guess my question to you ladies is:
Why do you want attention soley based off of how your body is looking? 
What are you trying to prove void are you attempting to fill within your life?
You might not think you are, but really stop and think about it.
Why do you crave sexual attention, and don't dish out that "that's how i'm wired" garbage because it's not fully truth. Something is missing, something is...hurting your heart and your'e grasping for any kind of control you can. Been there--done that--bought the crap t-shirt.
What is the value of being modest?
I believe there are plenty of good reasons to dress modestly but i'll focus on one reason right now:
Respect not only for the incredible woman you are within, but respect for the men that you surround yourself with.

I guess i should share a personal story of the first time i realized the responsibility i had as a woman:
When i was in youth group (around probably 9-10th grade) i didn't really care what i wore {and trust me that is evident from the hideous, atrocious, and down right embarrassing photos i have}. I had grown into a body (basically overnight) that was curvy and foreign and bless my mothers heart she had nothing up top to worry about so helping me find "stylish" and NOT sultry clothing was hard; not to mention the fact that i was a teenager and sometimes changed clothes when i left the house because i wanted to attract more attention. One night at church i had on a lower cut top and one of my younger guy friends pulled me aside and said, "you know how much i love you and how much i value our friendship right?" i was like crap, what happened?! He continued, "when you wear tops like that it really causes me to struggle with lust and it sucks..." He was really struggling through the conversation and i could tell how embarrassed he was to be talking to me about it.
I was floored. This conversation opened my eyes and from that point on i knew that i needed to dress more modestly.
. . .
What did i learn from this?
Guys are visual creatures; & i hold a lot of responsibility within my closet.
Yes, i can choose to wear whatever i want "who cares what other people think", but the truth is: you should care. You should care how you are presenting yourself (not just outwardly but inwardly), and you should care how it affects other people. I am not married, but i have been in relationships before and when a girl walks by with SUPER revealing clothing and i know that the guy i am with has to do his very best to not let his eyes frustrates me. It frustrates me because he shouldn't have to be put in that position, and that beautiful woman shouldn't have to feel like in order to be sexy she shows skin.
. . .
Now i'm not saying we should all walk around in turtle necks and jeans for the rest of our lives...that's just ridiculous. What i am saying is, be more responsible, more mindful of the clothes you choose to wear. There are PLENTY of cute pants, skirts, tops, etc that are incredibly fashionable and yet still cover all of your goods. If you want to be sultry sexy...then hey go for it: with your husband.
. . .
Some ladies won't give a second thought to anything i just wrote; and that is perfectly you're choice. Some ladies might be offended or angry with what i've written; i know how you feel, it's a hard truth to swallow. Some ladies will be shaking their heads in agreement mumbling finally someone said it. However i hope all of you know that this is coming from a place of experience and a place of love.
I go around saying "Modest is Hottest" to my girls, and i get a lot of eye rolls...but i can say this for sure:
It's what guys (at least the ones worth any time) really want.
I've done surveys, questioners, random polls on facebook and 90% of what i have received back sounds all to similar: i love a girl with mystery, cover it up, most girls leave nothing to the imagination, it causes me to lust, please your worth is not found in that.
. . .
So ladies, whom i love, cover it up.
Be respectful and responsible of the power you hold with your body.
Wear something that expresses who you are, not what you want to attract.
Remember, that men are always looking (no matter their age), and some might be struggling to not fall int a lust fantasy depending on the outfit you're wearing.
& know this: I love you all, regardless of what you wear.  
{Edit: This is not my only stance on modesty (the guys part), this is just the one that i felt more pulled to while writing. I believe that modesty is beautiful in so many different areas, and (like i mentioned earlier) completely boosts a womans self image. Modesty is more than just 'protecting males eyes', absolutely; it's about having respect for yourself, your body, and dressing in a way that while fashionable is also incredibly breath-taking. I just don't want anyone reading this to feel that the only reason i view "modest is hotest" is for the males aspect--it is also equally as important on the female side! <3
I guess what i've attempted to say is that as Christian women we should do our best not to be a stumbling block. }
. . .
Feel free to check out past Frankly Fridays:
v1 | v2 | v3 | v4
. . .
Here is the link-up


Laura said...

In my head I am totally standing up and clapping about this!! Woo hoo! I talk about modesty all the time and rarely do other women really get it. You get it!

Hooray for modesty! And holy hooray for the guy who had enough guts to actually let you know that how you were dressing made things difficult for him! Amazing! Wow!

Katie said...

I agree with modesty because I think it's classy, but I don't necessarily agree that is our responsibility to guard men's hearts/eyes. That's their responsibility and I think there is too much pressure on women in the church to deal with men's problems with lust. I also think there is a confusion with what lust actually is. Looking at a women and thinking she is attractive or sexy is not lust, and I think the church makes it that A LOT.

That said, I agree with a lot of your points and I agree with modesty completely! Just not necessarily for the reason of protecting men, but more of just being classy and honoring your body by dressing it in clothes that fit and look good. Because really I don't think anyone looks good with their boobs hanging out! Well and protecting yourself from total creepers.

I think modesty is complicated, I guess that's my point! haha

Jamie said...

Oh wow. Interesting and thought provoking post.

Victoria said...

Amy, LOVE all of your words here! I am also very passionate about modesty. I find that it's not really even about men, women, bodies, or eyes. The clothes women wear SHOW what's going on deep inside of them. Clothes are simply a manifestation of what and how they think and believe.

So, I am passionate about women coming to see WHO they are, where their IDENTITY, VALUE, and SECURITY are found. Covering up doesn't even change the heart issues that are happening inside. I long for both....because what makes me saddest is a classy lady throwing herself at a guy, even her husband hoping to get from him(or them) what she can only get from Christ.

Thanks for sharing!Love that pin and what a great guy friend you had to tell you that.

Abbey said...

I definitely don't think this will go past girls who aren't Christians. There's a lot of really valid stuff in here across all religions.

The part that hit home with me (of course) is when you talk about respecting the relationship you're in. I don't think I was ever a super immodest dresser anyway. My normal clothes, to work or on the weekend, are pretty modest. But when I was single and I used to get dressed up to go out I did show a little more skin. Not in society's standards (my sister always laughed at dresses I considered to be short and tops I felt like were low cut) by according to my standards. Sometimes it was just an adrenaline rush -- getting out of my comfort zone. But also knowing I was maybe going to attract more guys that way.

ANYWAY. since dating Pat, I don't really have any desire to do that. When I dress up, it's either because I'm trying to match the level of dressiness of my companions and not look bad in pictures or because I want to look nice for Pat :)

I also feel you on the heavy on top means it's harder to find clothes part. I'm not as big in the boobage as I used to be, but it can get super frustrating to find cute tops (and swimsuits!) that don't make me feel like I'm fallin out all over the place. And it's not fair that smaller girls can wear things and look cute and we wear the same thing and look immodest because our chests are bigger. It definitely makes things trickier!

Lora Ashley said...

I love this post. Mom and I had this conversation the other day actually.
Men should have their guards up, but as women of God we have the responsibility to not make them stumble and I believe that means dressing modestly so their minds don't go there.
Good post :-)

Ech and Will said...

It took me a long long long time to figure out what you're saying. When I was single I confused attention with affection. Unfortunately a few bad choices in men gave me a low self esteem and I thought I needed that kind of attraction from males. I tried on an old "dress" and I was appalled that I actually wore it in public without pants. I feel so sad for girls who dress the way I used to. I hope other women learn earlier than I did.

Genna said...

Oh man I wish I would have known you when I was in high school. I so could have used this post then! In agree with everything 110% and appreciate your honesty and heart. Sharing that story can't have been easy, so props to you for being willing!

Melissa said...

Truth, girl!! Preach it!

Sarah Grace said...

i love everything about this post. you're honesty is so refreshing and i love your boldness!

you should read this post:
it's part of a modesty series another blogger i follow did. she has few posts on modesty and i think they are very honest and are so full of truth.

keep it up lady! you're so encouraging!