Before you react too quickly when your daughter starts dressing trashy, it's a good idea to get inside her head prior to jumping inside her closet. Take time to pay attention to your daughter. Really study her moods, her friends, her struggles at school, changes that are going on inside her as well as outside. Try to analyze what's going on in her life that might suddenly make her want to wear trashy clothes.
There are lots of reasons she might have chosen a change in her attire and her look. These reasons will prompt totally different interventions and conversations from you.
1. She might be rebelling. If she perceives that you want her to be a perfect child, she might be showing you that she has a mind of her own and you cannot control who she is and what she does. A demand for perfection isn't a good thing; kids know they can't meet the expectations and standards you've set for them. It's too much pressure to try to be perfect, so they turn in the other direction and rebel. And if she senses that you're trying too hard to be the perfect parent, she might just rebel against that as well.
2. She might be crying out for help. Girls today are subjected to a great deal of stress, and peer pressure can cause such distress that girls become unhappy and depressed. They may not know how to talk about their troubles or they don't know who to talk with, so they just cry out with their dress: "Will someone please notice me and help me?"
3. She might be identifying with a group of friends. If your daughter wants to hang out with a certain clique who dresses a certain way, she will want to dress the same way so that she fits in. Remember that girls can be chameleons. They will do almost anything to get that feeling of belonging.
4. She might be emulating you — her mom. This may be the time to notice how you dress, primp, and behave. If you constantly dress provocatively or in a manner that attracts men, she may be imitating you. If you are dressed to the nines to pick her up at school, go grocery shopping, or attend her sports events, she may have gotten the message that she needs to do the same thing. There's a subtle but important difference between being dressed appropriately and being just a little too dressed for ordinary occasions, and your daughter will notice and respond to how you do it.
5. She might be ignorant of what's appropriate. Some girls have been a tomboy much of their childhood or they've had other things on their minds. Suddenly, when the ‘tween or teen years hit, they know they need to dress better, but they just haven't been paying attention and don't know how.
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