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Monday, September 24, 2012

Homecoming Dress (a Mother's Nightmare)

I love 15. I truly do. And I trust her to make good choices as she grows. She's a great kid, she's smart, she's funny as hell, she's drop dead gorgeous and to paraphrase her favorite boy band, One Delusion (or something like that) she doesn't know she's beautiful. (here's where I wait for her to read and correct me)

Anyway, that being said, she went shopping on Friday night with two girlfriends for dresses for Homecoming which is next Saturday. I had plans with the moms in my 'hood, and her dad was working, so one of the girls'  moms took them out to the mall. 15 had said that this mom would be fine with paying for a dress for 15 if I wanted her to, and I could just pay her back. While it was a really nice and very generous offer, I politely declined, telling 15 that if she did find a dress, put it aside or ask them to hold it and I would take her back up Saturday and buy it. OR she could take her own birthday money and use it to buy a dress. She took her money and off they went.

Fast forward to about 8:00 that night. I was well into a bottle of wine, having fun with the moms, playing Pokeno and enjoying a moms night out. 15 sent me a picture text, but nothing came through. I texted her back and she said "Did you see it?" Seeing nothing but a big white screen on my phone I texted back that I didn't see it. So she called me and told me that she had tried on this 'really pretty cream colored dress and it was only $34 and she could buy it herself and it was really pretty and can I get it?' After a little more discussion, and knowing that it would save me the trouble of driving up the next day to buy it, I agreed. She of course gave me the standard: "Thank you! I love you mommy!" schpeal and hung up. Several minutes later, the picture came through. I nearly died.

While I do have a foul mouth at times, I'm not a big proponent of posting pictures of scantily clad women on my blog. And ESPECIALLY not pictures of those to whom I've given birth. So you can imagine my shock and awe when I saw that this dress looked like, in my husband's words: a scrunchy. It WAS in fact cream colored, flesh colored to be more precise. Strapless. Form fitting (read: TIGHT) and about 6 inches too short. This was the conversation, verbatim that I had with 15 after the picture came through and I had sufficiently lost my mind:

Me: Did you already buy it?

4 seconds go by without a reply

Me: DID YOU ALREADY BUY IT???????


15: Yes I did

Me: Save the receipt, don't dare take the tags off!!!

I got home from moms night out and when I went into 15's room she was already asleep. I looked at the dress hanging innocently in her closet and threw up. This thing looked like an ace bandage, only smaller. If I let her wear this dress this year, next year's dress would very likely be down to bandaids on her nips and possibly a fig leaf (optional, I'm sure) Do you know WHY this dress was only $34 at Macy's??? Because even the hookers knew it was too small and too tight.

Don't go getting all up in my grill about my comparison of my 15 year old to a hooker, because that's not what I'm saying at all. I'm saying her choice of homecoming dresses just needed some guidance. When I asked if her friend's mom had seen the dress, she replied that no, the mom had not. Saturday 15 had an away cross country met and then we had a houseful of kids Saturday evening, so I never actually got to talk with her about her clothing choices. However, Sunday morning, we discussed it. Or more accurately, I asked her to put the dress on so that I could see it in person. Maybe the picture didn't do it justice. Maybe it looked better on her in person. Maybe my dogs would develop the ability to calculate nuclear physics too.

When she came downstairs with this dress on, my jaw hit the floor. Yes, she's drop dead gorgeous. Yes, she has a great figure. But NO way in HELL was she wearing this rubber band to Homecoming. So I explained in my most soothing, caring, loving mom voice that she is a beautiful girl but that dress sends the wrong message. I know she's a decent kid, I know she's got morals and isn't loose or trampy, but that dress says otherwise. Yes, all of her friends know her and know she's not a tramp but what about those who DON'T know her? Will they be quick to judge? And while I do teach my kids that it doesn't matter what others think of you, as long as you know in your heart that you're a good person, I had to be a hypocrite this one time and rule a big HELL NO to this particular item of clothing. So sue me.

So Sunday afternoon, 15, her bestie M, hubby and I headed back up to Macy's to return the scrunchy. We then went to every single store in the mall in search of a more appropriate dress for homecoming. And we came up completely empty handed. Deb, Charlotte Russe, Penney's, you name it we searched it and found nothing that 15 liked. Leaving the mall, I was sweating, my heart was pounding, and I'm thinking, great now she's going to have to wear last year's dress again and she'll be in therapy for years and write a tell-all book about what a rotten and judgemental mother I am. But there was one option, and while I wasn't IN LOVE with it, it WAS an option.

David's Bridal. There was one right across from the mall and I thought, other than an assload of cash, what have we got to lose by taking a look. Our lovely bridal shopping consultant, Fey, picked a bunch of pretty dresses for 15 to try on. And BAM! After an hour and 10 minutes and 42 dresses, we had a winner. It is a really gorgeous royal blue, somewhat form-fitting but not hookerish dress. The price was marked down from $99 to $59. Okay I can live with $59. Except that it was a scad too loose at the top and 15's girls would be making surprise appearances all night if we didn't get it altered. So Fey took us back to alterations where we met the lovely Michelle, who was sweet and kind and told us that the alterations would be $50, PLUS $15 because of the extra material that had to be cut off the top of the dress. Oh and PLUS $25 because it was a rush job (alterations usually allow for 2 weeks, we only had one week, so BAM, another $25). I must admit that the dress is beautiful, 15 is a knock out in it, and it covers more of her body than the damn paper towel that we returned to Macy's, so I said 'Okay, let's do it' which got the standard "Thank you mommy, I love you" from 15.

Last surprise. When we finally made it to the register to pay, Michelle rang up the alterations ($90) and when she scanned the price tag for the dress, it came up $29 NOT $59. BONUS! So the alterations were 3 times the price of the dress. But the dress, all told, came to $127, and to me, that's well worth the cost of having 15's girls and her hoo haa covered up. I'll put up a picture on the day of the dance.

24 comments:

  1. You totally made the right choice! Go Mom ;)

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  2. Oh my goodness. My daughter is a freshman and we just went shopping for a Homecoming dress on Sunday. I think we crossed paths with the Ace Bandage dress, too. What is up with that?

    Major score on finding the other dress. And it seems like your daughter did not throw a fit about taking the other dress back. Kudos.

    Loved this post (and the poke at One Direction). :) Ellen

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    1. Thanks Ellen! It seems as if all the stores or at least all the dress makers want to see hoochies as far as the eye can see. My oldest's biggest issue is her height, she's extremely tall and so everything she tries on is so short on her, and then add to that the fact that EVERY DRESS is short to begin with and you have a tall beautiful girl basically wearing a belt.

      She didn't throw a fit, she was really, perfectly fine with it, which makes me a very lucky mom.

      Thanks!
      Teri

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  3. We were eating out at a local restaurant last fall during the local HS homecoming time. Several of the couples ate at the restaurant where we were, and hub wanted to cover our then-4-year-old's eyes because of the dresses (or the lack thereof) that a few of those girls were wearing. And yes, we were those judgmental people who don't know those girls (who might very well BE nice, non-hookerish girls!), but we assumed they were of "questionable morals" based solely on the blue-tinted bandaids they were wearing with their 6-inch heels.

    I am so glad I had a boy. Today's fashions for girls scare the crap out of me!

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    1. Me too Minday. And I've only got more of this to look forward to. Cherish that boy, he'll never have to worry about looking like a tramp.

      Teri

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  4. You should tell her that if she ever shows up with a dress like that again, instead of wearing one of her old dresses to the function, she'll be wearing one of YOUR old prom dresses! ;)

    ~~xo, Spammy

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    1. Now THAT would definitely end up with her writing a tell-all book about how I forced her to wear taffeta and crinoline. Years of therapy. Nightmares, cold sweats.

      I LOVE IT!!!

      Thanks Spammy,
      Teri

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  5. These are the days I am NOT looking forward too! Good job Mama on making 15 and yourself happy!

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    1. Good luck Alex! These are things I never thought I'd have to deal with. I was always short and dumpy and never would've even considered dressing in a short, tight dress so I have NO experience with having long, tall daughters. Everyday is a learning experience!!

      Thanks,
      Teri

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  6. Stone of the Keith varietySeptember 24, 2012 at 12:26 PM

    I love the way you dealt with this situation. Your choice of things to say to 15 and your compliments to her on her appearance and morals was so thoughtful. I wish that I had given those responses when faced with a similar situation. As a Mom, you ROCK!

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    1. CRACKING UP, Keith!!!! Oh my God I'm going to get in trouble just laughing at your name.

      But thank you for the kind words, you know our girls and know what kind of girls they are and I just wanted her to know that while on the inside, we know how great they are, on the outside, we know there are people who would jump immediately to the wrong conclusions based on looks alone.

      Don't sell yourself short, Keith. Your daughter's a pretty amazing kid herself and KNOW that can't ALL come from Brian.

      Very smooth post.
      Thanks,
      Teri

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  7. Yikes! I am not looking forward to those days...my girls already give me a hard time about what they wear now, at 7 and 4. I can't imagine.
    But I am glad you guys found another dress...not so "scrunchy-ish". haha. Can't wait to see it!

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  8. Seriously! I know many moms of school dance aged children who are always battling this issue. Why must so many children's clothing items be so skanky? We are looking for my 5 year olds Halloween costume and half of them are inappropriate! Hello! She's in kindergarten! She does not need to be a sexy witch, sexy pirate or sexy hooker. Why can't she just be a little girl in a cute costume?

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    1. This is something that's gotten progressively worse over the past few years. The clothes have gotten pricier and skimpier and it's so frustrating to go shopping with these girls. Everything is way too sexy.

      Teri

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  9. GOOD. FOR. YOU! She'll thank you for it one day when she's a mom and her kids aren't asking, "Mom, why can't I wear THIS if you wore THAT to homecoming!"

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    1. Thanks Katy! I actually never thought to look at it from that perspective, and I do hope she sees it that way when she's blessed with her own darling children who are too beautiful and nice to wear a scrunchy-dress to homecoming.

      Teri

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  10. You made the right choice Mama!

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    1. Thanks Jenna, I think so too. :)

      Teri

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  11. I am rolling on the floor about the comparison to an ace bandage!! I can so picture this dress because I teach middle school and every year at commencement, at least one girl wears a dress just as inappropriate as what you describe. SOmetimes they are strapless (forbidden). Sometimes they are of the ballgown nature. Sometimes all white just like a wedding dress. Zebra striped. Sequins. Mom's/grandma's/auntie's skirt from 1970. THis is for 45 minutes of COMMENCEMENT. Not even a dance!!

    I laugh when I think of what I wore to homecoming in 1991. Laura Ingalls Wilder, anyone? I was no fashionista but I think I was a tad extra out of style with the dress I wore. The girls were covered by material AND lace on top of it in a smocking type style and my hoo ha? Didn't even know I had one back then.

    Ace bandage. Ha ha. Still laughing.

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    1. LOL I'm hoping that in the days since '91 you've found your hoo ha. ;) Glad you enjoyed the blog. I definitely made the right choice because God forbid someone got injured and needed an ace bandage, my poor daughter would end up naked!

      Teri

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  12. Ha! my 14 year old was trying on dresses with her friend,and friends mom the dresses they were trying on the hookers would have left behind too. I told her to leave the lingerie department and go to the duggar section...

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  13. I am an Old Fart (57). I am, by virtue of my upbringing in Texas, a naturally conservative kind of guy.

    I am also the father of two beautiful little girls...7 and 11...who will undoubtedly grow into beautiful young women some day.

    They say that "luck favors a prepared mind", so I am well-prepared for the eventual "Daddy, I need a prom/homecoming dress" scenario.

    I recently obtained two burlap potato bags from our local Produce Guy.

    Prom/Homecoming Dress Problem solved - years in advance.

    To all potential suitors of my 2 Little Girls: I own a shotgun and know how to use it.

    Have a nice day.

    Fearless Leader, Shotgun Owner & Daddy

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  14. Hot Black Prom Dresses are on sale now! Come to www.promdressbycolor.com, you will be thrilled with the dress prices and the good quality. Select the good dresses for parties here. Not only the dresses are good enough, the service will be super good as well.

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