Sunday, July 15, 2012

Why I Choose to Dress Modestly

I grew up in a religion that encourages it's girls and women to dress modestly. My parents also believed this strongly and so I grew up always buying a one-piece and never a bikini, wearing skirts and and dresses that hit my knee and never showing my stomach or cleavage.

I always was fine with it.

Well, I got older. I moved away. I went to college. And now I am a career woman. I still choose to dress modestly. Not because my parents won't "let me out of the house looking like that," but because I want to. Why would I chose this?

Let me preface this by saying this is my choice. I am not saying that in any way anyone else's choice to dress differently is wrong or bad. I know many amazing, wonderful women that do not share my same views. That is fine. I am simply stating the reasons behind why I do this, as I know some people wonder.

Let's think about [a few of] the reasons I might choose not to. First of all, I might feel "prettier" wearing shorter skirts or showing a bit of cleavage. Guys like it, right? But why do they like it? It makes me "hot" and "sexy." Do I want a guy whose first impression of me is "sexy"... or "beautiful"? I choose beautiful. I can still be pretty and attractive to men by wearing a dress that goes to my knees and covers me up on top. I personally also have more respect for a man that is looking for a modestly dressed woman.

Competition. Not competition over boys, but girl competition. If you're a girl, you know what I'm talking about. I don't know why it exists, but it does. I have so many awesome girl friends, yet when I meet a new girl I feel some weird underlying competition. Not every time and not in every situation, but often it is there. [And it's strange because many times I end up being friends with the girl and forget about any sort of competition.] Sometimes the competition is because of jealousy. When I see a cute girl wearing short shorts and a tiny tank top, even in a classy way, I get a little jealous. She looks cute, right? Not slutty. But guess what I realized? I can look cute in my longer shorts and t-shirt too.

Those are my two main pulls of ever wanting to dress in a way that I deem as immodest, but there is one more: convenience. Holy cow, it is sometimes a nightmare to find modest clothes! Most especially in dresses and shorts. Thank goodness that maxi skirts are in style, but do I really want to be traipsing in a maxi all the time? No way. I want variety! I love sundresses just as much as the next girl. And when I go into Forever 21 I just about die. So many adorable dresses. Wouldn't it just be so much easier to buy one of those dresses that's a little too short, or a little too low, or even just spaghetti straps? Yes. Yes it would be. So how do I counter convenience? I counter it with the real reason behind why I choose to dress modestly.

I choose to dress modestly out of respect for myself and respect for God. Like I said above, I don't need to show more skin to get a guy to like me or to feel like I fit in with the girls. That is respecting myself. I also do it to show respect to my Heavenly Father. He made this body for me, and I need to treat it with the utmost care and respect. That doesn't mean that I should use it to get men, or use it to fit into the current "trends," but that I should treat it as what it is-a Heavenly gift. A gift designed for much more than being a sex-appeal, some kind of object, or even a model for the world's latest trends. Dressing modestly can be a challenge sometimes, but to show respect to myself and my God, it is a challenge I am willing to take on for the rest of my life.

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