Morning routines are hard enough without having to deal with the drama of fighting over what the kids wear to school. I gave up long ago with trying to power struggle over trying to reason with a kid over a more appropriate shirt or pair of pants. So what do I do now? They either wear appropriate attire or they go nowhere, not even school.
Over the years the boys would “conveniently” lose belts, socks and shoe strings, with the intention of “If I ain’t got it, I can’t wear it”. They soon learned that My wife had ultimate control over their allowance account and they got real upset over buying the exact same belt, three times a month.
Anyone that knows me will tell you I’m all about personal expression and being yourself. My wardrobe consists of leather, flannel, a suit and one red crushed velvet shirt (everyone should own at least one). I have tattoos and a shaved head, I’m fairly certain a modeling contract is not in my future unless there’s a trailer park out there looking to put out a calendar. But this is who I am and unfortunately for my wife, this is who she married. Having said that, there is also a time and place for my personal wardrobe expression.
When conducting a meeting, doing tours of the cottage and especially intake meetings, I dress business casual. Every time I am in a position to represent my facility, I will dress for the occasion. Just as when I am wearing my biker colors I represent my club. Likewise every time a kid steps out of your house and onto the school bus they are representing you and your facility. If you don’t take the time to teach them the appropriate boundaries when it comes to proper attire, you will be embarrassed. Nothing says “Skank” like a G-String poking out the back of a pair of jeans worn by your fourteen year old little girl. Let your boys go to school busting a sag with a T-shirt that’s four times larger than them and they will hang with the gangsta wannabe’s. Don’t believe me? Think back to your own high school career. What did the stoners look and act like? What about the red necks and all the other cliques? That’s my point, at this stage kids will act according to what clique they style themselves after.
There is little you can do if a kid chooses that lifestyle, but you still have control over the wardrobe, even if the kid is a state placement. I have threatened on more than one occasion to replace a kids wardrobe with Amish apparel.
I understand it is a battle, but teaching a child that you dress for the occasion will go a long way in helping them to succeed in social settings, long after they have left your care. -Launch