This mom placed greater value regarding the worldly nature of her daughter fitting in versus her daughter’s perceived safety. Much of the time, we are in denial of the potential of crimes occurring against our children, especially when we live in small towns where crimes seem less prevalent. This was exactly the environment in which this family lived. This mother loved her girls very much and it was clearly obvious that she was an excellent, kind, caring, nurturing role model. However, her ideas regarding protection were much different than her husband’s. Her ideas quite possibly centered on not leaving her children home alone or not letting them wander off in stores. Dad’s ideas, on the other hand, were more focused around the scheming of child sexual perpetrators. Mom believed her ideals regarding safety were warranted, while her husband’s were too strict and extreme.
We cannot dismiss the true component of the disagreement in this home. The issue was not about clothing. It was more clearly about power and control and who would win the position of primary decision maker. Because dad was often absent from the home, mom naturally had to exercise more authority in making daily decisions. She had an easy opportunity with little accountability to disregard those rules that seemed too stifling for her girls. In dad’s mind, there would be a time and place for his little girl to one day dress as a woman, however kindergarten was not the time, nor the place. In mom's eyes, there was nothing wrong with her girls looking cute and fashionable.