FYI (if you’re a teenage girl)

Dear girls,

I have some information that might interest you. Last night, as we sometimes do, our family sat around the dining-room table and looked through the summer’s social media photos.

 We have teenage sons, and so naturally there are quite a few pictures of you lovely ladies to wade through. Wow – you sure took a bunch of selfies in your skimpy pj’s this summer!  Your bedrooms are so cute! Our eight-year-old daughter brought this to our attention, because with three older brothers who have rooms that smell like stinky cheese, she notices girly details like that.

I think the boys notice other things. For one, it appears that you are not wearing a bra.

I get it – you’re in your room, so you’re heading to bed, right? But then I can’t help but notice the red carpet pose, the extra-arched back, and the sultry pout. What’s up? None of these positions is one I naturally assume before sleep, this I know.

So, here’s the bit that I think is important for you to realize. If you are friends with a Hall boy on Facebook or Instagram or Twitter, then you are friends with the whole Hall family.

Please know that we genuinely like staying connected with you this way. We enjoy seeing things through your unique and colorful lens. You are insightful, interesting, and often very, very funny – which is what makes your latest self-portrait so extremely unfortunate.

That post doesn’t reflect who you are at all! We think you are lovely, and smart. But, we had to cringe and wonder what you were trying to do? Who are you trying to reach? What are you trying to say?

And now – big bummer – we have to block your posts. Because, the reason we have these (sometimes awkward) family conversations around the table is that we care about our sons, just as we know your parents care about you.

I know your family would not be thrilled at the thought of my teenage boys seeing you only in your towel. Did you know that once a male sees you in a state of undress, he can’t quickly un-see it?  You don’t want the world to see you primarily in this sexual way, do you?

Neither do we: we’re all more than that.

 And so, in our house, there are no second chances with pics like that, ladies. We have a zero tolerance policy. I know, so lame. But, if you want to stay friendly with our sons online, you’ll have to keep your clothes on, and your posts decent. If you post a sexy selfie (we all know the kind), or an inappropriate YouTube video – even once – it’s curtains.

I know that sounds so old-school, but we are hoping to raise men with a strong moral compass, and men of integrity don’t linger over pictures of scantily clad high-school girls.

Every day I pray for the women my boys will love. I hope they will be drawn to real beauties, the kind of women who will leave them better people in the end. I also pray that my sons will be worthy of this kind of woman, that they will be patient, and act honorably, while they wait for her.

Girls, it’s not too late. If you think you’ve made an on-line mistake (we all do), run to your accounts and take down the closed-door bedroom selfies that makes it too easy for friends to see you in only one dimension.

Will you trust me? There are boys out there waiting and hoping for women of character. Some young men are fighting the daily uphill battle to keep their minds clear, and their thoughts praiseworthy – just like you.

You are growing into a real beauty, inside and out.

Act like her, speak like her, post like her.

Mrs. Hall

 *Comment Policy: If your comment is rude, or a rant, it will be deleted.  If it is critical, please keep it constructive so that I might learn from you.  If you are obnoxious, threatening, or hateful, I am sorry.

** Comment Update: Thanks for your comments. Due to the large volume of responses to this post, I can no longer moderate, and so this thread is no longer open for comments.

***Final Comment (finally):  You can read my response to this post here.

1,218 thoughts on “FYI (if you’re a teenage girl)

  1. Amen! Thank you Kim! I’m forwarding this to some of our high school friends in other towns too! Well said. :)

  2. I loved this post…and all of your posts. Makes me so glad FB wasn’t around at that age when my poor decisions might be forever left in cyber space!:)

  3. Great post! I shared it and saved it to share with my kids for when they are older. Thank you! :)

    If I may ask a question that a friend brought up because her young (8yo) daughter looked over her shoulder as she was reading this and commented on how muscular and good-looking your boys are (and they are!): where do we draw the line for pictures of boys? I know these aren’t in “sexy” poses or anything, and women don’t usually have the struggle with mental pictures that men often have, but technically they *are* fairly scantily-clad, and doing things to show strength which is what most women find alluring. Not trying to be critical, like I said, LOVE the article! Just wondering your take on the girls vs boys photo thing. Would girls in swimsuits be okay if they weren’t posing sexily? Bikinis or no?

  4. I second the poster who thought that you should reconsider these photos of your boys. I agree with everything you said about the girls’ poses but these are also not something I’d like to see my girls linger over. Ironic to find them in such a post. It goes both ways!

  5. I agree!! I have taught this lesson to my daughter many times, so tough when so many teenage girls aren’t modest.
    I do agree with the others that find it ironic that you chose pics of your boys shirtless. I wouldn’t allow my daughter to have friends who post shirtless. Just a thought, it does go both ways with the rules at our house.

  6. I agree!! I have taught this to my daughter many times, so tough when so many teenage girls aren’t modest. I also agree with the others who find ironic that you posted pics of your boys shirtless. I wouldn’t allow my daughter to be friends with boys who pose shirtless. It goes both ways with the rules at our house.

  7. I appreciate the thoughts in this post (and do agree!) but I find it a bit funny & thought-provoking that you decided to illustrate this post with pictures of your boys (?) in their swim suits. They are good-looking young guys and of course that is perfectly normal and acceptable for them to be in their swim trunks, but couldn’t a young teenage girl looking at that with friends be led to talk about them looking “hot” or whatever if they were popping up in their instagram account? (My oldest is an almost 10 year old girl who has no interest in boys, so not too sure yet how teen girls think!) I really want to know if this could be an issue for some girls (or guys) or not really.

  8. I thought the same things as others. Great message for girls! But, I can’t show this to my girls…I can only read it to them tonight because you have your handsome sons half dressed???

  9. This is brilliant. I will read it to our two teenage girls tonight. These girls have no idea what they are doing. They are simply trying to find their way. Keep writing.

  10. SO interesting to read these comments. I am a mom to five grown married daughters so I really appreciated your thoughts. I was however so surprised that you choose beach photos of your guys to post. I instantly had a check in my spirit. At first I thought, well maybe she is going to make a point that these kind of photos of her boys would not be allowed to be posted either. Otherwise, loved all that you had to share.

  11. as much as i enjoyed this post & the message is “right on” – i agree w/those who mentioned the pictures of your boys & husband. would it not have been just as appropriate to post picts of them in t-shirt & shorts?

  12. I thought you might appreciate this perspective. I pray the girls will too if you decide to share it with them.

    Love Mom

    Sent from my Verizon Wireless Device

  13. I can’t tell you how much I love this. One problem is that parents just don’t patrol what’s on line. Another is that they think all the sexy pictures are cute. You didn’t mention all the sexy beach pictures but I guess that goes without saying. I hope your boys do go for the girls with high morals cause it’s a lonely world for those girls in middle school.

  14. Hello Pot, meet Kettle. It’s not okay for girls to post pics of themselves in a vaguely-sexual pose.. but lets totally put pics of our teenage boys/husbands in wet swimsuits and muscle poses up for the world to see. Seems logical to me.

  15. Thanks Mrs. Hall you hit the nail on the head…beautiful, wonderful and enlightening post. I may need to send this to the girls that post to my son when you said wow I know where that came from thanks again

  16. I see you have had some bashing here for the pics of your sons in swim trunks. I think we need to consider the different circumstances. They are playing at the beach. The poses are not provocative (arched back, pouty lips……we have all seen those teen girls and the pose I am refering to). I have both sons and a daughter and I hope to teach each to be modest. To me that is not just what you wear but how you wear it. If the boys were posed in speedos on their beds with a come hither pouty bad boy look – then there would be something to throw rocks over. Good message for the male and female.

  17. This is such a respectful, heartfelt plea to young ladies today. As a youth worker, I believe that this is vital for young ladies to understand. I will be reading this to my youth group tonight.

  18. Mrs. Hall
    Well said. We are right in the thick of it with you in raising three teens. Thank you for your kind yet bold approach. May I be so bold as to encourage you to consider the other side of modesty. We link arms with you in your approach and your standard. But we also hold our boys to the same thing. Our teen boys have great tans from the 3 weeks we spent at the beach and they do all they can to pump up their teen aged six-pack but they must guard their hearts and not share posts that may cause they teen aged female followers to linger too long on their photos. For us there is no double standard. We don’t post photos of pictures of our daughter or our sons that may be a temptation. No bare-chested selfies or group shots. You want it posted…put on a shirt. Easy.

    Thanks again for your great post. Looking forward to see how you use the responses you get to think even harder about what it might mean to be men of integrity on both sides of the photo.

    Grace to you,
    Eliza

  19. An important message to everybody today. Thanks for your courage in writing this. A subject to be discussed at home and in church.

  20. The words of your post are a very good word. However, as the father of girls, I would probably block them from being friends with you over this blog that has several pictures of scantily clad boys.

  21. When in the world will we stop telling women to be ashamed of their bodies!? How about you teach your sons to respect women? Seems like a much easier solution. “Son, don’t be a creep”. Was that so hard? Why then would so many people rather jump through hoop after hoop in their attempt to control every possible piece of visual information that could reach their children?

    Stop attacking everyone’s daughters, and start shaping your sons into men who view and treat women as equals.

    I’m just worried that the primary message you are sending your sons is that it is the responsibility of every women they encounter to make sure they aren’t exposed to something sexually stimulating. This message damages men and it is entirely unfair for all women. The primary message should be “son, it is your responsibility to control yourself. No one else is responsible for how you think, act, or fantasize. Don’t blame women for your desires. It is not the job of all women to look and act just how you need them to for you to not be attracted to them. It is your job to treat women as people. It is your job to understand your sexuality. It is your job to conduct yourself with integrity.”

    Do you not trust your sons? Do you really view your sons in such a negative light that you had to compose this elaborate and often times accusatory, insulting, or belittling essay directed to every girl they have or may encounter rather than trust them with the responsibility?

    I view this essay as very damaging. You have taught your sons to blame others for their own behaviors and thoughts, and you have added to the myriad of voices already placing shame and blame on young women.

    Also, you are actively combing through the social media pages of teenage girls? You don’t see how this is a bit odd?

  22. In todays society, a shirtless man, (or young man) is not necesarilly a sexually provocative sight. Notice the boys pants are either knee length or almost knee length. A shirtless female is always a sexually attractive sight. So, if you find the boys sexually attractive or their poses inapproriate, then by all means unfreind or block them. Hypocrisy would say you have no right to block them. However, this family is laying a clear foundation as to what is acceptable to their family, not what is acceptable to anyone else’s family, especially the naysayers on the comment list.

  23. I must agree with several of the other commentators: why is it okay to talk about the woes of scantily clad young women when you’re revealing your sons to be half-naked in all but one picture? I also have great issue with the stereotype that boys can’t just “unsee” something… but girls can?
    I can’t unsee your very attractive, athletically built sons. I am married, though childless at the moment. But I must say that when teaching my sons and daughters about modesty (which, as a side note, I believe is about bearing your soul appropriately, through your clothing, not covering up your body) I will be unable to reference this article. It sends a message that was sent to me, and sent to my friends and my husband as we were all growing up that now we desperately want to change: that there are different standards between boys and girls for sexuality, modesty, and well basically anything. If I apply a rule to my daughters, I apply it to my sons. Therefore, your sons’ posts (assuming they have similar pictures on facebook) would be blocked from my daughters’ newsfeed.
    While science may show that pubescent boys and girls respond to imaging differently, is that really biological or is it sociological? From day 1, girls are taught that boys only want sex and we ladies need to get the guy to love us first and boys are taught that it’s okay to treat a woman as an object because she’s beautiful but then blame her for his lust because he’s just driven by imaging. It’s degrading to both of the gendered humans. I take great offense that, because I am female, I will not struggle with just wanting sex. It puts God’s creation in too tight of a box. There is no freedom to find healing from the sinful nature. Instead, it says that there is something wrong with me because I am not a “normal” girl who prefers roses to intercourse. A man who chooses to wait until his wedding day to have sex is considered a “wimp” and comments about his sexuality are made. Yet, a woman who does NOT choose to wait until her wedding day is a used-up slut. Where do these stereotypes come from? I believe they originate in the sociological training of our young ones that girls are this way and boys are this way.
    I appreciate what you’re trying to do, Mrs. Hall. I really do. I think you made some excellent remarks about modesty. I just would ask you to apply the same rules to your sons, as well.

  24. Oh my.. I have to say that I disagree that you can relate the pictures of the boys to what the poster is talking about in her post. The pictures of the boys could be placed on the wall in your home, for other family members to see, and guests.. no embarrasement, however, the kind of pictures that she is talking about are not WALL-WORTHY in the house nor should they be on the facebook “Wall”..

  25. Hello, I just want to say that I was blown away by your post. Oftentimes while praying over my girls, I also pray for their husbands to be. I’m left wondering if there will be any pure hearted young men available when my girls are ready to take their next step in life. It does my mother’s heart good to know that such young men do exist!

    I will keep you and your family in prayer as you endeavor to counteract our very loose and liberal culture. I can only hope that my daughters will be fortunate enough to meet young men who have parents like you. This was so encouraging! Thank you!

    From the heart of a Homeschool Mom

  26. Great post and a great reminder for us girls. Here is one for you, though. I am with some of the other commenters on this post who didn’t like the photos of your boys without shirts on. What is up with that? I skipped a bunch of your article as I didn’t want to be looking at those photos. My brothers never go without shirts, even when swimming with just our family. It isn’t legalism, it is just modesty.

  27. LOVED the words written… however, I agree with others that the pics are inappropriate coupled with the message. Girls won’t be able to “unsee” these pics either.

  28. I really like what you have to say…but if you are encouraging you ladies to post decent photos, then why did you post pictures of your boys without shirts in muscle poses…Girls can just as easily be tempted with these photos while they overlook your amazing and honest insight.

  29. Here’s an idea instead of bashing this mom for posting pics of her boys, copy and paste the blog, remove the pictures and email it to your daughters. The message is one I agree with. Making the necessary modifications so that the message is best received by my girl without distraction. Thanks Mrs. Hall!

  30. I wanted to love the article too, but the “Boom, Boom, Firepower” poses reminded me of the infamous “shirt held up showing my 6-pack” provocative boys’ selfie compiled all over the internet. It’s a shame that I only walked away with the thoughts of hypocrisy with such a well written article. I would remove those pics, explain to my sons how that might seem like a double standard, and repost the article. Because, fortunately in my book, there are second chances =)

  31. As a father of a 13 year old daughter, I applaud this article. NO, a standing ovation! It is a great article for all girls to read. From a father’s point of view, I do not understand why it is okay for boys, not men I would want my daughter to date, to post photos of them with their swimsuits or shorts so low on their waist that it leave little to the imagination of a young lady, nor do the “I got abs” photos that are posted, and sometimes sent to my daughter, before she go her Ipod and phone taken way until she matures enough to know what is and is not acceptable to get from boys. If my daughter were to read this article she would only get lost in the photos that accompanied the article. Again, I agree that girls need to have more respect for themselves than to post such photos, but I would hope a young man would do the same when posted photos of himself. Who are we kidding here! It is not a gender issue, it is a morality issue. Do not just blame the girls whom your family befriends; set the standard high for all genders.

  32. So one question then why are your boys shirtless in the pic you have on this page and also posing as to show off their muscles. Seems a bit do as I say not as I do if you ask me!

  33. Um…OK?

    Since I usually have the audience of about 19 people – and I average one comment from either my mom or grandma, I’m a bit unnerved.

    I didn’t put any thought into those pictures. I should have, huh? Thought is really important for writers.

    That said, do I think those family pictures are in any way sexual? No.

    Am I surprised that people might think they are? Yes, actually.

    Have I ever been totally wrong before, and needed correction? Too many times to count:)

    Could this be one of those times? Absolutely.

    If I could take another minute of your time: the pictures I refer to in the post, as I mentioned, are ones taken by young ladies in closets, bedrooms, and closed-door private places. In the hundreds of fun teenage-girl summer photos we see (many in swimsuits at the beach), these bedroom pics are notably different and more provocative, even to the casual observer.

    Do I think this is a different situation than a photo taken with your siblings, or your dad, on a public beach? Why, yes.

    Also, I should mention that it is possible to privately block images and posts from friends, without publicly “unfriending” them. We’ve found this to be a respectful solution that protects both parties.

    My main hope in writing this was not to muddy the water (and I regret my pictures may have done exactly that) but for our young people and their parents to grow in wisdom and joy. I am truly sorry if my pictures troubled you, or if you still see a double-standard.

    Thank you for your thoughts, especially those who were gracious. You’ve given me much to consider as I press on in parenting, and faith (and writing) and I humbly ask for your continued prayers as I do so.

    Peace, to you and yours,

    Kim

  34. Perhaps not the best pics to use for the subject matter, but not wholly inappropriate, either. I find the issue to be contextual in nature: the pj-clad girl sans bra with a torso thrust in her boudoir vs. boys on the beach in long boxers horsing around and posing for the camera. Which picture would your parents display in the den? Apples and oranges, really.

  35. My hat is off to you!!! Wish we had more parents watching their kids that close….Nothing wrong with “Old School”

  36. Josh, you’re sexualizing teenage boys in swimsuits? We played shirts and skins in P.E. in elementary for crying out loud. There is a huge difference between being perfectly modest in a normal fashion, and taking self portraits the give the image of being sexy or the intent of looking sultry. Don’t be ridiculous. It’s not the fault of anyone here that women have more to cover than men, either. It’s just the way we’re made.

  37. She was spot on in the article…I did find it awkward that she posted multiple pictures of her boys shirtless etc. And no, I do not have a problem letting boys go shirtless at the beach…or even taking pics and posting them on Facebook…but in the spirit of the article it did not make sense. It just seemed off that she was making such a GREAT point about girls being modest etc in the pictures that they post…she has some good looking teenage boys…I did think the shirtless, “muscle” poses might have caused some girls some issues too…oh well…taking away the pics she used to illustrate, I think it was a GREAT article! =) Well worth the read…but if you have young teenage daughters I might read it aloud to them instead of having them read it themselves…as the photos sent mixed messages or alluded to a double standard!

  38. I do agree with the last comment that both genders should take a more modest approach. By choice, my girls turn away from certain advertising with a sexual undertone, however, at the beach it is common sense that all participants will be in less clothing. There is a massive difference between a girl posing with the intent of exuding her sexuality and brothers playing with their little sister on the beach. Honestly, intent is most of the equation. A bedroom is easily equated with activities of a sexual nature….. boys on a beach fooling around is hardly sexual. Why was Gidget and her buddies on the beach never equated with sex? Because of the intent. However, two people giving the look as they disrobe in a bedroom leads an audience to one place only.
    So rather than picking every detail of the original post apart, look at the big picture, the heart of the message, and appreciate that someone else is trying to encourage self-worth to girls who are desperate for the wrong kind of attention. The bigger picture people, is what should be focused on, not the petty details. If more parents were clued in and doing their job, this woman wouldn’t have to be.

  39. I am not saying I know exactly where to draw the line here, but I am a Wife of 26 years, a mother of 2 men and one women and a grandmother to a 4 year old girl. I also am a leader of Christian teens. The fact is girls are taught to flaunt their sexuality and boys can’t help seeing it everywhere. Modesty needs to be taught to both sexes and sex needs to be brought back to something special between one man and one woman that make a commitment for life. God created it to be beautiful and all that the world tells you is that it is fun and always exciting. That isn’t true nor the full picture. The wrong kind of sex and the wrong timing has awful consequences for both males and female. It can leave you feeling like something is wrong with you because it didn’t work like in the movies and no one tells you why. We keep it too much of a mystery and then they want to try it all the more. There are other pleasures in the world to be discovered that don’t have such life-long consequences. As for women being visual I say yes we are. Don’t tell me you have never just looked at your husband doing some everyday thing and suddenly found him sexy. I find my husband sexy with out his shirt on. Girls look as much as boys and they judge them to be worthy of the “first time” or not more by sight then not. Why else do they giggle over the “cute” ones only? We all have to be careful to stay pure in thought and deed. A good parent monitors and sets examples while applying what they believe is best for their family. Keep being good parents, you will keep making mistakes, but I congratulate those that do what they believe is best.

  40. Well, while I may agree 100%……I do agree with the fact the boys in swim trunks was perhaps an ill choice, albeit, boys obviously don’t wear shirts swimming, its the point of the post that seems to loose punch. Girls are, simply put, stimulated by visual pics nowadays. A product of the society. Was it once weighed heavily in the male corner only yes, but not so now. I have two of each sex and two are teens. I promote modesty in both their lives. I was a youth leader for 2yrs and several girls struggled with lust. Visual lust. So, I would like to encourage you that the sum total of your article is WONDERFUL we do the same. The little blurb of pic choices need NOT take away from that!!!!
    God Bless

  41. Seriously, can we get you to start a parent organization? Cause the world needs more parents like you guys…
    I applaud you..YOU ROCK MOM!

  42. Its a family photo, her daughter is there too. Really people? You can’t see the difference between a beach photo and a photo of a girl in a sexual pose on a bed? Wow.
    I think it was an extremely well worded post.

  43. WOW!! Being the mother of four boys and two girls, everything I have prayed for and taught my children for the past 23 years is in your brain!!! How does that happen? Thank you for putting on paper what a lot of us protective and caring and loving parents think every day. God Bless! ~Linda

  44. Same goes for pictures of the boys just in swimsuits. There are girls out there who judge a boy by his physical appearance instead of the character they exhibit. The Internet is good as is social media as long as we remind and teach our children the consequences of improper poses or posts. If a girl in too brief a swimsuit is wrong so too are some pictures of guys poses, strutting like peacocks trying to gain the attention of females. But I agree with everything you said. Another thought: Magic Mike, ladies went for the written word and story, not the scenes of half to completely naked Channing Tatum et. al.? Or Tiger Beat with the young shirtless “studs?” If you want to show your guys having fun at the beach and share with family, send privately. You put it out there for all to see, it’s there for good. Not everyone on the social media has pure intentions, male or female. Some female teachers have gotten in trouble by being overly fond of good looking young men. Just be careful ALL parents which is what I think this post is truly about.

  45. I saw this link in my facebook news feed. As the mother of four (two girls and two boys), the title peaked my interest, so I clicked on it and began to read. The photos immediately stirred something in my spirit, as they certainly don’t match Mrs. Hall’s words and admonitions.

    I dislike provocative selfies (of girls AND boys) as much as the next mom. However, I think we need to be VERY, VERY careful to avoid putting the responsibility for purity on the shoulders of girls and women. Blaming them for their provocative dress, poses, flirting, etc. is a dangerous precedent. It is often the reason boys and men are not held fully accountable for their “impure” actions toward girls/women.

    I agree with other commenters that girls/women are sexual beings too. We are stimulated visually as well, and thus, we ALL have the responsibility to understand and protect ourselves. My message to my sons and daughters is not to judge and blame others but to be accountable for themselves.

  46. I absolutely agree with your post….but, I have a question! Are you not at all concerned with the girls having impure thoughts about your boys? I believe, and its my opinion, that modesty is best with both genders…..and if my son walking around with no shirt, showing off muscles, is going to cause young ladies to think about his body instead of him as a person, then he needs to be covered as well…..it works both ways in our house!

  47. I applaud you Kim. Great job. I have 3 daughters and 2 sons. I review their facebooks as well and will delete their account if they are posting things they should not. Or delete friends that post inappropriately, including boys. Yes, could have posted a different picture for your purpose but the ones who are saying negative things, are the ones probably doing it or allowing their daughters to post it. Boys in bathing suits on the beach is appropriate in public. GIrls in just a towel or pj’s without a bra in their bedroom,NOT appropriate! Like they say, “when you throw a rock among a bunch of dogs, the only ones that yelp are the ones that get hit”.
    Stay strong and a brick wall when it comes to this issue. If you give a mouse a cookie……..

  48. As a mom of 3 boys (11, 9, 7) that are inching closer to teenagedom and 1 daughter not quite 3, I love this! They aren’t on Facebook or Instagram or Twitter yet, but there will be evenings much like this in our home one day. Thanks!

  49. What an excellently written article, Kim! Our fellowship recently hosted a purity conference in Cape Town which was well attended, clearly highlighting the thirst for many to guard their purity.
    With the news rampant with stories of women & children raped & subjected to horrendous abuses, I applaud you for being a family that takes a stand to help your sons see women as being worthy of dignity & respect.
    I loved the pics you posted! I’m a mum of a teen boys & what I saw was beautiful family memories on a summer’s day. I’m guessing that’s the spirit it was intended to be posted with. The pics of the boys together & the one of you & your son together brought a heartwarming smile. The one of your son alone, slightly angled away, made me feel wistful – a time for contemplation. I’m disturbed by some of the mudslinging thats resulted at the bottom of the post because of the pucs, but I guess we all see life through different frames of reference.
    It takes courage to share your convictions in a public forum. Thank you for doing it with strength & without apology. I stand alongside you raising sons who are taught to treat women with dignity & respect. To guard the hearts, feelings & purity of the young ladies they interact with. I too pray for the parents raising the future wives of my sons, that their daughters will be women of Godly character & principles.

  50. So, it is ok for your boys to run around shirtless on the beach, but if a girl arches her back too far, they get the boot? Baloney. This whole modesty conversation, girls are special flowers ‘under the coverings of their daddies’ is ridiculous. Boys have impure thoughts because they are boys. Teach your boys how to deal effectively with their sexuality; parents of girls should do the same. You didn’t grow up in some kind of prudish era where no one had sex outside of marriage. Be realistic with your children. And, stop encouraging double standards between girls and boys. It weakens girls’ power over their own sexuality, experience of themselves, and confidence in themselves. I’ve seen this happen to young women I grew up with.

  51. Love this! Such a needed message in the world I live. I would love to pass it along, but…I actually hide most beach/pool photos because of this reasons you make in your blog post.
    Unfortunately, I have some FB preteen/teen girls who would be going on & on about the pic with the good looking guys in their swim shorts. I guess it goes both ways.
    Thanks so much for addressing this issue and don’t stop leading the way for the rest.

  52. Liked the message for my daughter, but why was it important to include ‘half-clothed” pictures of your boys in this post? I like to teach modesty to my boys as well.

  53. I am glad there are parents rearing their boys the way we are our girls. We are teaching them that dating is for marriage and that there is no need to “go out” until you are ready to make that step in your life. There is plenty of time to do the “grown up” stuff in life and the kid time is far too short to waste. We pray that our kids future spouses will be Christ followers that have made the tough decisions to honor God and their bodies by waiting. I see nothing wrong with the pictures of your kids on the beach as it was obviously intended to be pictures of and for the family, not them posting “selfies” in order to look attractive to someone else.

  54. What a great post! I am glad that you have rules in your home to better your boys and to teach them strong moral values! I feel the same way about everything you said.

  55. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE! I just had almost this exact conversation with the girl my son is dating over some of her posts. Hopefully it made sense and was even encouraging, but I have to leave it in God’s hands now and pray my son will make the right decision.

  56. I am a mother of 6 boys and 2 girls. As I was reading the article I was so happy to see someone saying these things. The first time I saw a picture of one of my daughters friends in her bedroom I was taken back. (even if the pose wasn’t bad). You were right on! I was also a little surprised with the pictures posted of your sons. No, they are not sexual but I often hear girls also talking about, “He is ripped!” or “He is buff.” I agree with the fact that girls look. A family vacation….how fun and they are great pictures. I know you have wonderful memories. Just with the point you made in the letter, which was GREAT, the pictures did not match. Thank you for taking a stand to try to protect your boys!

  57. I can wholeheartedly agree with the text, for sure. However, modesty was for both Eve and Adam. As far as i read in the Bible, there is no such thing as public situational modesty. Just as you wrote this post about the friends of your sons, I implore you about the same thing with your blog post. My teenage daughters are in the room with me right now, as i read this blog post. Perhaps one of them could walk by just as I scroll down the page and notice the picture of the boys. We shouldn’t think that just because it’s “normal” for males to go without a shirt sometimes that females can’t be attracted to males in such a way it makes them lust. I mean, seriously, my mind can really take me places when I see my husband without a shirt on, as I am sure most wives can relate. It’s not any different with other males. We have to guard our minds and protect our hearts, keeping them pure. It doesn’t matter if they are in their bedroom or on the beach, making pouty faces or just smiling and having fun, if they are lacking in modest clothing, Out of love, Kristie

  58. My son and daughter wear less swimsuit when they swim competitively – nobody sits around commenting on how skimpy or sexy they look. It’s just swimwear and it’s for sport. Those photos are no more provocative then the ones taken of my child in their swim season photo. The message is a great one. I support it entirely. And yes – the message is for both guys and gals – always keep your future spouse in mind- and respect the person you are talking to as an individual, not an object.

  59. I completely agree! I love the way you come across in this post– very understanding, forgiving, and loving. Being a 20 year old girl in today’s culture isn’t too easy, but your post encourages me to continue dressing modestly– that attracts the right kind of guy.

  60. Thank you. I recently had a discussion on my Sweet Basil facebook page with my readers about, you guessed it, Miley and why it’s about attention and approval. I was shocked that there were a few girls defending her and they’re right to be women and show off. Ooops, I guess that they forgot that a sexy pose actually only turns them into an object thus saying, “Please don’t treat me with respect”. THank you for teaching your boys that in this world of lust, they want something that is lasting and amazing. I hope and pray that my girls will one day find honorable young men who will treat them as if they already know their divine potential.

  61. Wow, I love your post, and as a mommy of two young boys, I am especially interested in teaching them about this. There is a huge difference in the picture you posted with your boys at the beach and a girl in her pjs on her bed trying to look sexy. Anyone on here who is saying that is the same thing is not being honest with themselves. Boys and girls are equal ONLY in their WORTH, everything else they are not equal in. So, to treat them the same lacks wisdom, just at it lacks wisdom to treat two people the exact same, everyone is different in everything but WORTH. Girls unfortunately bare too much of themselves online, it’s not what I want for my boys to see or to pursue in a girl. I’m in complete agreement, those friends would be de-friended at once if they acted like that., that’s called wisdom. Yes, the most important thing is to teach my boys what to do with the images and thoughts once they have them, AND one of the things they can do is to stop looking at it, stop putting themselves in situations where they can see that kind of stuff, which means de-friending some people. I likewise do not want to see boys in their underwear trying to be sexy (Beckham’s commercials come to mind) But this is quite rare to see, most of the time it is the girls being inappropriate. Not to say that girls can’t be beautiful, but to act sexy in the their pjs is one of the many things that are highly inappropriate. I can tell you my husband would never have been interested in me if posted that kind of thing for anyone to see, including him.

  62. I once went to a lecture on Islam, and I distinctly remember when the topic of women’s dress code was addressed. She had interviewed several men regarding why they believed women should wear burqas (the full body covering). Every Muslim man told her that if he were to see any part of her body, he would sin – whether in thought or deed (forceful deed, really) – and it would be her fault. Thus, this is why we continue to hear that rape victims in the Middle East are stoned or executed in some other manner. If they were raped, it was their fault. How dare they tempt a man? He could not control himself.

    Before I continue, I will say plainly: Your post does not go to that extreme. But, such thinking is the building blocks for such ideology.

    While I lament the fact that modesty is not what it was, the fact is that reality – the world as it is and not as you think it should be – will continue marching on whether you train up your son well or not. And in that world, women wear revealing clothes. Do I feel like there are good reasons for wearing extremely revealing clothes? No. But I do recognize that if a woman chooses to wear something revealing, that is her choice and hers alone to deal with. If your son goes out into the world – where he cannot demand that people abide by his ideals – he will see a great deal of bare skin. If he chooses to feed off such imagery and continue in it, that is his choice and his alone to deal with.

    We live in a world, as seen in my example of Islamic culture, that has forgotten what it is to choose. We have become so reactionary that we have forgotten that no one can force us to be angry, to hate, to harm. I sometimes recall the harm others have inflicted upon me, and in that moment, grow angry. But they aren’t even there! I chose to dwell on such memories and I alone made myself angry.

    There is only so much of the world around you that you can influence or pretend to control. There will be girls who walk in front of your sons, nearly as naked as the day they were born. And what should they do? Blame her outfit? No, they should be trained to remember that before each reaction, there is a choice. They should learn to slow down and remember that they can choose to feed off such things or let it be. Focus on your boys, and regardless if girls listen or not, it will not be the demon it once was.

    Until then, I feel that such blaming and shaming (is it stockholm syndrome or have you forgotten the ridiculous pressure on women to be ‘attractive’ in hip or Christian culture?) only tells your sons, “It’s their fault that you’re lustful.”

    Not so. A man is one who takes responsibility for his actions and reactions. It can get hard – as it can for me and I am a woman with a highly imaginative mind – but that does not mean that he suddenly is no longer responsible.

  63. Thank you so much for this! Teenage girls have no idea what they do to boys by trying to be sexual. I have been much enlightened by my husband as to the extreme difference in men and women and just how visually stimulated men are. (Any replies denying this dichotomy are not true and show a defensive person rather than one seeking the truth.). I had no idea what immodesty could do to a guy until I had some very honest guy friends in college and grad school. Teenage girls need to understand their part in not providing further temptations for boys. Thank you for raising your sons to be men of character. As I raise my daughters it gives me a glimmer of hope after looking at a world full of permissive, child-centered parenting, and a morally decaying nation. And do not take these negative posts to heart, ‘in this world you will have trouble…’ Clearly your boys innocence is shown in happy times at the beach, which is in sharp contrast to the intentionally seductive photos of females that was mentioned.

  64. As the mother of a teen son, I must join in and agree that the photos of your sons are inappropriate. I believe that while you are earnest (and correct) in your assessment of the modesty issues surrounding young women and social media, I also believe that you are incorrect when you say that the photos are not sexual in nature. Had the photos been of your children standing together, playing volleyball, building a sandcastle, flying kites or other appropriate beach activity, I would have no issue with them. However, they are purposely posed in such a way as to accentuate their bodies, something that you are adamantly opposed to young women doing.

    Does this mean that I don’t have a problem with inappropriate photos of girls/teens/women on social media? Of course not! A discussion of self-control is definitely in order! Both the girls that are posting these photos and the boys who see them, whether intentionally or unintentionally, must be involved in ongoing discussions with their parents about self-control, self-respect, respect for others, maturity and a host of other characteristics that indicate readiness for a mature relationship.

    There is much more to teaching our teens about relationships than teaching them what we as adults see as inappropriate dress. Generosity, self control, kindness, etc. are a great way to determine the character of a person. Let’s camp out there, instead.

  65. good perspective!! Totally agree about the half dressed boy pics. I have both boys and girls and think showing lots of skin is not the best idea for pics! Keep up the good work on this open communication!

  66. Wow. Great article! Always going to be those that find something wrong about it. I never once gave a thought to the pictures you chose of your sons. It looks like family friendly beach pics to me so don’t let those that are negative (especially the ones that throw the “double standard” and “Christian” punches) steal anything away from this. :) They are always there waiting to find something wrong with any truth.

  67. i am in a interracial relationship. we weren’t judged by our pats mistakes, there was only 1 requirement. they had to love our spouse, like they love us. those who couldn’t were ejected from my life. im glad you weren’t my mother in-love who treats me as one of her own. she doesn’t mention my past or any mistakes i might have made, she only loves me for loving her son and accepts me as a daughter. oh, and if your sons do happen to find a girl you dont approve of, the more of a stink you make, the more he will love her and eventually make the mistake of marrying her (if she was truly not right for him). i went through 2 mother in-laws who judged me by my past, and because of it, the third mother in-love has enjoyed me for 15 yrs, someone who stood by her son during his cancer when many would have walked away. the girl you reject, could be the love of his lifetime. but i guess that would be his loss, not yours.

  68. I totally agree with the fact that girls and women should not be posting inappropriate pics online or through phones. My issue is that you have pictures of your son’s with shirts off and the thing that i think is wrong is that your wanting girls to stop taking half naked pics of themselves but your posting pics of your half naked sons that get girls to only look at them sexual regardless of them having a fun day at the beach!!!! I don’t do pictures that show my body like that and i don’t want any guys looking at me that way so even if it is with my family I don’t take half naked pics of myself! Regardless of whether it is with a swim suit or not in a swim suit! I just think we need to have high standards of what our Lord sees when anyone post pics like that!
    19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.
    1 Corinthians 3: 19 – 20

  69. The words & concepts that you present are WONDERFUL. That said, I cannot help be notice that you posted shirtless pictures of your sons. As a former teenage girl, I know that to teenage girls this is a temptation to lust. I think your comments would be MUCH more impactful, if the pictures that you shared where not sexually tempting to the young ladies that you are reach.

  70. I don’t know who said it, but someone said “Young teenage girls are not nearly as stimulated by sight as young teenage boys are.” I once was a teenage girl. I can say with 100% certainty that sight is the FIRST part of any attraction. Hence the phrase, “love at first sight”- so please, if you think that teenage girls are not “turned on” by a young boy or man’s looks- I ask you to enter any teenage girls bedroom and see what is all over her walls….. I assume only a scant few are bare walls, and more likely filled with half-naked men. Sibilings or fathers present in a picture or not, once you see a half naked person, you cannot “unsee” them that way. I was so “in-love” with so many singers, actors and models when I was young, and I promise it did not have anything to do with the way they comforted and shmoozed me. It was all physical attraction! (PS- I am a mother of 3 fabulous boys.)

  71. Love the article. I understand the types of provacative pics you are talking about. I got that, but I still noticed your son’s pics too. I wasn’t ready to cry “double standard,” but I’ll say this: What you are getting at is intent. Those braless, pj clad, puckering pics by girls were taken with the intent of being posted online, your pics are fun family pics. But then, a boy could look at the beach pic and think of how “good” he looks and post it online with the intent that the girls will like it. So maybe his intent was not being sexy when the pic was taken but it could be posted in that manner. I also had to laugh at how someone said boys always swim shirtless. We use rash guards around here for boys and girls. Another funny comment was the one about how the swim trunks are modest because they go to the knee. Girls are attracted to the lowcut pant and seeing the hipbones, abs and chest. So, yes I agree with your article, I just don’t think your standards are high enough for your own son’s modesty. Those same girls who post provocative pics see pics of boys like this and post hoping they notice.

  72. Imagine if i judged my husband because he couldn’t have kids, i would have left 15 yrs ago, instead of giving up what i could have had, to have the true love of my life!!

  73. Thank you so much for raising Godly boys! I hope my future mother in law raises her son the same way as you raise your boys

  74. Thank you so much for this. I’m a mom of all boys and though they are young now this is something I will have to deal with soon enough. So well put!

  75. This is well-done and I loved it until I saw the accompanying photographs of the boys. Ummm – shirtless?? Have you had the opportunity to hear what teenage girls say when they look at those pictures?? It absolutely goes both ways.

  76. While I whole heartedly agree with your basic message here, as the mother of 5 daughters, you probably don’t want to know what they said when I showed a couple of them this picture of your boys posing all hot, flexed an sexy there on the beach…it would make any normal girl who didn’t normally struggle with wearing modest swimwear want to wear a bikini…it just seems like you might not be holding the same standard for the generic girls in this world as you do for your name brand “Hall” boys.

  77. Please take off the pictures of the boys without their shirts on. The same thing goes for girls looking at boys! I would LOVE to share this, but can’t with half-dressed boys on it.

  78. I like the article, and the strong family bond, but I’d be interested to know how tables would turn if one of your sons were to end up being gay?

  79. Great post. I think the picture of your boys (and girl) on the beach is very tongue and cheek, not sexy and not trying too “strike a pose”. Just a family behaving naturally.

  80. Love it! I am a single mother to a 9 year old boy. I will be the same way or worse. Thanks for voicing the way that I feel!

  81. As a mom of soon-to-be three boys, I LOVE THIS! And, what a great message for all the young girls out there too!

  82. I have two teen boy’s and have taught them that it is their responsibility to develop the Godly self-control required to view females as fellow human beings, worthy of full respect – regardless of how the girls are dressed. As I told my 14 year old recently, “I don’t care if a woman walks up to you topless, you’d better look her in the eye and treat her like any other human.” My boys find the idea that it’s the job of girls to prevent them from being disgusting pigs by dressing a certain way repugnant and insulting. If a man looks at a woman and mentally undresses her, that a problem with his self-control and character which needs to be addressed. Yes, there are women who dress scuzzy. But especially with young women, that’s in good part because they’ve been taught that men are such stupid pigs that the sight of a scantily clad woman will drive them to peruse her.

    How about instead of worrying about what your boys see (and how other humans who you don’t control dress), you focus on teaching your boys to manage their own thoughts and sexuality. That’s their job and no one else’s. Trying to protect them from seeing girls dressed or behaving in objectionable ways simply leaves them with under-developed self control and the idea that it’s female’s job to do that heavy lifting for them.

  83. Thank you so much…. As a 2nd round Mom… (raising a grandson), I have often wondered how I was going to handle these situations…. I will follow your example… very wise indeed… thank you again

  84. I think there is a lot of correct statements on both sides. I have 4 daughters (oldest is 12) so helping them to be their best self as they grow up in a social media dominated world looking for instant praise and gratification scares the crud out of me. I see girls posting pictures that are way too suggestive (10-13 yr olds!) and i wonder who is in charge and teaching these girls. We talk about modesty in dress, attitude, behavior, etc. We can’t put all the blame on “oggling” boys and men. We as girls and women have responsiblity in this. But I also see boys obsessing about their bodies now too in a way that never happened in the past. My 10 yr old nephew wants to diet because his friend said he doesn’t have a six pack! My nephew is NOTHING close to overweight yet he wears a shirt to swim becuase unlike the rather skinny neighbor boys, he has some very age appropriate and not overweight meat. Boys are judging each other too. And if girls are looking at the boys and constantly walking around with a phone and seeing boys posting stud selfies and having constant access to these pics on their instagram feed, then the problem goes both ways. So boys don’t need to have their instragram feed filled with girls arching in their bedrooms or posing with their girlfriends in bikinis in the hot tub. And girls don’t need to see boys flexing and stretching and going all Mr. Universe on Instagram. If any of this is happening, then no one is thinking about the person inside. Only the traights they are choosing to highlight. I am married to a man who is 39 yrs old. I joke and call him my 39 yr old son. But these men have very basic biological reactions to visual stimulation. He has seen some things pop up on facebook, daughter’s of friends of ours, and he asked me to talk to the mom and see if it could be taken down. He said “I can’t see Katie at church on sunday knowing I just saw her and her 17 year old friends jumping on a trampoline in bikinis. I can’t unsee that.”

  85. I’m so glad some could put in words the way a feel raising a teenager boy that has just entered high school!!! Love it

  86. Thank you so much for posting this. I’m a high schooler myself, and even though I’ve never posted anything that I think is considered innapropriate, it’s wonderful to have constant reminders like this. I constantly pray for the man that I will fall in love with as well, and that he will be raised in a good Christian home, and be taught things such as you are teaching your sons now.

  87. brilliant, I’m saving this to share with my daughter, she’s counting down to when she’s old enough for a FB profile and I’m SO worried, AND for ways to handle the girls in my boys lives. Thank you!

  88. Thank you for perpetuating the myth of female purity and reinforcing the trope that men are (in regards to sexuality) thoughtless beasts who are incapable of self-control, reason and respect.

    I believe in the radical possibilities of pleasure, babe.

  89. Ironically however, your boys are shirtless and posing. Girls struggle with boy’s bodies too! On the other hand, kudos to you for standing up for purity in your home! Your boys are blessed!

  90. Yes! I am the mom of 4 boys and I feel like the “dear (boys name) are all over the place. Everything I read is blaming the boy, telling the boy to be a gentleman, to treat the lady right, etc… I work very hard to raise decent, caring, valiant young men but a boys brain is a boys brain and you are right…once they have seen it, it cannot be unseen. Girls can be ladies and boys can be gentleman and if everyone does their part it will be better for all youth and their parents. Thank you so much!

  91. Double standard much? I appreciate the sentiment, but posting pictures of your men without shirts doesn’t say much for your moral standards. If you are concerned with people behaving modestly online then don’t post pictures of them in that state of undress in the same blog post where you are asking young ladies to behave like young ladies. I’m sorry but that’s a double standard that needs to be addressed. I’m NOT saying its ok for a girl to post those pictures online. In fact I agree with you there. What I AM saying is that sets a dangerous precedent. So the next time you want to tell these young ladies not to do something, maybe you should make sure the pictures you post are showing that same moral compass you’re asking these young ladies to have.

  92. Thank you!! These are the kinds of conversations we have with our daughter, and we are always trying to help her see it from the boy’s (& his family’s) perspective. Many, many thanks for helping us raise Godly young men and women.

  93. I think you hit a nerve here, Kim. But, it’s a good nerve to hit. May God add His blessing to your excellent, albeit touchy!, message, and to the lives of your handsome boys. Keep up the encouraging writing!

  94. Agreed on many levels….young girls don’t realize what their digital footprint will look like when THEY are wives and mothers. That being said, they are practicing the same poses and facial expressions that they see on commercials, magazines etc. THEIR moms should be as wary and watchful as you are. Nor do I think your boys or husband should be wearing t-shirts; they’re on the BEACH. But whose poses are they copying? They are a message to girls…look at MY muscles, I’m hot. I’m sure the pictures were taken in fun; it looks like you have a lovely family having a good time on the beach. I just think maybe they were the wrong pictures to post with this particular message. It took away from your well said and all too true words.

  95. Kim
    I just want to encourage you. With a beautiful young family, you should be proud to show them off. If we are honest with ourselves as moms, we know there is nothing at all sexual to bare chested boys.. Beach attire for boys is completely non-sexual, as are the strong man poses. I think most of these people are forgetting how impressionable young people are. It is the WORLD that tells young ladies it is ok to be secure in your sexuality and show it. They can be happy and proud as young ladies without pretending sexual poses and acts. I am proud of you and your stand and if these moms want to block you, let them. Just rest in knowing God has given you a special gift of encouragement and continue using it.

  96. Wow this is amazing! I totally agree with everything you just said and I am also a teenage girl! My parents raised me to watch for all this stuff in my pictures and if there was ANY way for someone to think sexually of me I would take it down or not post it! Praise God that their are still parents that raise their boys to not look at bodies! It gives me hope that there will be Real men out there when the time comes for me to get married.

  97. I agree that women should be modest BUT it’s hypocritical to blame the girl for taking those type of photos. YOU should teach your sons to respect women instead of seeing a little bit of skin sending them off the edge and into their rooms to masturbate. It is even more hypocritical to be reading through this blog and seeing shirtless photos of your underage sons when someone else could easily objectify your sons and rub one out at the sight of your half-naked sons.

  98. Thank you for this post! It’s just funny to me to read some of these comments–I agree that it is a little ironic that your boys were shirtless in these photos, but to me, it does not take away from the material point. Bedroom photos and things that would normally be considered private should not be on the internet for all to see. Swimming–normal, public, everyday activity (even there, modesty is an issue if you feel one way or another about bikinis, speedos, etc.) But irregardless, it’s funny that so many people that have commented here are, once again, trying to make men and women the same. We just aren’t and that’s the way it is! Men swimming with their shirts off is a completely normal and acceptable thing! Shirtless girls, NO (at least not pertaining to our society as a whole!) :) Does this mean girls are being cheated and “it’s not fair” that men don’t have as much to cover up! Well, it’s not their fault–our bodies are just made differently and yes, I think girls do have to take more care to be modest. I agree also with intent–sexual innuendo through bedroom photos and seductive poses as opposed to playing on the beach, COMPLETELY different! Parents of both sexes should teach modesty and responsibility–and girls may bear more of that burden simply because of inherent differences in anatomy and thought processes. Bottom line: good message and I love that you were kind about it and not demeaning in anyway (as opposed to some who commented on here). Thank you!!

  99. Well said!!! I completely agree with you 110%. I really enjoyed reading your post. I hope & pray that we will be able to raise our baby in the same manner.

  100. Wow, I read this article not long after you posted it (when there weren’t any comments) and the pictures you posted did not even cross my mind. As you stated in your response comment, maybe they weren’t the best pictures suited for the article considering the subject matter, but give me a break people! These are family pictures at the beach. The boys are in entirely appropriate beach attire. For goodness sake, people are just on attack mode.

    I agree with some commenters that we need to teach our boys that they are responsible for their own thoughts/actions and need to learn to keep them in check. I do not want my boys to ever think that anyone else is responsible but themselves. I’m sure you do the same. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t also teach our boys to avoid things that make it more difficult to keep that in check. Just like we, as adults, should avoid certain things to help keep our own actions and thoughts in check. So yes, I will tell my boys to avoid pornography like the plague, to not see movies full of filth, and to block friends (both male and female) who post any sort of inappropriate materials/language. Not because those people are at fault for my kids’ thoughts, but because like it or not those things do make it more difficult to keep our thoughts and actions clean. And why wouldn’t we try to make it easier on ourselves??

    Anyway, I think your heart and message are absolutely in the right place, and people have just blown up over it because this is a touchy subject these days. Everybody take responsibility over your own thoughts and actions, and don’t be so offended when people try their best to censor themselves from all the crap that is out there.

  101. This was a wonderful way to approach such a difficult and timely subject. I had all girls and thankfully, they were grown before the explosion of social media. But the lesson was the same, if you want a man of worth to spend the rest of your life with, you need to be a woman of character! I always told them to dress immodestly is unfair to the young men. Two of them have married Godly men and the third is dating a peach! Thank you for raising great young men who know how to respect a woman!

  102. So serious question, what happens when you realize your sons can still have sexual thoughts and desires after looking at a picture of a girl who isn’t in a sexy pose and who is dressed within your standards of modesty?

  103. Good points, but be careful not to be too controlling or judgmental. Girls are sexual too and they need to figure out their sexuality as they mature — especially if they want to have fulfilling married lives. Ideally, we want our girls to grow into a sexually confident and aware women, not women who associate their sexuality with shame. That is a heavy burden to bear.

    Just something to think about.

  104. This was a wonderful way to approach such a difficult and timely subject. I had all girls and thankfully, they were grown before the explosion of social media. But the lesson was the same, if you want a man of worth to spend the rest of your life with, you need to be a woman of character! I always told them to dress immodestly is unfair to the young men. Two of them have married Godly men and the third is dating a peach! Thank you for raising great young men who know how to respect a woman!

  105. Thank you Kyle David Greenberg and mb! Sad it takes men to so passionately and eloquently defend their sisters. I am a woman of faith, I am mother to a teenage son and pre teen daughter and I exhort both to be self disciplined and practice self respect and respect for others. The implication that “half naked” girls are evil and “half naked” boys are just being boys is so ridiculous and outdated; I am so sad to see it trumpeted in social media by modern moms!

  106. Perhaps you could have just told your sons what your wrote towards the end of the article – not to linger over the photos – instead of writing up a letter publicly telling girls how you think they should behave? I see so many blog posts chastising women and girls… perhaps there should be more directed at boys and men about controlling their own minds, moving past “questionable” images, not holding women responsible for their thoughts, respecting all women as human beings regardless of how they’re dressed, and not viewing women as sexual objects.

  107. I’m glad there are mom’s of boys who are as concerned about this type of thing as I am as a mom of girls. I pray my girls end up marrying boys who have been raised like this!

  108. Thank you for this I too have a son and 4 girls. I wish I had the strength and integrity that u have. Good luck and thanks for sharing

  109. I agree with purity and modesty is equally important for boys and girls. Not only in attire but also and most importantly in thoughts and actions. Unfortunately we will not escape the woes of society when it comes to sexual exploitation because it is everywhere so it has to start in the heart. With that said, I lost the momentum of the message due to the nudity of the boys. I am sure the mother has plenty of pictures to choose from and chose from this selection (which, to me, is exploitation in and of itself). If you want to drive home a point of modesty, because it is important, one should also practice it or find yourself judging. My children (ranging from 22-2), both boys and girls, are saving their first kiss for marriage. Purity is more than clothing. My daughters and sons, all 8 of them, where t-shirts over their swimsuits when they co-swim.

  110. These boys are posing with their sister on the beach where its public and we wear swimsuits. Not in our private rooms like bedrooms and bathrooms. And not in towels or in provocative poses with no bra on or the maleness exposed. I think there is a huge difference in the photos here versus the type of photos she is describing.

  111. A very nicely written post. But, like others mentioned before, the same can be said regarding boys. Boys, too, should be careful of what pictures they post of themselves. Girls, too, are interested in a half-clad boy. And as a mother of two young and beautiful girls, I will also be watching the pictures that boys they know post on social media and use the same rules you have instilled in your home. Things need to go both ways on this one.

    I do appreciate you writing this at this time as it is a good reminder for us as parents not to be slack on the social media front. Keep up the writing!

  112. Love it! I have three girls. The oldest coming up to the age where she has begun the posting on social medias. Trying to teach and explain why some pictures and behaviors are appropriate and some are not is a very hard lesson in the world today. I honestly did not think of any of the things the others noticed. Enjoy your wonderful day!

  113. Angel! How ironic that you use that word. You’re no defender of women as long as you use the most dehumanizing and violent word that exists in the English language.

    In your previous post you said something about how she should teach her sons to respect women. I hope you find the time to teach yourself.

  114. Oh. And also, if you don’t think that girls/women get distracted by boys who act flirty on social media you are wrong wrong wrong. Girls quite often go for boys because they are HOTTIES and not because they are modest, caring, upstanding young men. Don’t you want your sons to attract girls who want to be with them for their character and personal qualities too? I sure do. :)

  115. I’m upset and sad seeing so many people on this blog jump on the bashing bandwagon! You’re all just followers. One person criticize’s and suddenly everyone is a critic! Focus on the great point that this mom made. I have a feeling the folks being defensive in their comments are the very ones who know and allow their daughters to post inappropriate pictures on social media. It hits a nerve towards those who don’t like to be called out. Way to go mom on a topic that desperately needs addressed in this day and age! Written from a high school teacher.

  116. I have four sons and one daughter. I would hope that I am able to instill in ALL of them a sense of modesty, but also that while EVERYONE – girl or boy – is responsible for her/his own actions, a person is more than one facet. If you want to delete their friends – well, your house, your rules. But you’re boiling down the entire person to one photograph. Would you say Katerina Witt – a 8-years-running National champion, 6 time European Champion, 3 time World champion, winner of two Olympic gold medals and competitor at a 3rd Olympics – should be written off because she once posed for Playboy? That doesn’t mean I want my kids (all figure skaters) to see the photos (I’m not sure I want to see them!) but her spirit, grace, poise, and determination should mean more than a handful of photographs. You’re teaching your boys that these girls, no matter what else they are, are worthless if they take a picture you don’t approve of.

  117. I have 4 sons. At the beach they wear swim wear not ski clothes. Their shorts are over their waist and at or below the knee and not white. We are followers of Christ. It is odd to me that finding beach pictures problematic and equated to girls sending pictures in a towel from their bedrooms. These are NOT the same.
    My daughters wear tankinis and I post their pictures from the beach and pool. They will NEVER be allowed to post pictures from their bedroom. it’s different. IMHO
    I pray my girls meet boys that have been raised like yours. God bless

  118. Wow! It appears a lot of people aren’t getting the point! LOL….I do not know the author of this post…a friend of mine posted on facebook and I came here to the link. She isn’t demeaning beautiful girls or even saying if they are wearing bikinis and short shorts that her boys have to block them. She is asking these girls to consider what they are doing behind closed doors. She is posting to these young ladies who are purposefully using their bodies to get attention by posting pictures of themselves in sultry, sexy ways. She is speaking to the girls who’s purpose is to lure guys. She wants them to respect their selves. She is referring to what is the “heart” of the picture. This post isn’t about wardrobe, it’s about attitude and heart issues.

  119. LOVE THIS!!! I have a 7 year old son and 5 year old daughter. LOVE! LOVE! LOVE!

    I pray my future daughter-in-law and my future son-in-law grow up in the same kind of home. If yours weren’t so much older than mine I might just be praying for a Hall in-law :D

  120. Why can’t it be both/and?

    Girls need to seek modesty- not JUST for the sake of men/boys but for the sake of CHRIST! We need to cover up as a kindness to guys because we know how the male mind is wired. God created the male mind and it’s not all bad, by the way! I teach my daughters that it is the right thing to do for others as well as themselves. For what it’s worth, I don’t think that just because we’re dressed modestly that men can’t be attracted in an inappropriate way.

    At the same time, men/boys need to guard their hearts in Christ Jesus. My boys need to know that there will always be someone out there – either a literal person or an image- that is immodest. They need to know how to protect themselves. It is an issue of the heart… an issue they will always deal with on some level.

    Please, let’s stop saying it’s all the girl’s fault (not that I’m suggesting the author of this article is saying such). Please let’s stop blaming the boys! It’s a SIN problem. We are ALL vulnerable.

  121. I love the post but do somewhat agree on the pictures. Love the post though – and definitely agree.

    Also just wondering… did you expect this much attention to your post? LOL.

  122. I LOVE this article, it’s fantastic, & thank you SO much! However, as a mother of three daughters & one younger son I find it very unfortunate that you chose to post pictures of your sons half naked with an article encouraging my daughters to present themselves in a pure way.

  123. Kim – I don’t know you, but I saw your blog post on a good friend’s facebook page. I LOVE what you wrote. Please do not take any of the negative feedback to heart. I have raised 2 girls and have one left at home. I have taught them to dress modestly and have also taught them IN DETAIL what kind of physical reaction & thought process dressing immodestly can provoke in young men. Because I have taught them that how they dress directly affects what people think of them and reflects their morals, or lack thereof, they have CHOSEN to dress modestly. This is also a sign of self-respect. Girls can’t dress “scantiliy” and then blame the boys for looking at them as a sexual object. Anyone who says that it is boy’s fault if he looks at a girl that way, is dillusional. People dress to fit the part they want to play. It is the world’s point of view that it’s OK for girls to dress like they want to be viewed as “sexy”, then go after the men & boys who look at them as sexual objects, with disgust and acting offended. I love your point of view and hope and PRAY that my 2 unmarried daughters will be blessed with husbands who have been taught as your sons have. :) My son-in-law was taught right, thank goodness! He is an amazing father & husband. My daughter earned that, by dressing modestly and attracting the right kind of man.

  124. As a mom with many daughters thank you for your post. I am dismayed by some of the comments but that’s the chance we writers take when sharing our thoughts and ideas. My 12 year old daughter found the pics of your boys funny, never once noticing that they shirtless. She noticed that they were at the beach which promted her to remind me that Dad promised we’d go, but the trip hadn’t yet materialized. She noticed that your daughter had three big brothers and will probably never date, she listens when her dad and ONE brother tells her she’ll never date.

    I get that we each have our own opinion. I also don’t think that you were placing yourself in any other catergory than a mom who has boys who notices girls and we live in a world that tells young women that “getting noticed” is the thing to do if you want to be popular. I get you, my boys are hooked on some commercials that we girls don’t get the appeal of… anywho…. thanks again for the post.

  125. P.S. Your boys are adorable! Looks like you have a lot of fun as a family, and that you have a very happy family. :) Playing on the beach in a swimsuit then posting the pics on your own, PERSONAL blog is not a reason for others to find fault. However, in the words of my kids “haters gonna hate.” LOL! Keep up the good work!

  126. Thank you for your post!! I am a mom with 3 boys and see nothing wrong with your pictures. Keep raising good boys and praying for their future!!!

  127. I wish there was a “LOVE” button on here…. I just love how you worded this post!!! I wish more parents were keeping an eye on their children’s social networking activities! Keep up the great work!!

  128. “Men swimming with their shirts off is a completely normal and acceptable thing! Shirtless girls, NO (at least not pertaining to our society as a whole!) :)”

    Wow, I totally missed where she stated the girls were actually topless in these photos! I thought the mother mentioned girls who were posing seductively or in their PJs.

    Posing topless is indeed a major issue and most likely a FB TOS violation. Additionally, if these girls are underage, this could become a legal issue. Instead of writing a letter on FB, the mother would be far better served by contacting their parents directly AND reporting these topless teen pics to Facebook.

  129. Young women are not the guardians of young men’s chastity. Young men should be trained to keep their eyes and their hands to themselves. You set entirely too high of a burden upon young women to dress to some sort of imaginary standard. It’s imaginary because you don’t know if a mere shapely ankle is going to cause some young man’s imagination to run wild. *shakes head* Seriously, you moms are not doing your daughters any favors at all by imposing this JUNK on them.

    Oh yeah, and what about the young men without shirts? That’s something of a double standard here, don’t you think?

  130. thank you :) i’m a teenage girl…. and i’m wayyyy opposite the road of sexy, even if i ever tried! but that’s such a good perspective. so thank you thank you thank you. it brings a smile to my face to know that there ARE teenage boys desiring to follow and obey the Lord and that there IS hope. i pray EVERY single day for my future husband, that he’ll be a man after God’s own heart. and that he’ll pursue me with whatever is true, just, honorable, of good report, lovely…(Phil. 4:8) and that to find my heart, he’ll have to really really REALLY search God with his entire being. and it sounds like you are raising your boys to do just that. so thank you :) you’re doing the right thing. i want to encourage you, and others, myself eventually included ;), to keep following God and obeying his law for your young men. train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it. (Proverbs 22:6)

  131. Thank you for steering *just* clear of saying that women are responsible for men’s purity of mind. Of course, reason (and Jesus) says *men* are responsible for their own purity of mind, so thanks for not putting that on them.

    Now, I will continue my search of Christian blogs for one post — just one — that talks about modesty the way that the Bible does: in terms of expensive clothing and haircuts and jewelry, and in terms of one’s own vanity, rather than about anyone else’s lust.

  132. “Playing on the beach in a swimsuit then posting the pics on your own, PERSONAL blog is not a reason for others to find fault. ”

    So would girls posing in bikinis by the pool be ok? If not, why not?

  133. I agree with all you said but its pretty one sided. What about boys? Having all girls I have seen some pretty nasty pics of some teen boys. I’m sure that you meant this towards all teens not just girls.

  134. So thankful for another parent on the same page! We have four boys, two of which are teenagers, who think we are old fashioned! Thank you!

  135. I also came across this post randomly. Firstly, let me say that I thought the message was sound and very clear. Closed door pictures of anyone posing provocatively are unacceptable, period. I would hardly liken that image to one of a family romping on a beach, and the allusion that it is unacceptable for boys to not have shirts on on the beach is laughable. She made no comment on girls beachwear, simply that photos at ni-night time in skimpy jammies in your bedroom were not ok, specifically when coupled with provocative poses. I liked the comment that compared photos as living room wall appropriate or not. I think it’s amazingly off base of the anon person who said girls were not stimulated by visual images, and I applaud the person who said it’s equally important to teach boys how to behave. This is what the author is saying she does with her sons, in case you missed it: Discuss these images and why they aren’t appropriate before removing the girl that posted them. Jeez people, think before you type.

  136. I have to say I thought the choice to include pictures of your half-dressed sons doing manly poses was a really odd choice and took away from what you were trying to say. What an amazing double standard.

  137. I enjoyed your article and having 4 boys and a girl of my own I will keep this in mind as they grow older. My oldest is only 8 and has special needs but it does not mean he will be immune to the lure of social networking as he gets older. So many things to keep in mind as my kiddos grow.

  138. I am with those who say you are contradicting yourself when you posted your half naked boys while chastising skimpily dressed girls. I understand it is a beach picture where males walk around shirtless but so do girls in bikinis. Your boys SEE those girls in bikinis growing up and are probably quite used to it. So the girl posed bra-less? Same thing as a bikini top. Selfie in just a towel? Girls wrap themselves in towels on beach too. I think you are just passive-aggressively calling those girls in the pictures sluts for posing selfies. Teenagers, girls and boys both, are at the stage where they are narcissistic so selfies seem to be quite normal behavior for teenagers. Skimpy attire is very similar to girls walking around on a beach or swimming pool or spa…..but NAKED is something else. I would agree with you if you were talking about THAT. Or posing in sexual way like hooking the top or bottom to give a peek of a private part, pulling up shirt to give a peekaboo of the bottom of the breasts…along those lines…that is blatantly sexual…and, yes, slutty.

  139. I agree with those who have pointed out that teaching your sons that they are responsible for their own behavior would be an invaluable lesson, rather than putting the burden of responsibility onto the girls.

  140. I didn’t read the other comments, but I don’t see how you can post this lovely read, and include your half naked boys and think that is okay or any different from what the young woman was doing. If girls are supposed to be fully clothed for online photos, then your boys owe that too.

  141. No offense- but your article sounds judgy and preachy. #1. Your boys are flexing and showing off their bodies. Those photos seem to have the same point as the girls’ selfies, to get the opposite sex interested in their bodies. I encourage my boys to NOT photos like that, but you don’t see me writing a judgey post about boys that do that. #2 Wait until your daughter is that age to judge those teenage girls. If your girl makes it to 19 without doing something stupid, judge away. #3. Kids need to learn to manage their own media. Dictating who they can and cannot contact on fb or social media past the age of 15 will teach them how to a. create a private account to hide from you, or b. go crazy in college because they never had the chance to exercise their decision making skills in high school.

  142. I was really liking the post until I saw the picture of your boys. I still like your message and hopefully you are also teaching your sons to be responsible for their thoughts as well – it can’t always be the female’s fault. I thought you were going to say how the picture of your boys would be the male equivalent for a girl but that never came. You may not think it is a sexy picture but you are their mother and I bet there are some teenage girls out there who would beg to differ. I do applaud you for your hard line stance and not being afraid to enforce some difficult rules at your house!

  143. I love this and am going to make sure my teenage daughter sees it. We may even try going through our kids social media.

  144. you do realize at some point they are going to lose their virginity? whether is 15 or 24 whats the difference if they arent married?

  145. I posted this to facebook with this comment “I love this blog article !!! I feel so sad when I see pictures of young ladies AND young men who are clearly trying to be sexy . I know it’s often seen a lot everywhere…..but it doesn’t have to be you. ” thank you ! I don’t have children of my own but would respond the exact same way. I do have the opportunity to be in the lives of our teenage and 20 something step children and unfortunately don’t have the opportunity that I would like to as far as helping to raise them. May you be continually blessed in your practices to raise your children with integrity. Keep up the great work!

  146. Sometimes it feels like I’m one of the only Girls who still keeps it classy and respectful in photos now-in-days. It’s nice to know there are guys being raised to look for more than just a low cut shirt and Skin tight shorts.

  147. As a girl who was emotionally and mentally scarred by attitudes like you are promoting, I’m very grateful I married a man who wasn’t raised by parents like you. I would be in a very dark place if I had married someone who believed it was okay – in fact, good and important – to shame women and to, even if inadvertently, treat them as if their bodies and whatever affect that may have on them is more important than the girl or woman as a person. I’m guessing you have enough arguments or links to read through, but I wanted to add my voice because this triggered a lot of hurt and anger – not only for the girl I was, but also for the girl my three year old daughter will be. Hate to think she may one day read something like this from a mom of her friends.

  148. Dear Mrs. Hall,

    I like to think of myself as woman of integrity and it is true that you will not find any scantily clad photos of me on my Facebook page. This plague of teenage girls feeling as though they need to exploit themselves to gain attention disheartens me and I fear that women do not value themselves any more.

    You would think that with these views, I would be an advocate of your article. However, it concerns me just as much as the racy posts of some of my female friends. As I said, I fear that women do not value themselves any more but I do not think that blaming young women can be blamed for the impurity of male society today. You may recognize the weight of the accusation you’ve placed on young women when your eight-year-old daughter is a bit older.

    Now I would like to address the issue of your article itself. You said that once boys see girls scantily clad, they can never unsee it. Did you ever think that perhaps the rules of human psychology extend to both genders? Once I or some other young woman (whom your article targeted) has seen the pictures of your sons literally half-naked on the beach, they will never be able to unsee it. The way I see it, the flexed muscles of your sons are just as sultry as the arched backs of their female friends.

    Of course, you could argue that everyone dresses in such a way on the beach and, of course, you would be correct. It seems to me, however, that if you are concerned about your sons viewing scantily clad young women you may avoid the beach altogether. I am interested in hearing your feedback to my comment.

    I’m glad we’re friends.

    A teenage girl

  149. I read this to my husband because we’ve noticed tons of our youth group girls doing this exact same thing. He asked for the link and plans to read it in our high school Bible class tomorrow. THANK YOU!!

  150. I thought it was interesting when I read the article and then saw the pics of shirtless boys flexing their “guns” – I see I wasn’t the only one surprised! haha! Great thoughts and I’m glad you guys sit around the table to hold the standard high for your boys! I pray that they will continue to walk the straight and narrow! My parents raised me and my brothers with the same standards – I’m very thankful for their influence and that my husband and I are continuing the heritage with our young kids. *Probably* won’t be posting pics of them in their swimsuits while talking about purity though. ;-)

  151. I appreciate this post, but like others had said I had to quickly scroll over the pictures of your sons and husband who were bare chested. I teach my daughters not to look at bare chested men in public to give them the modesty they need but don’t seem to recognize and I teach my son to do the same to scantily clad girls. We do need to take our thoughts captive but I don’t think it’s demeaning to women to teach them to dress modestly and stay covered just like I don’t see it as demeaning to request my son cover his chest. It’s not shaming, old fashioned or horrible to expect everyone regardless of gender to dress modestly and pleasing to the Lord. To the comment who said that women aren’t aroused or easily swayed by looks like men are – then please explain why we pay to see movies with Hollywood hunks in them. I’ve had to quit watching T.V. shows before because I found myself becoming too fond of the actors who are good looking men and they had their clothing on! It’s not just men who become attracted to those of the opposite sex by just looking. So please, I’d appreciate it if you extended the same care in posting the pictures of your men as you want the women to do – I don’t care if their at a beach or swimming pool – I do my best to not look or linger on bare chested men – and honestly I’m also okay with avoiding swimming areas during the summer because of this.

  152. I totally agree with everything you said. It needs to be said to these young ladies over and over again until they get it. However, I find it ironic that the pictures you chose to post of your sons are of them in the state of half-dressed. Did you know that once a female sees them in a state of undress, she can never un-see it? Please reconsider these pics.

  153. As a mom of a son and a daughter , I find your article harsh towards girls. We are an Indian Christian family and we are trying to raise both our kids modestly. We dont allow our son to wear basketball shorts to church like we see many Americans do here. Our daughter does not wear pants to church and we dont allow short shorts or booty shorts as its called here . I see young teenage girls here in churches wearing soccer shorts ALL the time. They consider it modest. Moms allow their girls to wear such clothes and then the boys are expected to shut their eyes???
    Whats with that? In India ever rape is blamed on a women for dressing provocatively. We fight a battle in our country that just does not seem to be ending. I agree whole heartedly with your idea that girls should be more modest and treat their bodies as it were a Temple of Christ. Yes that is 100 % true and I support it. But dont blame ALL girls in general. In this country modesty standards are crazy! Short shorts and gym wear is supposed to be ok for gym and church and dinner outside.Maybe if young people of both sexes dressed properly and Boys were taught to respect girls and Girls were taught to respect their bodies and keep it Holy and pure till matrimony then we would not have all these issues. Your article though accurate and true is harsh towards girls. You make it sound like Girls are to blame for everything. Thats not the case. Boys look! They will look at legs in soccer shorts, girls in skinny jeans which are way too tight and arms in tank tops. Lets also teach our boys to respect women and look at their faces instead. You are brave in writing this article but it could have been toned down a little. After all one day your little girl is going to be a teenager also .

  154. Okay, I just read through the comments and saw that my comment was a little like re-inventing the wheel. And I read your response to the other comments. I’m sorry to have posted before reading all of them (well, many of them, not all). I hope you don’t feel bashed and please don’t feel like you need to approve my previous comment. I have both a son and a daughter, both too young for this to be an issue yet, but I think about it a lot. I want my daughter to respect herself enough to dress modestly and I want her to care about the effect of her actions on others (boys included). But I want my son to realize that his thoughts are his responsibility. He must choose to see a girl as a human being first and foremost.

  155. While these young women are certainly responsible for what they post, let’s not forget that they are products of a culture that we have created, and sharing your concern for them. a culture that you have perpetuated by hanging out pictures of your sons as physical specimen to which young women should aspire when looking for romantic relationships.

    Next time instead of a public, self-righteous, sharply judgemental critique of their posts, why not write a heartfelt, compassionate, and kind note sharing your concern for them.I think you might find that it would be received much more warmly than this patronizing vitriol. If you are as concerned for these girls as you claim to be, do what you can to guide and shape them instead of publicly blasting them.

    And while you’re busy being self-righteous, don’t be too proud to think that it won’t be your daughter one day. How might you want someone to respond to her?

  156. I do appreciate the concept of the article. It is something we do with all our children with ALL inappropriate photos. Some of my daughters’ female friends have been blocked in the interest of the young men who are on their pages. Also, we have been known to block boys as well.

    While I feel you have the right to determine what is acceptable dress in your own family, I have the right to disagree. In our family, all people are covered. No one in our family is allowed to be shirtless in public. The basic thought is that naked bodies are to be shared with one’s spouse and not with the general public.

  157. I read the article and loved it. I think some of the comments about the boys are over the top. What boy goes to the beach and covers his chest? It hasn’t been until recent years that it’s become taboo for a man to go shirtless. I consider my family to be normal not legalistic, modest people. I think some people take pleasure in being “right”. In short, get over it, boys wear swim trunks at the beach.

  158. I love your article. The pictures of your family are wonderful, too. I love that so many people out there noticed your beautiful family portraits and had the discernment to *consider* whether they are modestly dressed or not. I do NOT, however, love the critical attitudes with which some responded to your article. I, in no way, consider your article to be hypocritical or ironic as some called it. You have a different definition of “modest” than some out there. These are guys at the beach (not to mention your daughter too!) wearing swimwear that is as modest as one can get without looking like you’re Amish or something (with no offense to the Amish intended. Just saying any more modest swimwear than these would be well beyond the social norms of our society).Their swim trunks aren’t falling off, or too short, nor are they sitting so someone could see up a pant leg, or making sultry bedroom poses, or anything like that. They’re posing to look muscular, as most young men like to do, especially young men who aren’t ASHAMED of their bodies. I grew up ashamed of my body and often wore an over-sized t-shirt over my bathing suit — “in the name of modesty” — but it was too much. My heart was great, but the teaching I had received went too far. We don’t expect our kids to swim in scuba gear at the pool, so I find their swimwear totally appropriate.

    I hope not too many people missed the point of your wonderful article because of their overzealous need to point out that you’re not as extremely modest as they are.

    Thanks for the great tips! I hope to be like you when my toddlers are teens!

  159. Grace for everyone. Truly after raising three teen daughters and dealing with social media on many occasions…..This is my two cents only from my own experiences. 1. Often I was upset by something I saw on my daughters wall. But truly it usually was not something that was from her rather someone else. 2. Take a look often to ensure your kids get it regarding what is seen by others etc. 3. If parents truly do not know what is going on with their kids then they don’t want to know. Pointing it out to them or others will not help the situation. Even if your heart is coming from the right place don’t do it. UNLESS there is an immediate danger. And I have found that calling a third party like a teacher, coach or mentor is better than the parent. Keep your self out of the middle if possible. 4. Social media means more work for us as parents but also more eyes for us to watch out for our kids. There is good with the bad. I can check out what is going on at a party, in a home, at school IF I NEED TO KNOW. Example, “mom i was invited can i go?”…Check it out you will find the skinny on the situation with a few clicks. 5. Looking to often will drive you to drink or go crazy. Some of the things we had to work out in life growing up were done outside the parent view. And although you need to know what is going on getting too invested can hurt, badly….Going through it all over again is hard. 6. For those posting pictures that are indecent. a. ask your son or daughter to block them so their feed is not coming in. If you are asked or they are asked kindly explain that your parents didn’t approve of some of the posts. 7. If you see someone who is really struggling by posting about them selves seeking attention all the time…..pray for them, send them a private message with zero judgement but rather telling them how smart, funny, witty, courageous and so on and so forth, you get the idea. and LAST, if your child has social media you should always have the password to gain access. ALWAYS! After all of our experiences often it comes down to kids having too much freedom without enough parental involvement. And our kids need to know we will be checking in. Again, be in balance about it. Don’t go crazy. But I have a baskent and when I decide it is phone or computer check I go around and collect and check in with them. If there was something a bit on the edge or over the edge I would ask them to sit next to us and view and have them read it out loud to us. That did the trick!!!!! And our kids tell others that hey I can’t do that my mom and dad check. We take the heat!

    All of this has worked for us. Take what you like and leave what you don’t. Lets help each other rather than rip one another apart.

    Becasue we all realize that these kids are desperate for someone just to love them. See them for what it is truly not what is actually being shown.

  160. while I dont think the pics of your sons are inappropriate, I would say that from now on think before you post. yes those pics of your boys are different than the bedroom poses, but they are nonetheless pics of boys without shirts on. if we are going to speak on modesty, let it first start in our own homes. girls can just as easily linger over the boys pics and then go on to daydream about a day on the beach with them, is that what you want? I do see your point about the pics that girls post and I agree that they should not do that, I do not want my son to see things like that as he does strive to live a life of purity. I think in the day and age of internet and access to so much info and social media that parents have to be more vigilant than ever before

  161. Sorry you’re getting so much negative feedback on here! I saw a bunch of kids on a beach being goofy. That’s all. I agree that there is a serious difference between what I see on Facebook and what I see on here. It could just be me. I have a daughter and although she is only 8 months old, I try to set a good example of modesty. I have always been a very modest person, and I can only hope I pass it down to her. Modesty is beauty. Powerful post! Congrats!

  162. Thank you! I have three girls still home and I constantly try to watch what they say, what they post and who they watch. Good to see you are too! Good job Mom!!

  163. Pictures… no pictures… who is responsible… who’s not… whatever…

    BOTTOM LINE: Parents DO NOT spend enough time policing their children’s data access and social media. Does your child have a phone with data & text? Do you KNOW who is texting/Face-booking them in the middle of the night? Because SOMEONE is… I guarantee it… if you’re not keeping an eye on it. Your teenage girl should not be accessible to boys her age at 3 a.m. …but she is, if you are not keeping an eye on it. Your teenage sons shouldn’t be able to skype into a girls bedroom in the middle of the night… but he can, if you’re not keeping an eye on it.

    And you can spend every moment teaching your kids personal responsibility and the principles of guarding themselves against unsavory influences, but you can’t control EVERY possible scenario or every point of access. You can only teach your kids your best rendition of “the right thing to do” and hope that they are not swayed by the hurricane of lesser standards that swirl around them in the maelstrom of social media. Because there ARE lesser standards out there… there ARE parents who are NOT doing the same… there ARE children, who (through no fault of their own) are attempting to make moral sense of the world without a strong guiding hand. It’s not their fault, it’s ours, but you can’t ignore something just because you can’t control it.

    I read an article just today about how teens on Facebook are manipulating the privacy settings on their accounts so their parents/family cannot see things that are posted there. They want privacy… they want to be able to live their lives without the prying eyes of their parents. They want to diminish the parental controls and make their own choices. But are they mature enough to do so?

    It’s not an issue of trust. It’s an issue of TRUTH. Parents are not the number one influencer in teenagers lives, their peers are…

    And I haven’t even talked about the predators out there who KNOW the access they can have to your children through unmonitored social media. I don’t know of a single parent whose child has lost their life/innocence to a predator who ever thought “I’d do it exactly the same if I had a chance to do it over.”

    We have five teenage sons… and we’ve worked very hard to keep in touch with their digital footprint… it hasn’t always been easy, and we haven’t always been happy with the things we’ve discovered, but we’ve always tried to use it as a learning experience to make us all better, more conscientious people.

  164. Pingback: FYI (if you’re a teenage girl) | Inspirations from Wake and Sea

  165. God gave me daughters and I’ve tried to keep them modest — in dress and mind. A friend sent me here to read the post — a guy friend who could enjoy your son’s pictures as much as any girl. I suggest a third caution — for those boys not interested in girls, That said, your words hold important truth and I’d love for the girls I know to read them.

  166. As you can see if you say anything with any conviction you will have people who disagree with you. I noticed that quite a few of those were people named “Anonymous.” I appreciate your gracious response. I would just say take heart. May God bless you as you raise your kids.

  167. Hello, I agree with your article about girls in sexual poses being inappropriate material for your sons to be viewing. I understand the difference between a fun beach photo (for both genders) and the intent of a sultry bedroom shot (also for both genders, guys have been known to post inappropriate photos as well after all). This all makes perfect sense, I agree with and applaud your boldness. I do disagree with one statement you made, however, and would like to draw attention to it so you may consider it in the future:

    “Did you know that once a male sees you in a state of undress, he can’t ever un-see it?”

    This type of generic statement can not only offend some males (it sounds insulting and reduces them to products only of their environment through implication) but also, for those men who are leaning toward perversion, this type of belief (which seems to be widespread in Christians now, unfortunately) gives them an excuse to do whatever they want with their thoughts, holding others accountable for their perversion instead of themselves. I have dealt with men like this in my churches before. This type of implied thought, that men are helpless victims to their sexual desire is irresponsible in Christianity and dangerous in the secular world (every heard a rapist say on the stand “she was dressed so sexily, how could I resist her?”)

    Please do not misunderstand me, I absolutely loved your article, and I hope you hold your boys accountable for their thoughts in the circumstance they do see a sexily clad woman, and teach them personal responsibility. I just thought you should be aware, that whether intentionally or unintentionally, that one sentence contributed to the belief that men cannot help themselves when in the grips of lust (which both genders struggle with in different ways, and both can change their thoughts). After all, the first thought is not a sin, it is what you do with the thought that determines whether a sin has been committed.

  168. From reading the previous posts, my reaction to your pictures juxtapositioned with your post is not isolated.
    Beware that you don’t teach your boys that only girls are vain and capable of objectifying their bodies. Even Christian boys can grow to be husbands whose egos can get in the way of loving their wives as Christ loves the church (selflessly), because they are obsessed with other women’s attentions.
    It’s easy to “beat up” girls for their desire to illicitly seek men’s attention, but our culture won’t change until men realize that they too have the same tendency with women. Our future heads of household should be wise and discerning, and mothers like yourself should look to help train her sons’ hearts to look inwardly at their own sinful self-centeredness. Moms can be blind to (and proud of) the beauty of their boys as well as those Moms who are blind/proud of their girls.

  169. to Mrs.Hall I just love how you tell girls to cover themselves,but in two of the three photos your sons are not wearing shirt.Don’t you think that will cause young ladies to see your boys in a sexual way? They are after all l very handsome young men.Just FYI don’t preach a double standard if you wouldn’t let your daughter take her shirt off in public don’t let your sons.

  170. I am a mom to 2 boys and 2 girls. I can totally relate to what you have posted and I agree. I did read your comment where you suggested that maybe you should not have posted these particular photos of your boys and I agree! When I was a teenage girls those photos would have been awesome to hang on my wall (if I had been allowed. LOL!) Thankfully my parents were involved and taught me to wait for marriage, but girls AND boys have the same struggles. Boys AND girls are called to modesty. We encourage our boys to wear shirts. It truly does go both ways. Do not think teen girls are not attracted to those photos. And guess what photo they can now not “unthink” of when they think of your boys? BUT I do applaud you for your grace and humble attitude! Kudos!

  171. It is so interesting how when people are confronted with truth, they will always look for something to point their finger at, for example, the “scantily clad” dressed boys. Mrs. Hall, you’re doing a wonderful job protecting your boys and raising them in a God-honoring way. Keep up the good work and do not worry about the people who are trying to put you down to build themselves up. Blessings to you and you family.

  172. I love this article. As a dad, I don’t have a problem with the photos of your boys that you chose in the article, however it would have seemed to support your point more so to not include photos of your sons in their swimsuits. Not that they are seductively posed, but after reposting your article on Facebook (because I like your thoughts so much), I’ve received many negative responses due to your choice of photos. Just an observation that I wanted to share.

    Thanks for raising your kids with good standards and for sharing your thoughts on this subject. The line about the male mind being unable to “un-see” something is an incredible truth. Blessings.

  173. “Dear Mrs. Hall, I am glad you have such lovely, pure as the driven snow teenage boys and such a great family that loves to look at FB together as a family but…until you’ve raised a teenage girl, please don’t judge so harshly. Holy crap!! I mean, I HATE that all the girls (and I do mean all) do the duck pouts and the selfies and do so in their bedroom or the bathroom mirror (honestly, how many self portraits can you take??) …but just wait until your darling 8 year old turns 15 and then when you figure out a way to stop it, let me know okay? Meanwhile our daughters are growing up in an environment where looks are prized far more than “what’s inside” and “their beautiful personalities” – and yes, even your wonderful boys are probably guilty of it too (just look at them in their own ravishing bodies – showing off! Wow! What hotties!). Our daughters want to look attractive and unfortunately that translates to how many “Likes” they get. I hope my daughter grows out of this, but until then, yes please, “unfriend her”. Ya, that will help her, I am sure.”

  174. LOVE this blog post! I just read all of the comments and I think overall people are missing the point of the message. As a mother of two daughters I’m already dreading social media and the challenges that come with it as well as the internet in general. I’m teaching my daughters to dress modestly because although it is up to the man to guard his thoughts, it’s also up to the woman not to flaunt what she has and make it any more difficult for them, or anyone for that matter. I see nothing wrong with your photos and I am actually going to have beach photos of our family up in my living room. It’s sad that people are attacking the “double standard” of this message when there really isn’t one in my opinion. It’s nice to know that there are mother’s {and sons} out there who care enough to go through FB pics together for just this reason. I hope and pray that my daughters will marry sons like your boys.

    Well written article and although some people are a bit crazy about their opinions, I think you’re doing a great job. Keep it up and don’t worry about the negative comments. I fully plan to have the same type of awkward conversations with my children. :-D

  175. I really do appreciate the post. I don’t agree with girls posing in their bedrooms in such a manner. I do understand that the pics of your own children were taken during a time of family fun. However, the spirit of your article and these pictures are setting a double standard. I have similar pics of my own kids/husband but I refrain from posting them all over the internet. I believe we as individuals are to dress modestly. I dress modestly for myself and for the sake of my brothers in Christ. If I am dressed modestly and a man looks at me with lust… that sin lies at his door and the corruptness of his own heart. I obviously, do not want my son to see the pics of girls that you described. Nor would I want my daughter to see these pics of your boys. We always mention the man is stimulated by sight, and this is true. However, if you look up the statistics of women that are caught up in viewing pornography it is shocking! Females have issues with their eyes as well as men. I honestly do appreciate the spirit of the post and would even share it…..but cannot due to the pictures.

  176. Amen! This post gives me hope for my three girls and son. We pray nightly for their futures spouses, and my 14-year-old is concerned there is no one else raising their boys like we are raising our girls (and son). I now have hope. Thank you.

    Dabney

  177. I have to applaud you for your comments regarding pictures that girls post on social media. I have 1 grown son and 3 girls at home, 2 of which are teenagers. I constantly watch what my girls wear including my 7 year old daughter. I watch what they try on at a store and I watch what they purchase as well. My almost 13 year old is very modest. She is 5’7″ and developed compared to her friends. When I first saw the pictures that you chose to post along with this I didn’t find them appropriate at all but thought maybe I was just being too judgmental. But then I noticed that others were having the same issues with the pictures. I also remembered just recently as I drove in the car with my almost 13 year old daughter as she almost broke her neck to check out the half naked HS cross country team boys running by. This is coming from a girl that has never appeared to be boy crazy like I have seen a lot of her friends. This is coming from a girl that has always had boys as really good friends over the girls that are so dramatic. My daughter has definitely changed her outlook on boys and seeing boys dress in less clothes doesn’t help in this matter at all. My daughter doesn’t have any of the social media like Facebook and Instagram so she isn’t able to post pictures that she might not seem inappropriate at the time of her posting them. I don’t feel that she is mature enough (even though she is very mature for her age) to handle to pressures that come along with the social media like becoming friends with complete strangers or making the decisions if pictures of her and her friends are appropriate for others to see. I have always been one to dress modestly but I am also blessed to have a husband that shares honestly about what men see when women show a little to much. I have often wondered how that compared to boys or men in the way the dress. I got that answer from my soon to be teenage daughter while watching the HS cross country team run by. Your boys are very cute and have nice bodies so I could see my daughter gawking over my shoulder at the fact that they are in swimsuits showing their nice bodies. I’m not judging at all but just trying to give a different perspective from a mom with a very honest soon to be teen.

  178. I found your discussion frank, open and wonderfully written. I do hope that you will consider this: modesty goes both ways ~ for girls and guys. You eloquently write of blocking a girl from your son’s account because of immodest dress but then you post pictures of your boys without their shirts. Girls lust too and they like looking at pictures of boys that show off skin too.

    Please apply the same standard to your boys that you so rightfully so apply to the girls.

    I really did like what you had to say on the matter. Our children really need to hear this message.

    Thanks!

  179. There was much in this post that I liked but one overwhelming thing that left me wanting. The culture that produces the ability, desire and execution of posting pictures of yourself in a inappropriate way is now reached an epidemic point. The decision to give these fair maidens the digital boot is little deterrent. The same culture is still pervasive and will present tests for your boys and those girls. I would love to hear more on how you are building virtue into these boys. How do they temper the pull of the flesh and not dive into the unbelievable sensually saturated world around them? Do we who see this happening around us have the ability to counter the undertow? I am not in disagreement with the sheltering, setting limits and healthy boundaries but have a greater desire to see how we produce a generation that has a desire for the beauty you eloquently described in the latter paragraphs of your post.

  180. There is nothing inappropriate about boys wearing swimming trunks at the beach. Get a grip, people! And stop trying to act like you don’t understand where the line is. We’ve all seen the bedroom selfie pics she’s talking about and kids having fun on the beach isn’t it!

  181. How about you raise boys that do not think of girls and women as sex objects exclusively.
    If men of integrity divert their eyes and you are raising men of integrity, then why do you have to block these picture on social media.

    Raise men who can control themselves and be accountable of themselves and their actions. As a young college woman, this is what I am looking for in a man, not what you are teaching your sons.

  182. so what about the boys who post pictures of themselves in just their low-slung boxers, flexing their un-covered abs, or posing with their hands in a sexual way…? where is the blog post about how young men do exactly the same thing? what about the way your sons respond to the unfortunately partially clothed young girls in those pictures? you’re chastising only one side of this presently occurring problem in young adults online.

  183. Interesting perspective. While we will have to agree to disagree on most of your points, I do question your use of half-naked photos of your boys throughout this post. Why is that appropriate when revealing photos of girls are not?

  184. Sorry you have gotten so much negative response over the boy’s pictures. There is much truth in your article, and some are crying foul for all of the wrong reasons. At any given time on the planet, at least 2/3 of the men are shirtless. Very few people have the expectation that a man must wear a shirt at the beach, or that he is automatically sexually provocative for doing so. Your photos are clearly intended as family fun, and since they are not even very clear or well lit, your obvious intention was to show they are happy and well-adjusted, fun loving kids. If those folks are sensitive, they can avoid those situations: they can honor their convictions without unnecessarily criticizing others. I raised two girls who are modest young ladies, and it paid off: I have two of the finest sons-in-law on the planet! Girls who are flaunting are insecure, and need encouragement to respect themselves, and not make distressing mistakes that can harm them publicly forever. Straight talk from the point of view of a boy’s parent may be just what they need to think before they post, and wait before they give away their innocence and purity. The thought that girls have to be provocative or promiscuous before marriage, in order to be well-adjusted physically, is a lie with desperate consequences.

  185. I’m really sad. REALLY saddened so many people are casting the first stone on here. wow. just when I was encouraged by your post… then i started reading further, and the body of Christ has to go and get all ugly up on your blog. you shared your heart, transparently giving people insight into your family and principles and BOOM the ones you have aren’t good enough for the average internet joe who has read your story. cray cray up in here! i am starting an adoption blog this year and i’m actually TERRIFIED to be transparent because of this very reason. on the bright side, perhaps you’re getting a lot more traffic than you ever thought possible? : ) i appreciate your sincerity and attitude even through the criticism. It shows that you actually have the very character you are working to instill into your sons. i have encouraged countless teen girls over the last 13 years to wait for the one – that there are young men out there like yours. thank you for raising them well. and thank you for sharing, Mrs. Hall!

  186. Kim I loved your response to those who opposed your pictures. You humbly agreed the choice of pics could have been an error since it “muddied the water” casting a different light on your intentions in the article. God bless your heart, it was in the right place. <3

  187. Ok people – this is ridiculous..My instagram is constantly being updated with girls in silly poses, looking as sexual as possible. The photos of this womans’ children are likely on a wall in the family room. I seriously doubt these girls would stand in public in some of their poses. If they do? they are already working for some cheesy photographer and you have some work to do. I applaud this article. Your pictures are just fine.

  188. As the mom of a little girl and the sister to much younger step-sisters, I really appreciated this article. As a teacher, I freaking loved it. I wish that it could be mandatory reading for both boys and girls, and particularly for their parents. You took some flak over the picture you chose, and I thought you responded to that criticism very well. Having taught teenagers, I think that they’re hormonal creatures, both boys and girls. They think about the opposite (or same) sex ALL the time, both the boys and the girls. Even if we as adults don’t think of the pictures as sexualized, the fevered teenage brain can and does. That said, I love the article. I love the message to the children and the implied message to the parents. I’d love to see more of my students’ parents take as active a role in the lives of their children.

    Thank you for being such an involved parent.

  189. This is awesome…this is the kind of mother-in-law and family I pray for my 3 girls and teaching boys to guard their eyes and save as much of their hearts, minds and thoughts for their future wives. Dressing modestly is a battle these days but not impossible. My heart hurts for the sexualization of children and girls in every single way. =) btw, I disagree with you completely anonymous ^^^. Do the research, see the trafficked children (girls and boys); the broken marriages from pornography addictions; watch tv and remove the blinders… marriage and sex are sacred. We’ve let the culture hijack what really matters and twist and turn it into something empty and shallow.

  190. I’m not going to leave a large rant on this, because I understand what the point of this post was. You’re genuinely concerned about these young women being sexualized by younger men and that its unbecoming of a young woman to post things like that.

    My problem is that you said “Will you trust me? There are boys out there waiting and hoping for women of character. Some young men are fighting the daily uphill battle to keep their minds pure, and their thoughts praiseworthy.” You’re sending a message that they need to clean their act up so that they can get a man, or be “pure” enough for one. Girls do those poses because they are taught that it is funny, cute and yes, sexy. It is taught to them by the media, celebrities, even their classmates or siblings who know no better. So before you tell them that a boy is waiting and hoping for a woman of character, you need to address the fact that women of all ages are beautiful and they are worth more than a picture that makes them feel sexy. You also need to tell your sons that they need to realize it is not okay to instantly sexualize a young female because of a picture she posts.

  191. I see a tremendous difference between boys in swimsuits, on a beach, with their 8 year old sister and a teenage girl in her bedroom taking a photo INTENDED to create an attraction. The point here isn’t how much clothing anyone is wearing, it’s the posing, purposeful half-nakedness that is the concern. I would gladly show the photos included in the article to my grandmother…..some photos I see on Facebook of young girls, not so much.

  192. Though provoking post. I think it’s awesome that you are teaching your boys that the young girls ‘selfies’ are not appropriate and you are explaining to them why you think so. It is what you believe for your household. I also think your own comment about maybe you were wrong to post your boys pictures shirtless. You showed humility and made me like your post opinion even more.

  193. These young men are lucky to have a mother who is actually invested in their future. I’m sure there are times that they doubt it and voice that opinion. Don’t give up, they will look back one day and thank you with all their hearts that you cared enough to voice your opinion and kept them on the right path. I wish more parents would take the same approach. Sadly, there are too many parents who have given up that role in their child’s life and opted to be “friends” instead. They will regret it in the future.

  194. Honestly this post makes me angry. I can respect the ideal that you are going for but think that it’s also very judgmental and rigid. You say you want these girls to respect themselves but you have given them no room to be themselves and grow up in a world where everything they do is documented. Your post gives them no room for being anything than perfect – and guess what they’re not perfect. How is your son going to feel if he falls in love with a girl who doesn’t meet your standards? He is going to feel a great deal of conflict. I am glad you are raising such pure boys but they live in a messy world and if you truly want them to be godly they need to show love and acceptance for everyone no matter where they are in life. You are teaching them instead to shun people based on how they present themselves to the world. Would you also tell them to ignore someone who is homeless because they are dirty, or dressed poorly, or begging?

  195. I am so glad someone shared your blog post on Facebook. I loved it so much I shared it with the tag, “this goes both ways”. NOT ONCE in reading, re-reading looking at the photo an reading previous blog posts did I consider your post/photo hypocritical. I simply found it a nice sibling vacation shit. It was in no way sexual in nature, unlike the ones you describe as taken in the bedroom, with suggestive poses/facial expressions. Honestly, I’m so sorry the whole point of your post is being wasted on such silliness. Fear not, I know it was not in myself nor on those close to me who read it. Keep on blogging. As a fellow Austinite, I am so happy to have stumbled upon your blog.

  196. I read a few of the replies so I know this has already been said more than once:

    Teen girls like teen boys in swimsuits just as much as teen boys like teen girls in swimsuits. I know this because in my home resides a 15 year old girl and a 17 year old girl, both if whom bring their friends to visit, all of whom speak openly about such things in my presence.

    What sort of brain fart occurred as you were writing this? I’d show this article to the girls but, for the same reasons you list for your boys, I will not do so. They’d see right through the hypocrisy and miss your message.

  197. I enjoyed reading your comments and agree entirely. There are young men with integrity and they are looking for a young lady with integrity too. I think your pictures of family at the beach were wonderful! All of the pictures were very nice. This is a good message for both boys and girls. Thank you for your article, I’ll be sure to share it! Good to know other mothers are trying to raise boys to be pure and grow in integrity! God Bless your family Mrs. Hall!!

  198. Not only well said, but also said thoughtful and kind enough to be received by those it is intended for (which is quite notable in these days!) Thank you for writing with such candor and grace. And thank you for raising boys to be honorable men! Those are hard conversations to have, but it is so comforting to know there are still men out there who have been raised with this perspective. God bless you and your family.

  199. Get a grip people! If you find that the picture of boys being boys at the beach is in any way sexual or inappropriate you’re a little off? Ummm, that’s like comparing apples to oranges. Loved this though, and completely agree. Coming from a 20 year old, realistic, college girl. XOXO

  200. Bathing suits are normal wear for the beach, pool, summer. Get over it people…harping on bathing suits?! Posting photos of a family vacation at the beach…normal. Where are people’s minds at for complaining about something like that….I am shocked at what people will pick apart!

    On the other hand, girls OR boys scantily dressed in front of a computer for all to see is NOT normal. Selfies of provocative poses on the internet for all to see…not normal. Way, way different. GOES BOTH WAYS too.

    I will be taking a similar approach with my son…what he sees, I will see too. One of my colleagues would sit and approve FB friends alongside her child. Doesn’t really matter what sex they are….we all have some boundaries to respect, and while our skin is beautiful, we just don’t need to be “selling it” over the internet/FB for others to like us. Learning to love our bodies in a healthy way is what matters.

    Normal photos in normal situations – bathing suits, cheerleading outfits, wrestling outfits, or WHATEVER – are, well, NORMAL peeps. Before you know it, people will be freaking out about babies in photos just wearing their diapers.

    The post has great points….some of the comments are ridiculous…

  201. If more parents went through the social media contacts of their children, we’d have better boys, and in kind, better girls.

    Good for you- being involved in your children’s lives and setting limits- way to go!

  202. I completely agree with your intent of this post. However, I believe your targeted audience, the girls who are friends of your sons, will most likely only see you as a judgmental, condescending Christian who pretends to be a non judgmental Christian. I think you are putting all the own ness of sexuality square on the female. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s great to have parental controls, but teaching your sons how to deal with the urges and being able to look away or see that young woman as a precious child of God instead of judging them. instead you have now taught your sons to be judgmental of any girl who does that. You have judged those girls for a picture, not for who they are. You may have rid your family’s FB page of inappropriate girls, but unless you go everywhere with your sons, I’m sure some of their friends probably have them on their FB, they have the opportunity to see it. i think teaching your sons how not to look and control their urges would be better than just saying they’re awful no room for them in our life. I have many adult friends whose parents taught them their sexuality and bodies are shameful, they tend to have intimacy problems with their spouses because of the guilt they got from their parent. Also, instead of judging these girls and casting them away, maybe you should have asked to meet with them and do a study on self esteem. I have learned that most of these young ladies are lacking something in their lives, whether its a good role model or parents who are present in their lives. Maybe if you were that one Christian woman who talked to them to let them know they are loved and precious instead of saying your out of my sons life, you could have made an even bigger impact to your target audience. I mean you can’t be a parent to every child, but if you took the hand of even just one of those girls and told them they are worth far more than the pictures they posted, that they are a daughter of the King, you would have been Christ in their life. So again, I agree with your sentiment, just not your execution.

  203. Great post, very thought provoking. I hadn’t considered the pics of your boys as being a double standard, and obviously you didn’t intend it as such. It sure has sparked a great conversation tho, and for that, and your intent, I say Kudos to you!

  204. I think you’re GOING VIRAL!!! :) Glad I saw this on my newsfeed. Seems like it might be a little painful but growing pains usually are! And you’re response was humble and appropriate, IMHO. Cant wait to go back and read your other posts!

  205. I believe your post was written with good intentions and smile at the humour and wit you bring in writing it. Raising healthy teens, guiding them to make good choices is the toughest thing to do in today’s world. You have written from the perspective of a Mom of teen-aged boys. As a Mom of a teen-aged daughter, my perspective is different. When your son(s) do make a mistake, exercise poor judgement, I hope it is not shared and judged by an entire family at the dinner table. It is also my wish that your son(s) have true friends who will stand by them when they err and not “unfriend” or be rejected by them and their families for a choice they have made. If we lived in a perfect world…..would that not be grand.

  206. I grow really tired of the argument that says “asking women to cover up disgraces women”. Christ tells us “but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” So guys…..love your sisters in Christ by controlling your mind. Girls….love your brothers in Christ by covering up. Mutual love and respect. Instead of touting your own rights, humble yourself and do what is best for someone else. Like Jesus. (Phil. 2)

  207. As a Christian, and father of two girls and a boy, I’m saddened to see you’re raising your “strong Hall men” to believe they’re helpless victims of biology, walking libidos the rest of the world must protect from themselves. I’m angered that you’re trying to teach young women everywhere that no matter their hopes, dreams, talents, ambitions and desires they’ll never worth be anything more than what the horniest male on Facebook sees them as.

    Please, let your young men discover attraction and temptation as God and nature intended, and trust they have the strength and intelligence to understand the difference between lust and love, and desire and action.

    They (and, not to put too fine a point on it, YOU) need to learn to see young women as people, not only as sex objects.

    Peace
    Ty

  208. There is nothing sexual about a boy in board shorts playing with his brothers on the beach. That is NOT the same as a bra-less or half-naked teenage girl in her bedroom posing erotically. It’s about context, people.

  209. I teach Social Media and wrote the course and I am proud (as a mother of a 12 year-old) that you are standing up and telling it like it is. You don’t have to be trashy to get attention. I would rather my son respect you for your intelligence and inner beauty than think of you in your towel or what you look like going to bed. Respect for yourself is more important that what the “group think” on what you should be showing is. I aim to be a mother just like you and when his “friend girls” transition to girl friends, I hope he becomes the respectful, young gentleman that I have raised him to be and not treat women as objects, even if they portray themselves that way.

  210. I love this blog post. Thank You!! Thank you for speaking out and voicing your concern as a mother. I read comments that said you were hypocritical because the picture with the blog posting shows your boys with their shirts off. Well first of all, they are at the beach and having fun. There is nothing hypocritical about that in my opinion. That is completely different from the photos that you are voicing concern over.

    I do understand your concern about the young girls posting pics of themselves in various poses that should not be put up on social media for anyone to see. I believe that children have no place on social media at all. The provocative, sexy poses, scantily clad, leaving little to the imagination photos that should never be taken, never should be on social media photos…These I have seen by Both young girls and young boys. It frightens me. It frightens me for them, for their safety and for their very lives.
    .
    I am a mom of one grown son, proud nana to 4 precious granchildren, a survivor and an outspoken advocate…I know the evil that lurks and trolls the internet looking for victims…they look for photos like the ones you describe – these kids, both young girls and boys, have no idea that these monsters are out there and what they can do with a simple picture…they also have no clue that with the information they put out on the internet with the 20 question games they play, that these monsters can find out where they live and hunt them down and they can go missing…..they have no idea the harm that can happen to them, the torture, then murder, that can and has happened to countless children. I see photos and information that should be made Private for friend only and then other stuff that should NEVER be put on Social media period!

    If anyone reading this has any doubts, Please check out the information from my friend Bonnie Lang of C.O.P. (Child Online Protection. They are an Internet Safety Organization geared toward kids and teens. Their goal is to educate them about the dangers online and teach them how to protect themselves. They also educate them on the procedures to take if they are solicited, or sent inappropriate materials)

    Both men and women of integrity are not just born. They are raised by warm, loving, attentive, nurturing parents (or parent) who teaches them what is right, what is wrong, how to treat others with respect and so much more. It is the responsibility of the parent(s) to bring their child(ren) up with integrity whether male or female. The weight of responsibility does not all fall on the males. Females also must be responsible and be taught to dress and behave appropriately. When there is a terribly dysfunctional family then naturally the child or children will not have that positive model they need in their parent(s). Me, I was blessed with at least my mom and my grandfather for those positive models and unconditional love and guidance.

    With love and support
    Elizabeth Brawley

  211. Mrs. Hall, you and your husband are to be commended. Hopefully you will not be discouraged by those commenters grasping desperately to their misguided ideals while spewing contorted and contrived perspectives in attempt to deny the natural order of things. I’m confident you will continue to raise your boys to be strong men, unswayed by the pop-culture attempts to redefine reality to fit with those folks’ emotional desire to make male and female “the same” not just equal. I hope that someday they “get it” as you obviously do. Bravo.

  212. Mrs.Hall, I totally agree with your post! And what’s more, there isn’t a darned thing wrong with the photos you posted of your family. The people complaining are either complete dolts, or they are feigning offense to distract from the truth of your message.

  213. As soon as I came across the shirtless photos of your son, this post stopped holding water. I agree with you so much. Girls have no idea what they are doing to teenage boys with their half naked photographs. I somehow think you have no idea what those photos are doing to teenage girls. I am only 30. I remember being 15 pretty clearly and I think I would have loved those photographs. As a mom to 3 boys and 1 girl myself, I have to remind myself often that I cannot hold a double standard when it comes to the genders.

  214. Photos of shirtless boys flexing and you are shaming girls for taking selfies in their pajamas? Can you say double standard? How about we focus on teaching boys that they are responsible for their own thoughts regardless of how a woman is dressed? How about we turn the conversation away from putting the onus on females and sexually shaming women (which is a tired, old pattern) and turn the conversation onto exactly WHY women are made to feel their value is so intertwined with their sexuality? I think this misses the real conversation that needs to happen. I respect your intentions, but disagree with the way you executed it.

  215. Dear Kim,
    Thanks for writing that letter and thanks for your clarification follow-up. I believe both were spot on. I have found that most everyone on blogs feels a sense of freedom…and yes, even aggressiveness that probably wouldn’t be there were it a face-to-face encounter. I am a mother of 17 and 19 year old girls. My husband and I would readily agree with your parenting approach.
    And yes, while I loved the value in your post, I must admit that the points made in response are most definitely valid. I love that we moms can come together to share and end up learning from one another and being encouraged. I wish more and I hope the rest of the posters will be sure to keep that in mind…we are all in this together. We were created for relationship and nothing matters more to any of us than raising up children and doing it well. How awesome…in fact…how very sweet it is for women to get to come together from all over the globe and share our experiences. I think it’s that heart for women and for mothering that brought out this wonderful site from within you to begin with and I’m grateful for you. It is evident in your body of work over the years how much you enjoy serving others. Your family is precious! Many blessings mama!

  216. I see boys enjoying the beach. My husband does not swim with a shirt on, nor does my son. I have no trouble with pictures with boys in a pair of swim trunks. It isn’t as if they were wearing Speedos. And yes, the rules for modesty ARE different for boys and girls because we ARE different. Would you suggest that I allow my girls to go topless just because boys do? How insane!! I do expect my daughters to wear one piece bathing suits at the beach and even at home. We are trying to teach respect and self worth to both our son and our daughters and part of that is dressing modestly, but it also acting the right way as well.

  217. Some ppl posted that the pictures of your sons at the beach, shirtless, was contrary to what you were “preaching.” I disagree. It is normal for boys/men to just wear swimming shorts at the beach. Shirts are not required swimming apparrel for males. The boys are posing together as a family, probably acting goofey to spoof each other later. It would be different if they were taking inappropriate pictures of themselves in their underwear in their bedrooms behind closed doors. I seriously applaude this mother’s courage and standards. There are soooo many girls who wear very short dresses/skirts, low cut blouses/tops, and taunt guys their age with their sexiness. I know this b/c I worked at a high school for 5 years and saw this every day. I understand hormones run rampant in both young girls and young boys. It is difficult at best to try to keep life under control, even having the best examples at home, discussions of modesty and values, and taking your children to church with you every Sunday. A boy will treat a girl how she expects to be treated. It’s up to the girl to set the bar, and insist she be respected. A boy is not going to like a girl any more if her clothes are immodest…..many young men are searching for a girl who respects herself and upholds modest dress. These are virtues that are becoming more difficult to find, and the girls that hold on to them, stick out like a shining diamond. These are dark days & I know how difficult it is for young girls when the world is screaming at them that it’s okay to dress like that-all their friends dress like that, singers and rock stars certainly dress like that, and the world says that anything and everything that you want to do is “okay.” We know that is Satan talking there. We have to arm our kids with the word of God, and let them know throughout scripture, what God has to say about this. Sexual sin has been going on since the beginning of time, and if our kids have a good background of the scriptures, they can be armed to fight the good fight on God’s side. They need to be told and shown since little girls that they are beautiful and smart and funny and all things loveable and wonderful, so they do not go seeking this validation from just any guy that will pay attention to them. Mom and Dad, love your kids. Please don’t be afraid to discipline them when they make poor choices. Don’t even think of being their friend until they are grown. They have LOTS of friends-they only have 2 parents. Don’t let them down.

  218. Oh gosh, please don’t listen to the complaints about the photos of your boys. They look like they are just having fun and being goofy. SO NOT the same as a girl or guy in their bedroom purposely trying to be sexy for attention. This post is FABULOUS. I have a teen girl that just recently had a lightbulb moment regarding modesty! YAY! It came from spending time with good, moral, Jesus loving boys like yours :)
    God bless you and your beautiful family,
    Sherri Ohler

  219. Great post – loved the message and the content – but I couldn’t help but notice the irony in the fact that you posted such immodest pictures of your young boys. As their mom, I’m sure this was just another day at the beach. But for a young girl, this the exact same thing you were cautioning them against.

  220. Funny reading some of these comments. You sure can tell the liberal tree huggers from the rest. Some seem to just wait and read every single reply just so they can pounce with theirs and spew out some more drivel.

    We get it. You don’t think the boys should be in swimwear and blah blah blah.

    Double standard you say? Well you’re darn right it is! And in this case, absolutely nothing wrong with it. You think boys should be taught to respect women no matter how they see these young girls dressed? Well yes of course they should, but it makes it so damn hard as a parent to do so when all they see are these gals disrespecting themselves by their dress and their mannerisms.

    This world is and always will be a Man’s world. Chauvinistic statement? Nope. Not at all. Why? Until all women learn and adhere to the principles and morals that Mrs. Hall has just spelled out, they will always be looked at as objects. You put yourself out there as some “sex object” then that’s how you’ll be treated … forever. The porn industry and Hollywood has done wonders in setting back women. Mrs. Hall is merely doing a small part in helping these young ladies who are surrounded by so much immorality to learn a better path for themselves.

    My two cents.

  221. I was all for the letter until I saw the picture. I really was on Mrs. Hall’s side at first. The picture of the barely clothed children threw me off. It was what changed my perspective on what was being said. I just want to clarify that as to not appear to be rude. It is just what I am perceiving from what I see and read. I would not post a picture of my daughter half naked if I was preaching that boys should be clothed and more modest on the internet (boys do the same thing in their boxers and no shirts), because then I would be doing exactly what I am trying to prevent. I guess I am crazy, but it just does not seem right. I would have posted a picture that had fully clothed modest kids if that is what you are trying to get across to my daughter. You are giving my daughter food for thought when you put the boys out there scantly clothed. I thought that was exactly what you were not trying to do so I thought I would point it out. I just wanted to clarify why I said what I did because I guess sometimes I can come off rude when it is not meant to be harmful.

  222. You do realize that you can’t prevent your sons from seeing girls and women in bikini’s or otherwise scantily clad in person, right? You can’t control what they see or think. It’s also a bit hypocritical to post pictures of your sons and daughter wearing only swimsuits when you’re talking about blocking a girl for simply not wearing a bra under her clothing.
    In response to another comment: It’s sexist and demeaning to women to just accept boys being shirtless (they take flaunting photos in the mirror, too), while you shame girls for wearing bikinis, skirts, and other revealing clothing. Accept or reject both.

  223. In reading all these comments you people that are “offended” by her pictures of the boys on the beach are nuts! You are simply looking for something to be offended by…remember offense can not be given it can only be taken and this post was awesome! Just remember if you will always find what you are looking for! If you are really going on about a double-standard please just keep it to yourself and remember it’s better to be thought a fool than to open your mouth and prove them right.

  224. Your blog was all over my news feed today and as a mom of a teen boy and tween girl I figured I probably should check out what all the fuss was about. After reading what you wrote and then attempting to read the comments that followed I had to take a moment with God before sharing my initial thoughts… thank you for having the courage to speak up for something that is on your heart, thank you for being intentional in raising your children. I am saddened by the need of society to denigrate anyone who has an opposing opinion as themselves and finds the need to point out (or as someone else said, cast the first stone) what they perceive as flaws. I stand beside you in this amazing and hard job of parenting, may God bless you and your family.

  225. Wow….there are a lot of comments and I will admit I didn’t read them all however; your boys are dressed appropriately for the beach from my perspective…swim trunks that are at their hips to their knees…enough said!

  226. I’m a little surprised at the accusation that the boys are “scantaly clad” I do hope some of you do not regularly go to the beach, swimming pool, water park, etc. I did not read her article to talk about girls or boys engaged in fun outdoor activities but rather young girls posing seductively in bedrooms, Which is a big difference. I’m going to assume the author would also see a problem if her sons were posed in the boxers seductively on their beds which would then be on par with the article.

  227. This is a great post — & an example of extraordinary parenting! You’ve obviously set ground rules for your family & stick by them. Most importantly, you’re actively involved in your children’s lives. As for the beautiful pictures of your family – I don’t see an issue with them. Yes, it was ironic that you chose to post beach photos in an article about inappropriate pictures – but there is a HUGE difference in these family-friendly pictures & the negative ones that you discussed in the article. I’ve seen numerous inappropriate pictures by both teenagers & adult women on social media sites. I applaud you for speaking out on it. I often find myself counseling my younger relatives & friends on the dangers of those pictures – not for the incorrect assumptions many on this site have stated, but because I want them to be proud of themselves & represent themselves well. You never know when these pictures might have a negative impact on your future — & once it’s online, we all know it’s there forever.

  228. I love this whole article, However I do believe modesty should be practiced from both sides. In this day and age girls struggle with their thoughts and keeping them pure as well. Boys running around with their shirts off exposing their chests and posting pictures of such is sending a double standard message. Boys can have fun at the beach and still be modest by wearing a t-shirt or A frame shirt (or as others call them “beaters”), tank tops, etc……

  229. Mrs. Hall

    Like so many others I found the photos humorous at best. But that is not what bothers me the most. I understand that you are trying to convey self respect to young ladies, but you lost me at “there are no second chances”.

    I have a WONDERFUL 19 yo daughter. Is she perfect? No, no person is, if we could be perfect Jesus would not have had to die. That said, she did make a purity vow and has kept it. Now I know a lot of parents think this of their children but are hopelessly wrong, but in our case, our daughter has recently had some medical issues and because of her purity vow, the Dr’s were not able to examine her. So I KNOW she is a “good girl”.

    So as a mother raising a daughter who is saving herself for marriage one might think that I pray she find the same. Honestly I do not. I pray that my daughter find a husband who loves God. I also pray that her future mother in law sees her for the precious gem that she is. He can have a past, and maybe that past involves sex. But it is not who we were, it is who we are. That is the beauty of God’s grace.

    So….yeah the beach scenes are a bit brow raising, but alone are not that bad. It is the beach scenes paired with the phrase “In this house there are no second chances”. Tell ya what Mrs Hall, I sure am glad Jesus does not treat us that way. I know many many people who are “perfect” on the outside and feel no Godly love in their hearts, I also know many people who were horrid sinners and are overflowing with God’s love. I want my little girl to be married to a man who understands unconditional love. That is my prayer for her. I would hope you would want the same for your own little girl.

  230. Great post. The teenagers, both boys and girls, could have immodest with all type of clothes on. And I agree with the dad who responded that guys are more visual and gals are more feeling/emotion based.

  231. Wow! Wow! Wow! LOVED this article Kim and you are SPOT ON! What a great message!!! Interestingly, as I read it I did not even really notice the fun pictures of your kids at the beach, That is likely because I am a woman. And God, in is infinite wisdom, created men and women to be different. Which is exactly why your message is so important. Girls simply do not “linger over pictures of scantily clad high-school boys”, It’s not the way we were made. And young woman, because they are wired differently than boys, simply don’t realize the impact those bedroom-bra-less pictures have on boys and men. Kudos to you on a job well done! BTW… I did go back and look at the beach pictures of your family…and what a beautiful family you have! Blessings!

  232. My husband made, what I think to be a very good point about modesty for men and women. It’s not so much about helping each other have good, chaste thoughts, but about showing outwardly that your body is sacred and that you want to be clean in front of God. How you dress is your business, but it is my belief that modesty is something God approves of. Even in the heat of Texas, I still will wear a tank top under a low-cut shirt because I feel that it is right. I know what I have underneath my clothes and I don’t need everyone to see it. The only person that has a right to know me so personally is my husband and the same goes for him. It is not hard to find cute, modest, trendy clothing. Look around. Modest clothing is everywhere! I’m sorry that the author got a lot of negative comments about this, but I believe her heart is in the right place. We can all try harder to be a little better according to our beliefs. My belief is that modesty is important and our bodies are a gift from God and we should show him how much we value our bodies by our dress and actions. Dress to impress…God.

  233. Surely you wouldn’t approve of your sons looking at pictures of women in their bathing suits… way to enforce the double standard of gender roles re: what is “right” and “wrong”. Remember… a bra and underwear are just a bathing suit in different material. While I agree with women watching what they post, its a two way street.

  234. I have spent 20 minutes reading this post and so many comments to the post…. for the record… Yes, maybe the pic could have been different, but ANYONE knows how guys view a pic of a young girl is 100% different than a girl viewing pics of a guy. A girl seeing your “family” pic on the beach in swimwear is SOOOOOO VERY different than a guy seeing a girl trying to send a “message” from a half naked pic in her bedroom. Girls are “wired” differently and God made us this way, it is not the same and your post was AMAZING!!! I have a girl and a boy and my husband and I have talked about different points of view and how things affect us and will affect our kids… these people who are criticizing the article either have no relationship with their spouse to talk about the differences or are just looking to criticize you! Thank you for your kind and genuine heart, I hope this article reaches tons of young girls who might think about those they are reaching with the pics they post!

  235. Kim,
    I thought this was a wonderful Blog post. I completely agree with you that our girls need to guard what they post. I’m sorry that you have received such horrible comments.

    Do I think you could have chosen the accompanying images a little better… as per the comments.. probably so. Do I see anything remotely “sexual” or “Inappropriate” in any of them… NO! Is there a BIG difference in sexual or sultry images? YES, by ALL means!

    It is a proven fact that boys are far more stimulated visually than girls are. Neither my daughter nor I wear bikinis. We would not go around the neighborhood wearing just our underwear, so why do we think a bikini is proper attire anywhere. I am not a prude, but I do believe that you can have just as much fun at the pool or beach in a bathing suit that covers more. I think as Christian brothers and sisters, we need to help one another out. I work with the youth at our church. When we are all together at camp, the girls must all wear one piece bathing suits and the boys much wear a t-shirt at all times. We keep the standard going both ways.

    I read the entire article to my daughter. She is just entering her teen years, and we do our best to dress appropriately. This is as much for my daughter’s protection as for her respect for the temptation that may come for the boys around her. We have to remember that our daughters are also around grown men, and I don’t want my young daughter’s body to be eye candy for any young boy or grown man!

    My daughter knows the difference between pictures that are inappropriate and those that are not. Have I seen some images of boys that are inappropriate? Yes… would I prefer to see boys with t-shirts on, yes, but is there a big difference in poses? YES!

    Thank you for your insight, and for taking the time to raise Godly young men with integrity. I daily pray for the man my daughter will one day marry. And I pray that in these years as they are growing into young adults, that they will grow in the Fruits of the Spirit… including Self Control on both the parts of our boys AND our girls!

    Great message! :) Keep writing! We learn as we go… take each comment with a grain of salt… God Bless you and your husband as you raise your kids to honor God in all that they do!

  236. People who say females are not visually stimulated should talk to me after I see a few shots of Johnny Depp or Sean Connery. Ahh-haaaa-haaa-hhem. This post is good, except it rings out “double standard” loud and clear. Boys without shirts is not modest. Sorry, but it’s true.

  237. Oh MY! I am shocked by all of the accusatory and malicious posts! Can we not have a bit more grace and be THANKFUL for a mom who is rearing her boys with morals and values~~~ of which we don’t see much of these days?!

    Granted, she has a pic of her shirtless men on a post where she was making a statement against young girls being provocative and implicating themselves in a way that we should be embarrassed about!! We should be ashamed that girls of this day feel the need to pose in that manner! HOWEVER, the gist of her post is how the girls of today are behaving and that she is protecting HER children against these behaviors and teaching them to behave with integrity.

    Can we not COMMEND her for standing up for her children and their purity? Can we not stand behind her values and support her in her moral decisions? I applaud her for being one of the few to not allow or even encourage her boys to think of women as a commodity to be disposed of so lightly. One of the few that is showing her boys that they, too, need to guard their eyes and hearts and treat women with respect. If we had more parents that would teach their children to behave with honor and dignity, we wouldn’t have scantily clad women assaulting our eyes on beaches, billboards, ads or commercials!

    Thank you Kim for sharing your values and putting yourself out there (misjudged pics and all) for us to learn from your example! Thank you for teaching your boys that women are much more than a product or a prize to be had. I can only hope that my girls are so lucky to find a young man that has enough respect for their wife. Kudos to you and your family!

    Please read the post in the manner in which it was written and don’t automatically take offense. If you were to go to the beach, would you not have pics like this?!

    Be more gracious.
    Be thankful that there is another human being out there that HAS morals & values.
    Be kind in your words!
    Be the example that you want others to be.
    Support those that are at least trying to do the right thing!
    If you were being biblically correct~ you wouldn’t have corrected/attacked her on the board publicly! You would have gone to her IN LOVE and done so privately first.

  238. This was a great read one I will share with my kids at a family chat time…But I do agree the pics for this post was funny, very handsome boys showing muscles and bare chest. This could make a girl go all crazy. I I truly get your point and was a awesome read but your pictures did not match the read. your pic of your boys is why girls post pics of what you were talking about in some way. but I did LOVE your thoughts

  239. The difference between a young girl without a bra sporting duck lips in her bathroom, and boys hanging out on the beach with their dad is one is provocative and the other isn’t. If you went to a beach and saw these boys no one would be shielding the eyes of their young, because it is not indecent or provocative. Girls need to be discouraged from putting themselves out there in these unhealthy ways. If we wonder why women are treated as sex objects….well here you go folks…this is why.

    The whole “scantily clad boys” statement is really ridiculous, and people really need bulk up on some common sense. This was a great post with undeniable points.

  240. This is such a rampant-double standard. If it’s an inappropriate picture for a girl to take, then it’s inappropriate for a boy. How would you feel if it were girls in bathing suits in this blog post?

    As a teen, I always hated my parents sending me to church camps because I would get a letter in the mail a month before with an itemized list of 15-30 things that girls could not wear followed by a self-righteous paragraph about how young women should dress conscientiously of young men. However, there was never any mention of the boys doing the same. Ever.

    This double-standard especially bothers me when it comes to conservative groups who see men as the social and family leaders. Apparently, appropriate dress is important enough for men to enforce but not important enough for men to follow themselves.

  241. While I do think that there is a fine point to be made about modesty and the power of social media, we need to be teaching both male and female children to respect one another. A person cannot be told how to run his/her Facebook page by another person. Unfortunately, it is a social media trend for girls to post these sorts of pictures. Part of it is about wanting to fit in. is all over Facebook, Twitter, tumblr, and the likes. There may be other reasons as well– maybe they are seeking attention for all that we know. Honest communication is key, and asking them why they posted these photos of themselves this way is a good start. Explaining to them what these pictures could do and how incriminating they may be would be another step.

    What we need to do is teach our girls to respect their bodies, and we need to teach our boys to respect their bodies as well. We need to teach our boys that just because a girl dresses a certain way, we don’t act out on any thoughts, nor do we spend much time ogling at her. This applies to girls as well. Teach your sons to not think sexual thoughts, or to stop them from being conveyed. Do not just harp on the girls who post these photos. Hold your boys to a high standard as well. When I see the statement “You don’t want the Hall boys to only think of you in this sexual way, do you?”, that raises a red flag. I would personally be insulted if I was a male reader in thinking that you do not trust your own sons, whom you have raised, to not have sexual thoughts.

    Men and women are not born with integrity. That is something that builds over time as a person develops and grows. Lead by example, and show both the future men and women of this world what integrity looks like. It is not saying “we will block you if you keep posting pictures like this” (though, you honestly have the right to do whatever you want with your Facebook). It is talking to these girls, and finding out why they are posting these pictures, and having a conversation. It is talking to the boys as well, and conveying the message of respect. Coming from a Christian standpoint, it is teaching both genders how to follow in Christ’s example.

    I do think that overall, this article makes some excellent points that we need to keep in mind. However, I cannot let it stand when men are not held to the same standard.

  242. As I was reading through the negative comments I realized that, the original article was presented in a very positive and uplifting manner. The comments however instead of being uplifting a encouraging were demeaning and most made assumptions that were not based of fact. I applaud the comments. I have a daughter and two boys, thank you for your post as it is music to those who have standards. For those who misunderstood, maybe you should keep your knees down, letting them jerk up like that is un-becoming and not wise.

    PS Use your name if you want anyone to believe anything you say.
    Geoff.T

  243. As a soon to be father and a brother who basically raised his sister, this article could not have been written any better. I am very upset that people feel the need to post negativity on this post. I appreciate your words and faith in God. You sound like a great mother and christian. I wish there were more people out there like yourself. May god bless you and your family.

  244. Wow! You have a lot of responses! As a Mom of 3 boys and 1 girl. It is an everyday conversation in our house, how we all should be respectful and value others for who they are not what they wear or don’t wear. And for our daughter, in particular, it is an everyday challenge to navigate expressing who she is, without crossing the very ambiguous lines of what is respectable and what is considered desperate. I want my daughter to enjoy who she is, but that does force me to accept the fact the she does want to also wear make-up and wear heels and find cute tops. She is not one to expose herself. As compared to her brothers who find cargo shorts, converse and funny t-shirts to be just fine.
    But, as a Mom and Dad with very strong urges to send her to a convent on a planet of only nuns, its hard to accept that a girl/woman (regardless of how she dresses or presents herself) is often portrayed as a sex symbol before individual, human, leader, intelligent, or as someone of value.
    It doesn’t even matter that my daughter (sons included) wear a uniform to school. Girls are still objectified, differently from boys.
    And it is few and far between to find others (adults in particular) that will encourage a female in the same manner as a male.

  245. Thanks for writing this article.

    It is the law in Australia that if you take a “sexy” photograph of yourself and post it on the internet or text it to a friend, you can be charged with transmitting child pornography even if the child in the photograph is yourself.

    Teenagers don’t understand that what they are doing is illegal, and that the photos, once posted, are online forever.

    One more thing to teach them about, I suppose.
    Peace.

  246. I cannot believe that you people are making such a big deal out of her son’s wearing swim trunks!! If seeing those photos made you at all uncomfortable, then that is a little creepy on your part. When I looked at those photos, do you want to know what I saw? I saw siblings on a beach having fun on vacation. Half naked??? Are you serious? These boys are wearing perfectly acceptable swimming attire to the beach and they were not posing in a sexual manner. If what you grown adults see is half naked men, and you get uncomfortable because you automatically think about sex, then I think you are the problem.

    What she was referring to in her post is the young girls who post photos in their bedrooms in nothing but a towel or skimpy pj’s and no bra and are clearly trying to look sexual. Do not act like you have no idea what she is talking about. Young girls on the beach in a bikini is natural and acceptable, and that is not what she was referring to. So let’s not make this something it isn’t. There is a huge difference in boys at the beach in trunks, and girls in their bedrooms wearing nothing but a towel and pouting their lips in a seductive way. Making muscles and funny faces is NOT the same thing.

    I am very disturbed by the adults who were uncomfortable with these pictures. It is very odd that people do not see the difference in what she was referring to and the pics of her kids. It would only be a double standard if she had posted pics of her son’s lying on their beds in nothing but a towel making a seductive facial expression.

  247. I agree with all the written points in your post. I try to point out to the teen girls at church things like this all thr time.
    BUT–why the double standard?? You don’t want your boys viewing pics of girls that are immodest. Despite what people think, girls can be turned ok visually too. “Magic Mike” didn’t do so well in theaters for its great plot and intellectual stimulation! It’s because he looks good topless. And so, with this thought about keeping the minds of our children clear, why would you post images of your sons topless? Because girls are looking at them. And they aren’t saying “I bet he’s a gentleman.” or “I bet he’s a really smart guy.” . They are saying “Oh!!! He’s HOT!”

  248. P.S. After reading several comments discussing this same issue (about this particular selection of images for your post), I want to add that although I agree that there is a difference between a sexy selfie and pictures of a family outing at the beach, THIS WAS NOT A BLOG POST ABOUT YOUR DAY AT THE BEACH.

    This was a post particularly meant to encourage young girls to be more mindful about what they’re putting out there, and do be modest in every way. The pictures that were chosen should be meant to illustrate this message (as would be the case in any publication), which is why it’s so terribly ironic that you chose these particular images of your young boys half naked.

    If this was a post about your day at the beach, I would not take issue with these images. But since this is a message very specifically targeting young girls (it starts out “Dear Girls”), then it is not a stretch to say that these very specific pictures were also meant for your young readers. You could not have picked more ironic (and more inappropriate) images.

    I saw several comments here from young women who confessed that they’d paused over those pictures of your sons, and I’m a little disappointed that the author of such a strong message didn’t feel it would be best to honor those (and future) young readers by doing a quick swap. Obviously, you’ve read every comment since they’re being moderated, and I’m absolutely baffled that this is something that you haven’t already done.

  249. Good grief people – And especially Kevin! We all know the kind of pictures this women is talking about about.

    Before meeting my wife on Eharmony, I had tried several dating sites; without asking for it, numerous women would email me these types of pics. Finally I wrote in my profile to please only send pictures that I can show my boys ( ages 7 and 8 ) at the time. The pictures of this woman’s boys at the beach are nothing like the pictures she is talking about, and it’s perfect that she did show her boys at the beach in their shorts – along with her young DAUGHTER also in a bathing suit, because it illustrates the difference. If you disagree with her – fine. But but don’t try to pretend that the two types of pictures are the same thing, which has nothing to do with whether it’s male or female. It’s the intent we are talking about.

  250. What I find hypocritical about this post is the fact that the photos you have of your boys show them “scantily clad” as well. Modesty goes BOTH ways. If girls have to keep their shirts on, boys should do the same.

  251. As a mother of 6 children (4 boys and 2 girls) I APPLAUD you my dear! And I am NOT the popular blogger either because I called out 50 Shades of Grey as being porn for women. LOL Let me tell you, as a NOT very popular Christian wife and mother, people will pick you apart. People will read into it what they will. When it all comes down to though: did you tell the truth? (YES!) Was it Biblical? (YES!) So, let the naysayers do what they want. This is NOT their family, this is YOURS. You are raising wonderful children! In the end, YOU will be proud, and so will Christ. Thank you for this post that has now gone viral all over Facebook! LOL I shared it because I want my Youth girls at church to read it too! We need to make a CHANGE in our morally corrupt culture, and YOU nailed it right on the head! THANK YOU!

  252. I am laughing as I read a lot of these comments! I have 3 boys of my own and I pray we raise them to know and love Jesus and others. Sex is so everywhere that its a scary thing for parents trying to raise godly children. I love your article. I get your point and I’m sorry people don’t give more grace when your intentions and bottom line is a positive message. Stay strong to your values, there are a lot of people off track out there ;)

  253. I’m less concerned with the hipocracy of having your boys half naked than I am of you using your religion as a back drop for being so self righteous and judgmental of others. Apparently you are a perfect mother with perfect children so it is perfectly alright for you to literally sit in judgment (in front of your children no less) on others and their wayward ways. If faith means behaving the way you have then I would rather have none.

  254. Coming from a mom of 3 boys myself – this was fantastic! I blessed to have 1 daughter and we have these conversations with both. I work with teenage girls and they need to hear this, they need to know they are beautiful and loved for who they are not what they look like. I agree whole heatedly that as parents it’s our job to help protect our kids – boys and girls. This type of post always stirs up those who just like to complain or point fingers. To suggest a boy in a swim suit is the same as girls showing their boobs is ridiculous! God made men to be stimulated visually and as women we should do what we can to help them and to protect our modesty. Great job!!

  255. Wow! I sometimes think people critique simply for the chance to be critical. I understand Mrs. Hall’s views on provocative photos of young girls being posted on social media sites. I have a 13 year old daughter, I see A LOT of these types of posts. Unfortunately, I don’t think some of these girls even realize their posts are sexual, the pouty lips, hands on hips poses so popular are just that, popular. They are emulating their friends. Does it make it ok? No, but it is what it is, and I think you can look at a picture of a group of girls at a slumber party being silly in their pj’s versus a single poser in her underwear & know where the intent lies. In the same manner, I think the pictures of her family (which include her daughter) are simple Summertime fun pictures. The same types of photos we have of our children in frames and on our walls…smiling sweet, pink cheeks and tan shoulders frolicking on white sands are a childhood classic. Are they sexually suggestive? In no way, shape or form. It’s a group of siblings being silly on a sunny Summer day, plain & simple, and of course, they are wearing swimsuits, because that is what people wear to the beach. If they were not included with this particular article & it’s subject matter, I bet most of you wouldn’t have thought twice about it
    .
    I find it a little scary that women are actually mentioning not being able to look at the pictures…really? Maybe those women need to look into their own hearts and where their own morals are if they can honestly say they see these photos as sexual. Only in the first photo can you see her son’s faces, the second is mostly of a child’s side & back. Again, this goes to our country’s nature to be overly critical of everyone who’s views don’t perfectly mesh with our own.

    Should young girls be ashamed of their bodies? Absolutely not! Should they, at 12 & 13 years old be posing in deliberately sexualized photos and posting them for God only know’s who to see….absolutely not!! Should she be teaching her sons to view women as more than sexual beings, absolutely! However, if for her, part of that is limiting the types of images they are exposed to on social media, then that is her parental right. The reality is, that we can try as much as we want to keep our children’s innocence intact for as long as possible, but in a society that thrives on hypersexualization, what we really need to be concerned with is how our children react to that sexualization. Will my daughter see inappropriate images at a young age? Almost certainly, Which is why it is important to explain to her what roles those images should play in her life. She knows what I expect from her, what God expects from her, and she knows where true value lies. She know the qualities she needs to posess to stand apart from the throng of attention seeking young women who posts these types of photos. Do I think she will ever falter? It’s highly likely, she is only 13. She knows I may be disappointed, but I will always love her. The true lesson is not what we can teach other’s children, it’s what we teach our own. .

  256. First of all, I think you write well and I think you give a lot of thought to your posts, and I greatly respect that. You are probably a really good Christian, mother and wife. I don’t discount any of that before adding my opinion onto your very-commented-upon internet wall.

    I was raised as an evangelical Christian, and the type of things you’re writing about in this post remind me of both the important lessons I learned as an adolescent raised with a rigid (and effective) moral compass, and also the reasons why I eventually (in my twenties) decided I no longer found comfort or constructive direction from my faith.
    – What you are saying to women is true: Young girls *should and NEED to be* dissuaded from presenting themselves as sexual objects. I remember the pain of growing up and wishing that, above all else, I’d be pretty. I would have traded anything (intelligence, drive, etc) for a very fleeting appearance.
    – I take issue with the idea that you are telling these young girls that it’s their responsibility to not lead men astray: I may be a bit reductive here, but the net of what I’m getting from your post (and again, most of my Christian upbringing) is that it’s the WOMAN’S responsibility to protect men from their impure, manly desires. I understand (as much as possible, while not being a mother, and I give you INFINITELY more credit because you are a mother) that wanting to protect your sons from any outside force is incredibly valid. That being said, I don’t think a 15-year-old girl understands what they’re doing when they post a sexual(ish) photo online. Telling these young women that they are capable of stopping men from their sexual fantasies is also opening them up to the idea that they could possibly be the instigators of sexual activity without their intending to do so. When it comes down to it, women being “responsible” for male’s libido could end with women feeling responsible for crimes against them. I know that’s not what you’re meaning to say, but I think it’s a flaw in the logic of conservative Christianity.
    – Additionally, the idea that “I know you’re trying to be sexy, but really you should be smart” is backwards. It assumes that women want to be sexy, it half-a#%dley says that there’s an ok alternative. I don’t know what it will take to make women know that they should be smart. I don’t think it’s Christianity’s issue, but if you guys figure it out before secular people, I can guarantee you that we will respect the heck out of you.

    Again, I appreciate the fact that you’re willing to write about your life, your family and your opinions. I think the people who have commented about the photo of your sons are those who don’t understand how to decipher what they’re feeling (which I think might be “why women, not men?”), despite the fact that they may have legitimate feelings/opinions, because I think your photo of your sons is adorable.

    Thanks for writing, I hope you have a great rest of the summer,
    T

  257. Kim – please don’t be discouraged by negative posts! You are a mom sharing what you are teaching your boys. I just really don’t want you to beat up on yourself – your post was very well written – seriously, great advice :)

  258. Wow! I’m in shock that every one has their panties in a wad about a bunch of boys in swim shorts. No shirt! Gasp! I can’t believe people think that’s sexually inappropriate. Just because they are attractive doesn’t mean they are being inappropriate. Mrs Hall never once says a girl isn’t allowed to post a attractive picture of herself. Just not sexually alluring. Man, you people are freaking nuts. Get a grip.

  259. First off, the pictures are of a healthy group of boys (and girl) in bathing suits at the beach. There is nothing wrong with dressing appropriately for the environment. I think she is talking more about the young girls hiding in their bedrooms taking half naked photos of themselves purposely to get attention from boys. I have seen many a picture like this as I have a 17 year old son. They are not normal pictures taken by friends or family. They are selfies that are for the most part inappropriately sexual for their age. Fantastic article and so very true. My son has been lucky enough to find a smart, pretty and very classy young lady and I hope that when your boys get to that point they find one too!!

  260. Thank you for putting this so elegantly. I think there are several teenage girls that can benefit from your post. Fortunately, I have one of those teenage girls that you speak of that you’d like your boys to one day meet. She is sweet and innocent, and for that reason I would not let her see the pictures of your boys. This is a two way street. The pictures of your boys shirtless, posing, and flexing muscles on the beach is just as inappropriate as the girls bedroom photos. Based on those photos and your no second chance policy I would have to boot your boys off our on-line island. You really should think before you post!

  261. Though I agree with the general request that people be more mindful of the things they share on the internet, I find this blog post to be really offensive. The one-mess-up-then-you’re-done rule is disappointing. There are gray areas, and even the most responsible girls mess up at times. Do we teach our sons to judge them as a whole because of those times? No. We teach our sons to look away from those pictures and to love those people who messed up with the love of Christ. Instead of praying that my son finds a woman with a life clean of mistakes, I pray he finds one who has grown from her failures. I pray he loves her, and everyone else for that matter, with a love that forgives.

  262. You have plenty of replies about the pictures of your boys, etc. I applaud you, however, for doing your best with your boys. Boys need mom’s in their corner to teach them what a wife will be like and possibly an eventual mother to their children. Boys need a woman to show them what a woman should be. I see you working on that, Mom. Great job. Dont fret too much about the other posts. They may make some valid points, and I am sure they mean no harm. Keep up the good work.
    “The value of a mother is that she has done her very best, not that she has been perfect.” ~Zoie

  263. My nine-year-old son is embarrassed by men and sometimes boys in our neighborhood who go shirtless. He thinks men should wear shirts. He of course is not embarrassed at the beach not to wear one. It’s the beach. But it’s all about context. He also is quite embarrassed by bikinis. He’d rather not see so much.

    I have two teen girls, however, and I do think context is key. So please, before you judge their facebook picture, try to think of it in context and with their intent. Perhaps they are too young to be judged so harshly, but rather they could be talked to if you indeed are able to talk to their parents. I assume you meant no irony with the beach pictures, but it IS a little weird. (At first, I honestly thought this blog post was a joke because of them).

  264. The message is a beautiful one, and I think that truly caring, Godly people should be a lot more gracious and a lot more loving in their choice of words (and manner of using those words) than some of the ones posted here. Morality and modesty are not gender specific responsibilities, and lust is not a gender specific sin. We are all here, men and women, to compliment each other, and help each other get to heaven. We cannot do that if we aid in the lust of another, or if we disrespect ourselves and others, or if we speak callously to one another. I think this writer has now seen what others have seen, and she understands, that – while she posted with beautiful intention – the pictures don’t necessarily fit the tone of the message. She is also right though – those photos were not taken in a sexual manner by the young men themselves in an attempt to come off sexy, or hot, or cute, or whatever term people try to present when they take the type of selfies mentioned. These were family photos taken by the family when the family was obviously enjoying time together. I would venture to say that the vast majority of young boys wear no shirt at the pool or beach, and as long as I am not being presented with a view of things that ought be covered by his swimsuit, I normally don’t even notice whether a man or boy is wearing a shirt at the pool or beach. If I were seeing selfies of a young boy in his bedroom, the bathroom or some non-public place, in his boxers or a towel, and obviously taken by himself….. that would be a totally different story – but that is not what was posted here. I commend her for taking a stand on a very important issue. Should she mention the responsibility of young boys? Sure…. but perhaps that is another post for another day. I am fairly confident that if this very caring, loving mother saw inappropriate photos on the walls of her sons’ male friends, those friends will be blocked too. I just have that feeling about her – and I have never met her. As for condemning the writer…. I think we’ve all got logs in our own eyes, and don’t need to be consumed with worry about a splinter in the eye of our neighbor. I read something similar to that somewhere…….

  265. YES you have made some good points. As a mom of 4 girls I too along with my husband will screen their facebooks accounts oneoy shiftless! day….when they are old enough to have them. However like other readers I was caught back by your photo choice. There. Of course is nothing wrong with swimsuits however would it be different if I wrote this article and the main picture I used was with my 4 girls in swimsuits on the beach? To think high school girls are not visual is ignorant. When I was in high school you bet I liked seeing that cute boys shirtless. And…what is up with boys wearing their shorts so low at or below their hip bones. What happened to at the waist. You might take a double take of your boys shorts in the front laying across the sand. Maybe I am being critical…but…I also am a mom of 4 girls…soon to be teenagers

  266. Keep praying, Momma! I KNOW God will answer your prayer for your boys, because He certainly answered mine! He sent a beautiful godly woman into our crazy family nd she has absolutely stolen our hearts! I now have two precious grandboys, with another on the way (I think this one is a girl). I am truly blessed with my special daughter-in-love!! Good job with your boys! I am glad y’all are so involved as a family!! Way to go Mom!! :)

  267. I would just like to say.. I’m a 16 year old girl and I couldn’t agree more. In my opinion if you want a boy to respect you you have to respect yourself and posting half naked pictures is not the way to get respect. I would like to thanks you for this post and I hope that more teenage girls and boys read this and understand. (:

  268. I loved the post. I just wish you hadn’t chosen to post your boys in bathing suits. It goes both ways. I have one daughter and 4 sons. My boys wear rash guards. Why? Because uncovered boys are the same as uncovered girls. Something to think about. I know you weren’t trying to throw stones while living in a glass house. But for moms with girls that are trying to teach the same thing you are…there is a hypocritical message here. Not trying to offend, and maybe you will learn something from the comments, just like the things you are trying to teach the girls you wrote this too. Or you won’t. Either way, the principle was good, it just needs to be applied on all sides.

  269. I absolutely cannot believe some of these “parents” that say it’s not your job to monitor your childrens’ friends. That is exactly our job as parents. I think the ones saying the girls aren’t to blame for the way boys look at them are totally wrong. These young girls know exactly what they are doing and the message they are sending when they post these pictures. Instead of criticizing you for teaching your sons self respect and control, maybe they should try teaching their daughters the same. They keep defending these girls’ behavior like it’s not a big deal and they think it’s terrible to shame them for it. Maybe if more parents taught their daughters it is shameful to show so much of themselves, then they would reconsider. I want my daughter to marry someone whose mom taught them that behavior like that is wrong.

  270. The world needs more mother like you who care enough about their children’s integrity as well as the integrity of other people’s children. Love this post! You sound like a fantastic family. :)

  271. Ok, so the photo issue has been beat up. I won’t address that. You posted your own reply that maybe they were inappropriate in the context of your writing. You also admit you have made many mistakes “to many to count” then ask for forgiveness and continued support. While in your post you tell the girls if they make a bad decision or mistake it’s Instant ban! No “second chances” . How un-Christian of you! Even God “who gave his only begotten son….” God, the ultimate giver of second chances. If you believe in the word. So your hipocracy is self evident. As many have said, I understand the intent of your message. However you need to rethink not only your words but your views and condemnations.

  272. So many comments that were thought-provoking on here — regardless of whether you agree with any of them, please know that you launched a conversation that helps others clarify their own values.

    In my case, while I have definitely taught my now-teenage girls that it’s not necessary to “sell the packaging when you’ve got the goods” and would agree with you that I am saddened by the over-exposure and continued objectification of girls in today’s culture (on TV, in social media, in advertising and in real life).

    Separately, I saw nothing wrong with the photos you posted of your boys — they were clearly not sexualized nor do I believe they were over-exposed. As others have posted, those were photos you could put in a family album or share with your grandparents.

    The real thing I got from reading your post and the many comments is that we, as a society, need to stop blaming girls for seeking attention as objects when they are only responding to and mirroring society around them. Based on the comments, it seems like a lot of boys are doing the same thing and rather than reducing the objectification of girls, we are now seeing boys as objects. I don’t know the answer, but I don’t think it lies in judging the kids themselves.

  273. Oh my stars and butter- what a lot of extreme responses! Your post is showing in my Facebook news feed, or else I’d never have found your post. First off, as a mom to a young son, I appreciate your post on many levels. I tend to think, though, that most of us might have taken the sorts of photos you were talking about during our own adolescences if we’d come of age with the technologies that these girls have. I’m not really making a defined point, here; I’m a little conflicted about this myself. I don’t hope that my son waits until marriage to be intimate with someone; I rather hope he doesn’t, having done that myself with abysmal success. I hope he ends up marrying someone not for sexuality but for personality, and I think that’s a conundrum of conservative Christianity. I hope he’s experimented. I hope he knows what he likes and what he doesn’t before he says ‘I do’ so that later he doesn’t have to say ‘I don’t, after all’ like I did. That being said… I’d like it very much if more girls showed less on the interwebs – those photos can be deleted on your end, but they can also follow you for your entire lives. (P.S. I don’t think the photo of your kids is by any means inappropriate or at all the sort of thing you’re talking about. It’s apparently just a touchy subject.)

  274. I agree whole-heartedly and I do see a difference for boys and girls because boys and girls see each other differently.

    Of course if the boy was posting “suggestive” pictures, that is different and here is a line where men and women may differ in opinions.

    In my opinion, any woman or girl will read less into a boy’s pose than a man or boy to a woman or girls. I believe, with few exceptions, this is the way we are hard-wired.

    Good perspectives on your part!

  275. I didn’t read all the way through the postings because the post by Kyle David Greenberg said exactly what I was thinking. “Through stones at the woman; it’s HER fault.” But Jesus saw it differently. I understand where, as a mom, you are coming from. But I just don’t feel right about your philosophy. It’s obviously YOUR family, and YOUR choices here; but you posted this publicly as a message to all, so I feel I need to back up another view. Please seriously consider what Kyle said.

  276. I absolutely love this post. I wish other girls my age or just in general would know common sense like this. I really like your idea. I think I will do that with the guys and girls on my Facebook.

  277. I just loved your post. Thank you for a heartfelt and very well centered expression for our young boys and girls. As for the photos of your boys – don’t sweat it. Honestly. Your whole point was about context. These are public photos shot in public in decent beach wear. I found your photos interesting to stimulate dialog. I don’t think it undermines your message at all. I think instead it UNDERLINES the line. Yes, you can look great and buff and family friendly. But you should not post a photo online that you would be ashamed for your mother or your grandmother or their friends to see. Shame on the internet lives on and on and on.

  278. I loved it! Don’t listen to the nay-Sayers! Your boys are not trying to be sexy but fun and the muscle picture included your daughter! You seem to but a lot of thought into the boys upbringing as well and are asking that other mothers consider these things with their daughters.I would say that a girl in a swim suit at the beach in with the family would also be better than in her room on the bed. It is different not because of the clothes but the attitude behind the clothes! These boys are not trying to be cool making peace signs with backwards hats in their room on their bed! I have a mommy blog as well and I love this article! The perspective i saw was your trying to raise Godly men and are-praying over your boys and hoping the find Godly women out there :)

  279. I feel like you posted those pictures of your boys to make sure the girls in towels and pajamas knew what they were missing out on. As if your intent was to brag about your good parenting and show off your attractive family instead of lovingly letting girls know what kind of friends you’d like for your boys. You can justify all you want about beach vs. bedroom, but you know girls must see your boys as sexy in those photos and you purposefully chose them. I have never responded to a blog post before, but the hypocrisy in this one compelled me to say something.

  280. Very well said, and I agree with you 100%. However, your commenters do have a point. Handsome young men on the beach flexing in their swim trunks might also be misconstrued as sending the wrong message. I do get your point, though, and wish we could teach modesty to all of our teens, both boys and girls. They are both guilty at times.

  281. He used you to encourage mommies of little boys tonight, mommies who will be where you are soon. If anyone else had read the last 6 months of your posts and learned your heart and love for The Lord and your family, I should hope they would have responded differently. Keep writing, I will be reading.

  282. I fully agree with your post, pictures and all your words! Please, don’t listen to those who want to rain on your parade by saying that it goes both ways about the scantily-clad girls and your boys being shirtless. Your boys are at the beach for goodness sake! Their swim shorts are not scantily-clad, they are not revealing in the least bit, and as far as your sons being shirtless, that is the way males have always dressed and will continue to dress for the swimming pool and the beach. There is nothing wrong with that, and they know it. It is not the same as with the girls, and it never will be (not in regards to the way we dress). I think some of your readers and repliers are offended at what they read here because they know they have allowed their teen girls to purchase and therefore wear inappropriate clothes, failed to teach their daughters appropriate dress and behavior around males whether in pictures or in person, and they just did not like it one bit. You rebuked and instructed them in the nicest way possible. Well, all I have to say is, good for you, and hopefully, they will forgive you for offending them! Your parenting style is to be commended! Thank you very much for taking the time to post everything you did in this regard!

  283. The gist of this message should not be misconstrued. These three photographs are of family time together, spent over the last hot days of summer. The kids are wearing what most everyone wears at the beach. The boys are fooling around, being brothers to their younger sister on a public beach. And, beach-goers wear swimsuits. All of the kids look normal and are dressed in modest bathing attire. Mrs. Hall states her viewpoints and what many other people should be saying. “Hey young girls … get the cameras out of the bedroom. Stop yourself wearing towels, or hardly nothing at all and posing seductively. Because any old lecherous readers can see and ogle you.”

    Today our young people are inundated with promiscuity and sex. It sells. That is the plain and simple fact of the matter. Mrs. Hall decided to explain the situation, while offering her morale compass. It’s a little hard to hear if you are one of the girls silly enough to do snaps and posts. A wake-up call is healthy. like a glass of ice-cold water over your head. It gives kids pause to quit acting in a manner that could negatively impact their high school years, of taking wrong turns and making poor decisions. Kids need guidance.

    When I was a teenager, whatever clothes I tried on or posed wearing before the mirror, in the privacy of my bedroom, was private … for no one other than myself. Oh sure, I wanted to be grown up, but I was brought up to be a lady, to show decorum and restraint. These are good and valuable traits.

    Hopefully, the sting is removed from Mrs. Hall’s words, by the fact that she is trying to be decent about setting an example by listing the reasons her daughter was perplexed and a bit confused. The last picture (one of her son looking out to sea) might remind us of summer days we also wondered and dreamed about true love. I do not see how the photographs on the beach, versus the ones of girls in their bedrooms can even compete! The boys are not posing with a come-hither look in their eyes, nor are they wearing transparent clothing. This is social media. Once it is in cyber space it is always there. It cannot be deleted … only temporarily removed. Persons who commented negatively about this post was comparing apples to oranges. A little common sense goes a long way here.

    I shall share this on my pages to encourage young people to think first and curb their impulses. Rein it in kids … because down the road, you’ll be ever so glad that you did. Isn’t it time young people were encouraged to make good wholesome choices in a world, that has gone a bit off-kilter?

  284. I happen to agree with the AUTHOR! (Gasp) I have deleted/blocked girls and guys from both my sons’ and my daughters’ FB accounts for just this reason. Your pictures of your boys and family are great. If anyone thinks they are sexual or inappropriate, they have the problem. The Bible tells girls specifically that they should guard the hearts of men by their modesty in dress and behavior. Even God realized that men have a problem in this area. Do women and girls also? Most definitely, and I would not allow my boys to take provocative picture in a towel either. If you wouldn’t show it to your mother/father/preacher, it doesn’t need to be seen by anyone! This mother is right on, and not giving a double-standard by any stretch of the imagination. Swimsuit pictures, while not a favorite of mine typically (the shorts these boys are wearing are very modest), I don’t allow bikini shots either. My girls don’t wear them at all (and they choose not to, for themselves) and I don’t believe that girls should be showing off more in a swimsuit than they would show in their underwear, and they definitely wouldn’t be running around in public in their underwear. (I hope) the Bible is pretty clear on the boundaries of dress and behavior, and as a parent it’s a pretty good guideline. It’s a start, but their heart also needs to be steered toward The Lord, and with images assaulting them at every turn, I don’t feel it’s wrong to protect them from what I can. It’s my job, and outlined very clearly by God. Nobody is telling anyone they should be ashamed of their bodies, but that they should respect themselves enough to not show it off just to gain the attention of men. If they respect themselves, then their chances of meeting a man who also respects them are much better. We do teach our “men” to respect women, but you can’t respect someone who actively shows you they don’t deserve respect, by disrespecting themselves.

  285. Wow, it amazes me how many people are criticizing this post because of the picture of young men in extremely modest swim trunks on the beach with their little sister. I find this post inspiring and it helps motivate me to raise my boys similarly. I have seen pictures like the ones she describes and I know how it makes me feel as an adult, I can just imagine what a teenage boy with raging hormones that he hasn’t yet learned to control is feeling. Lets face it folks, she is right, and those of you who are criticizing this blog probably need to get on Facebook and delete some of the selfies of yourselves.

  286. I completely agree with Mrs Hall. I am a daughter of a 16 year old and I truly believe there is a huge difference between the premise of a girl or even a boy dressed in pajamas in their “personal” space such as a bedroom in a provocative manner versus family fun at the beach.

    With that said, are we saying that you all think that boys and girls in bathing suits at the beach or even at the community pool is wrong? I think some of you have missed the point completely. I mean its not like her boys were wearing speedos or g-stings. At some point it would be nice if parents would stand up for each other instead of nit pick, criticize and blow honest meaning way out proportion. One mom trying to make a difference for her family…….thats it people. That is way more than most parents do for their kids nowadays. Why do you have to turn it into something ugly?

  287. I enjoyed your article very much. I did pause for a second at your picture choices. They are completely innocent choices and I do not think the intent was sexual in any way….. However… What you may see as innocent another may see as otherwise. My point here is that ALL of us should be careful of the pictures we post. I recently posted to my FB page a couple pictures of my 2 year old. The point of the pictures was that she had given herself a hair cut. They were before and afters. After I posted I realized in my excitement to share this lovely hair cut I posted “nude” looking photos. She is 2. There is nothing sexual about a 2 year old. She had on a diaper. But she was topless and ANYONE could have seen the pics. ANYONE. I hope I do not have to spell it out…. I also have a male cousin that posted selfies of his abs with a friend. I found it a little gross and told him so. He wasn’t thinking about WHO would see his pic and HOW they would react. Cover up people, think before you post, and share modest pics and we would not be having to have these discussions!!! There are sickos out there who take innocent family photos and turn them into something else.

  288. Oh Kim, this is an amazing blog post. I never for a moment thought there was any problem with the pictures. I’m so sorry that you’ve gotten such rotten responses. Good bless you and your sweet family. I’m praying for you tonight. Thank you for sharing a piece of your life today! You are absolutely spot on!

  289. Wow, I don’t get the comments about the double standard. I am a girl, didn’t even notice. They’re on a public beach. Dozens of people saw them and probably didn’t think twice. That’s normal in our society. I am also not visually stimulated the same way men are said to be. Maybe it’s different for other girls. Anyways, I think everyone is overreacting. AND the words that make up the article are GREAT!

  290. Ah, you have to love a hot topic!

    I applaud your stance and truly do believe it is your obligation and right to parent your children as you would like as long as it is not abusive or neglectful and obviously it is not. Personally, it’s obvious you want all the right things for your young sons and for young girls too.

    I realize you have a young daughter and so realize you will eventually struggle with being a parent to a young woman. A young woman who is fraught between wanting desperately to be loved for who she is yet recognizing that every time she looks out at the world around her she is surrounded by images of who and what she is supposed to be. We can shelter and love these young women but eventually they will face the world. Perhaps with such a great role model and support system she will be less vulnerable to what surrounds her.

    I once thought that would be how it would be for my now sixteen year old daughter too, and like you, I reiterated from day one the importance of who we are and how we carry ourselves vs. making silly choices or desperate attempts for attention that will have consequences. I was also very forgiving of silly choices now and then because we do all make them. I still make them!

    I have learned that a young woman today, like any day you choose in history, will want to be known for her sincere smile, intelligence, and great capacity for empathy (or whatever other great personality traits she has), but she will also want to be seen.

    An easy way to be seen is to give the world what it wants or at least the message we’re allowing the world to tell our young woman that it wants from them. She will be stuck between wanting to accept the new found attention her breasts get and perplexed that her long, thin legs could ever elicit anything besides a win on the high school track team. She will be stuck between wondering if she will ever add up physically because each time she looks around she may be told by others, quite accidentally, she doesn’t.

    She’ll be curious and confused and try to navigate the world the best she can.

    I understand that pouty lip shots taken in a closet are obvious screams for attention but so is the wearing of high heels to eighth grade graduation. You wouldn’t believe how many kids in my daughters graduating class did. I wouldn’t let her. I didn’t believe what she was saying “all the girls are wearing them!”

    They were.

    I wish my daughter was not shunned but accepted for her differences. I wish her strong and amazing attributes were celebrated as much, if not more, as her young woman’s body. I wish her friends didn’t talk behind her back as much as they smile to her face and she had a bad friend decoder so she could reject them before they hurt her. In the future, I wish that after going to college, she could rely on receiving equal pay for equal work in any field she chose and didn’t have to worry about sexual harassment or if her top button accidentally comes undone in a meeting that it will become the sole memory of that meeting.

    So my daughter has never posted a picture that is pouty in a bathroom towel in a closet because I’d absolutely take away her Facebook privileges and regularly check her page, but my daughter struggles in a world that continually fails to see her for who she is and prefers to focus on what she’s wearing instead. Whether it covers her up or reveals her figure, it is always what people notice.

    At sixteen, you’d think a child who is so great and has the support and guidance of a family who loves her, would never struggle with this.

    So as a parent I wish we addressed what is the root of those pictures rather than simply chastised the young ladies posting them.

    P.S. Love the photo of your family and think it vibes love. It doesn’t take away from your message one bit for me. I just wanted to share a perspective of a Mom of a teen daughter who struggles with what you saw on Facebook yourself. These teens struggle whether they dare to take that picture in a moment where they crave attention or not. We need to send clearer, better messages and begin to value them more for who they are rather than what they look like. I fully recognize that is the exact message you’re trying to send and it’s appreciated by this teen Mom.

  291. Wow. I’m sure you mean well but you come across as quite self righteous. Sometimes we spend so much time judging others we forget to examine our own actions. Although there are “no second chances” in your home , I hope your readers will allow you a second chance to examine this double standard.

  292. I understand that you don’t find the picture of your boys to be sexual in nature…of course…you are their mom. I can tell you that there are plenty of teenage girls that would disagree with you. Great message in text, but when you threw the pictures in there, it became a mixed message. I have 2 boys and 2 girls…so I am coming from both angles here.

  293. GREAT post! I have two boys (17 & 7) and two girls (11 & 13), and I agree with you 100%. I am a fully heterosexual, married woman, and I’ve seen sexy-man pics. These are NOT sexy-man pics! (Your guys are perfectly attractive, but they are NOT behaving alluringly nor provocatively in these pics.) And yes, there are fun, girls-in-swimsuits-on-the-beach pics that are not purposely sexy nor alluring, where any attractiveness is purely innocent and beautiful. Let’s quit being rediculous and acknowledge the difference, people! For those of you posting as if there’s no difference, none of us are buying that youre THAT clueless. Come on!!!

  294. The heart is what truly matters, and some of us, male and female, struggle with different areas of our thought more than other areas. However, just for some food-for-thought, I wanted to share an eye-opening lecture on what would seem to be something just on bikinis by Jessica Ray. Pay attention midway through to the bit about the studies at around 4:20 of the clip about some studies done at Princeton about what the site of immodestly-dress females do the male brain. (And ladies, I know that we can be stimulated by and tempted by the sight of attractive males, too…I’m certainly not ruling that point out, since that would be very two-faced indeed, but I do want us to recognize that our brains are NOT hardwired the same as males’ brains are, and have a large responsibility to learn to reveal our character and integrity rather than expose our physical exteriors). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJVHRJbgLz8

  295. Oh come now, girls are just as drawn to lust by seeing a shirtless man. I was raised around Hollister and Abercrombie and was just as flabbergasted as the next person as to how a half naked man sells clothes. Sex sells. Sex sells to women. Women f-ing love those stores. Women lust as well. There’s your logic road map. Keep fighting the good fight, Mrs. Hall, but fight it for both genders, I beg you. Your young woman needs that. I needed that.

  296. “To avoid criticism, say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.” -Aristotle. I read your response to the many replies earlier, and kudos to you for giving a response! I have to wonder if you are even reading the replies now since you are getting so many, but I just wanted to encourage you by saying that I bet the reason you are getting so many replies is because this was a very good post that is obviously being shared a lot, most likely because many people agreed with it and appreciated the wisdom you had to share. So other people with the world’s point of view are now seeing it too. We know that when there is something powerful and positive being done, other forces will always be at work to try to destroy, distract, or deny the truth. There was definitely a point to heed and pray about with what many had to say about your pictures, though they are clearly not apples to apples the same kind of pictures you were referring. But yes, your pictures could pose a definite temptation for girls. How far do we go to avoid causing a brother to stumble? That’s a tough question, but I think it’s a question that is raised by this post and its responses. Thank you for the post because both the point you made and the point others made have brought my attention to something I definitely need to pray about.

  297. Hhhmmm, not sure how I feel about this. Like others have said, if you’re coming down hard on teenage girls for being provocative in their Facebook pictures, why are all yoour pictures of her sons shirtless? Kind of a double standard. And yes, young girls should respect themselves, but Christian young men should be taught to respect young women, regardless of whether or not they respect themselves. That’s what Jesus did in John 8 with the woman caught in adultery, in John 4 with the woman at the well. Neither of those women were respecting themselves, and yet Jesus treated them with the utmost respect, and that changed their lives. He didn’t demand that they start respecting themselves before he would treat them with respect, and he didn’t refuse to interact with them because of their provocative lifestyles. Not only that, but teaching young men that thinking lustfully is not their fault, it’s the women’s fault for being provocative, goes completely against what the Bible teaches. I’m not saying girls shouldn’t be careful about what they post, especially Christian girls, but I think what you’re saying puts too much responsibility on young women, and takes away the God-given responsibility from men to keep their thoughts pure and respect women. I think it’s degrading to Christian men as well, to treat them like they’re weak and powerless in the face of a woman without a bra on. We’re made in God’s image, and filled with his spirit. They CAN handle it, they can be strong and honorable, and good, regardless of what’s shoved in their faces. That’s what my Bible says, that’s what I believe, and I think that’s what Christian families should be teaching their sons.
    As a Christian woman, I’m tired of men who think they’re weak and powerless. Because they aren’t, or at least they don’t have to be. Teach your sons to be strong, honorable men of God, regardless of what’s going on around them, the world needs more of those.

  298. Also, the girls who are posing provocatively are doing so with the INTENT of sexually arousing young men. In those cases, they ARE at least partially responsible for the thoughts that come up in guys’ minds. If they didn’t want to arouse them, they wouldn’t pose provocatively and post those photos publicly.

  299. Dear Sister in Christ,
    Please do not be wearied and burdened by the influx of comments from strangers who do not know your heart. I can tell you love your family, and so many of these posts treat this as a blanket statement about responsibility and gender roles. It’s hard when you are suddenly thrust into the spotlight, and I apologize for the rudeness you’ve endured. I encourage you to switch off comments and rest in knowing that MANY of us get where you are coming from, and know the difference between beach day and bedroom posing.
    Keep the faith!

  300. To all of you who say it is a double standard: Is your daughter on the football team? No? Double standard. She has teenage sons and an eight year old daughter. Eight. She’s not lusting after boys yet, and thus the article is directed at an immediate problem: the sons’ purity. In five years, perhaps she will write another article. Now run along and delete every picture of yourself and your children in less than turtlenecks and coveralls. Because, you know, double standards…

  301. The most interesting thing about this post is the comments; specifically the ways in which commenters justify the double standard of modesty and responsibility for males and females. Boys don’t usually wear shirts while swimming and as such pictures of them shirtless at the beach are fine? Great. I can agree with that as long as we can also agree that since girls do not usually wear bras while sleeping, a braless photo of a girl in her bedroom is equally fine. Oh, it isn’t? Well, then yeah. There’s a problem.

    I agree that a parent should teach their sons not to linger over scantily clad females. I think that is a fantastic lesson to teach. But I do not agree with the way in which you appear to be teaching it. Because, here’s the thing, buying in to the boys are naturally going to objectify girls and as such girls must be more modest, absolves both parents and their sons of the responsibility to teach and learn the real lesson which is, treat women with respect and do not objectify them, no matter what they are wearing.

    I think that any parent who wants to raise honorable kids with a strong moral compass is starting from a good position. I simply question the nature of any moral compass that chooses to block girls rather teach boys how to deal interact with and respect them.

  302. I’m not as old as all of the women commenting on this blog post, in fact I’m only 15. But I must say, I agree with your post. I have both an Instagram and Twitter and I have to parents who monitor it and have family members following it. Now personally for me, I’m not sure where I stand with this whole argument about the pictures posted. I mean they’re on the beach, so of course they’d be in swim attire? But if a girl my age posted a picture of herself on the beach in a bathing suite, would you block her? Now me, I don’t post pictures like that because I’m just not very comfortable with it, but I would think it’s unfair for the boys to be able to post swim attire and the girls can’t. I mean a totally understand blocking them if it’s an ill-fitting bathing suite showing off too much cleavage or any at all. I’m personally a one piece person, but that’s way off subject. I hope you don’t think this is a negative comment, I just want to know your take on the whole posting swim wear picture? I loved your post and everything you had to say, it actually reminded me of my own parents teach me to behave. I’ll definitely be back for more!

  303. Love it.. So true. I have 4 sons, 3 of which are teenagers and I feel the same way!! I am trying to teach my boys to respects girls and themselves. Thanks for this. I do not feel there is a double standard here. Pictures of girls being provocative is NOT the same as boys (and young boys with their young sister) going to the beach and having fun. To separate things.

  304. Wow, I am really shocked by the response as well. I have little guys now and they are often without shirts in summertime on the beach and I see this continuing for their whole lives…when they are wearing rashguards it is more b/c of our pale/sensitive skin rather than an issue of modesty. If you notice in the first photo, they are all (including her daughter) making a strong pose. I did not find it odd in any way. I am sad that people have. I saw it as a fun family photo and in fact, they all seem to be being silly. Silly not provocative. Selfies taken in closets and bedrooms in poses that are sexual in nature are incredibly different from the first photo of ALL of her children (girl included)….hence the next point that she is obviously not anti-girl. I applaud and appreciate hearing the way she is raising her boys, raising 5 of my own. The fact that they talk about it all and come to a decision, again the fact that they TALK is wonderful. I actually thought the second photo was beautiful of her son. I take one yearly on the beach of my boys together and individually. They love the water, the sand, they are happy and playful there and just capturing their souls in those moments are so honest and pure as a mom.

    Also to those who again say a double standard. She did not say anything about not teaching her boys values, morals, and to be responsible for their thoughts and actions. She was merely, in my opinion, commenting on one aspect of how they try hard to keep their boys thoughts pure, while being bombarded in every direction in our culture. I am sure there are many other conversations they have aside from this particular one.

    Finally just stop being so critical. It is obvious she was trying to do something good with this article and the message (regardless of your stance on the photos) is a good one. There are worse things we can do than try to help our boys understand that they are in control of what they allow in their minds and lives. All it takes is a seed to be planted, ask the astounding numbers of men addicted to pornography.

  305. What a coincidental last name! I loved this post, and think it had a ton of great points.

    After reading the other comments, I decided I’d leave my own thoughts on their thoughts… Although your teenage boys are “half-naked” and attractive. I believe it only drew away from the post for the people who were looking to find fault in it.

    I am a single college girl who isn’t ashamed to confess that I have looked at guys in my classes and around town in a sexual manner. When surfing Facebook and looking up cute guys, it’s not the guys that are posed half naked that send out those vibes that say “I have sex with random girls.” It’s the guys that have the “bedroom eyes” or are posing at a million different clubs with different women. If you want to pose half-naked on a beach, go for it! As long as you’re not posing like you’re ready to take off the smidgen of clothing you have on, you don’t look like a whore. Girls can pose in slutty ways fully clothed… but so can guys.

    On the whole “not unseeing” thing: I have pictured attractive guys naked, and I have pictured guys I would never give a chance to naked because people today are wired to think sexually through television and online media. People don’t need slutty pictures to see their friends and people around them in a sexual manner. People are too curious not to picture what could be or what shouldn’t be. I’m completely with you on the millions of inappropriate selfies, though. Mostly because that girl in the photo may grow up to be ashamed of her past, and there’s no way to erase it online or in people’s minds. On Facebook, it will go into many more peoples’ eyes than that girl realizes.

    For all of the people who (amazingly) haven’t found any fault in my post yet, here’s something for you to hoot over: I’m not a christian, and I still have morals.

  306. I am the mother of 3 girls…the oldest a teenager, who is so modest, that sometimes I even tell her to lighten up. I look through the pictures of her “church friends” and am sickened by the pictures and videos of the girls in the pool, in their itsy bitsy bikinis, twerking. And then reading the comments by the boys like “da*n girl. sexy”. It seems that the only attention girls want from boys is the wrong kind of attention. And it’s unfortunate that most boys expect that from all girls and the ones who don’t post constant selfies are not worthy of following. We do not allow our daughter to even post selfies, unless it is approved by me. And I check all her social media accounts several times a day. It saddens me to think that too many parents are clueless about their kids social media use. Thank you so much for posting this, because I was starting to think I was all alone.

    P.S. I think I read one comment above and it was berating you for the picture you posted. Good gracious….Seriously?!?!

  307. I totally agree with what Mrs. Hall had to say. I teach teenage girls and boys and am raising a girl and boy of my own. I have seen those “girl” pictures to which Mrs. Hall refers…teenage girls often try to let themselves be perceived sexy- not only by what they wear, but how they pose. I read the whole article and applauded her in my heart for her message, never once thinking about her choice of photos on the beach. I did mentally note how cute her boys-(particular in the last photo where she posed with the blonde eyed-blue boy) were and how valiant she as mother was for striving to protect their ever so delicate purity in today’s world. Perhaps other photos would have been good choices…but perhaps these photos serve to show that teenagers can be themselves and still be modest in action and motive. I don’t count these photos as un-modest. They are not in speedos, they aren’t pointing to their crouches, and they are giving seductive looks. There is a big difference. It is about motive and about the heart. Sisters could pose for family pictures in a swimsuit on the beach in non-seductive ways…and I would consider that okay. I have pictures of myself on the beach in a swim suit on my social media…but I certainly wouldn’t pose in a white tank, bra-less in my bed. There is big difference. These boys aren’t being seductive and those commentators that point out that they are on the beach (in normal beach attire) are missing the point.

  308. There is nothing inappropriate about boys in swimsuits at the beach. If you’re a woman and don’t see the difference, feel free to do some yard work topless tomorrow. Where boys are concerned I can say that I didn’t grow up with brothers or close cousins. I didn’t know or understand boys until I became a mother, and even now they boggle my mind. Their thinking is so completely different from ours. From what I’ve observed of my sons and their friends, a boys view of his body, girls and girl’s bodies is radically different from a girl’s point of view. The woman who wrote this article received a lot of criticism, but I’m glad she posted it ’cause I think I understand. As a mother of three sons, I have spent many an anxious night worrying and praying about my sons, their future girlfriends and wives and the relationships they will have with these women. I want them to have reasonable and realistic expectations about their relationships with the opposite sex. I never, ever want them to treat females like sex objects. But, I can’t truly teach them that because the experience they are having in this world is that girls, young women, and adult women treat themselves like sex objects. I used to be one of those women who hid my insecurities by claiming feminism. But, exposing your body doesn’t make you a feminist. It doesn’t make you strong, or empowered. It makes you vulnerable and exposed.

  309. OMG there is a world of difference between girls in their bedrooms taking sexy pics and boys on the beach in their swim trunks with their little sister…where in the world are all your minds at. From what I can tell, the boys are dressed appropriately for where they are and if you cant horse around at the beach and pray tell I will bet the boys have more on with just their trunks than most girls do with their whole bathing suit. And as for preaching I dont think she is…she stated her own feelings about the problem..shes not trying to push them on you…its her choice if they want their boys to see girls’ pics like that and we should never belittle someone for bringing her choices to the board…I applaud her article and her photos…she has a very nice looking group of boys and a beautiful daughter.

    Thank you Kim…awesome article and I will share it with everyone.

  310. I found it heart-breaking to read so many comments that were so abundantly full of judgment and severely lacking grace.

    The author left a comment not only clearing up for everyone what she meant, but also apologizing to you all if you found any of her post to be offensive. She didn’t try to defend herself or debate with any of you.

    Mrs. Hall, thank you for your insight on such a relevant subject, your courage and steadfastness in the way you and your husband lead your family, and your humbleness in the response to the comments left on this page. You are bearing such a good image of our King :)

  311. I absolutely love what you wrote here. Remember, many of the inappropriate comments from your story are from people who decided to leave their name as “Anonymus” That means they don’t even have the courage to say these comments themselves! Those hiding behind the anonymus name have no power behind their comments.

    That being said, your article is amazing :-) I will share this one day with my baby girl when she is grown up, and help her to understand what her mindset should be in interacting with boys and men! Thanks for an awesome new approach to the subject.

  312. I love this! I’m the oldest of 3 girls and our little brother is 9! I love this piece so much! Im so thankful to see other good families like this! It gives me hope that other kids still know values and are parents are cherishing raising their kids right too!

  313. As a mom of four boys… I loved your thoughts and the pictures didn’t phase me, because that is us, naturally, all.the.time. :) It is sad to me the way THIS many people will jump so passionately to pick this apart completely out of context and without any BALANCE as if they can’t tell the difference between truly baiting pictures and pictures like those of your sons. Just silly. Quick to pick apart! And who can throw that first stone anyway? What do these people, quick to pick your post apart, watch or listen to, speak about, or how do they handle things in their own lives? Do they support Hollywood, ever?? There is a time to “judge” and then there is a time to understand with common sense and love…. and just show that one has good sense. Goodness. There is no telling why they feel so inclined to point out your alleged error. It is obvious that you were posting pictures of LIFE…and not of sexy boy poses intended to entice a sexually rabid audience. Unfortunately, instead, you enticed a judgmentally rabid audience. Your article was AWESOME…and I’m saving it for MY BOYS. :) Keep your head up. If everybody represented in these comments had their lives scrutinized…there would be shame in all corners. :) Because God’s light reaches into everything…not just well meaning moms’ blog posts with pictures she didn’t realize would be seen in a light she didn’t intend. I can think of many other things worth tearing down or picking apart than THIS awesome article. *hug* Keep up the good writing. This was beautiful. Blessings!

  314. Ok I am going to be devil’s advocate here and Comment on so many of the posts I have read above. It seems to me you should be more concerned over how our young girls are presenting themselves on the internet rather then trying to discredit her message over a “beach” photo. The photo of the boys merely shows them on the beach hamming it up. I see nothing sexual in the pose. It was not a closeup. Nor were the boys making sexual gestures, or doing anything of a sexual content. The pictures that Mrs. Hall is talking about is pictures taken of girls in their bedrooms, and on their beds, in towels or less. They have sexually suggestive expressions on their face, the pouty or fishy face, and their backs are arched. They are trying to look sexy. This does not compare to the pic of her sons just goofing around at the beach. I for one respect her message, respect the kind of boys she is trying to turn into mature responsible young men. And i for one think the letter was wonderful ( as a mom of many girls) I do not feel a beach picture of her boys having fun in the sun does not take from the message one bit.

  315. As many have noted, it is the height of irony that you would use a picture of your shirtless sons on the beach to tell girls that if they even once – no second chances – post something she considers inappropriate in any way, they are done, unfriended…I.e. unworthy to be friends with your boys. No double standards or sexism there now, is there? But there is more going in here. staying connected with your kids and their online world? Great! Teaching them people and relationships shoud be disgarded when someone makes a mistake? Not nearly as good a lesson. Why not leave them in the updates category – and kindly and gently bring it to their attention that they posted something which made your collective family uncomfortable? Or if it really crosses into an area you find inappropriate, contact their parents and tune them in too? Remaining in relationship is tougher, will call for more tough conversations, but also treats these girls you are commenting about as human beings of immense value who deserve more that rejection. Too bad – could have been a great article if you had shown a bit more grace for kids growing up in a digital age and learning how to navigate it.

  316. STOP SAYING THE SAME THING OVER AND OVER AND READ HER RESPONSE. IT’S IN BLUE AND EASY TO FIND…when you’re not too busy being your own kind of hypocrite. There is a vast difference between the pictures she has posted and those which she speaks of. There are feminist issues to address in the world, double standards and such…but this post does not epitomize them in any way. Read what she has to say and open your mind. Our young (boys and girls) need guidance when it comes to what they do and post online. I love this post, I love this parent, and I am completely ok with fun, happy, family beach pictures.

  317. I thought your words were great. But something was bothering me and I couldn’t put my finger on what it was. So I went back over the post, trying to figure it out. Then I realized. While you are talking about these unnamed girls pictures, you are posting pictures of your boys wearing only shorts. And your own daughter in her swimsuit.

    Ok, I get it, they are swimming. The shorts are to the knees. The swimsuit is a one-piece and she is just a little girl after all. But what sort of precedent are you setting? Why is it okay for a boy to be seen with his shirt off but not for a girl … just because she’s a bit more bumpy? Girls look at scantily clad boys in a sexual way too, you know!

    I don’t want to be critical, but it just seems really odd to me to say something about the girls pictures, and then in the same post put pictures of your children without shirts and in a bathing suit.

  318. I think it’s lovely, what you’re trying to do. But I think it’s harmful, what you accidentally did with the choice of pictures, and I think it’s a problem not to change it once you hear so many voices explaining the harm. I fully understand that you don’t see anything sexual about the pictures you posted. Most people wouldn’t. They’re the sorts of pictures grandparents might stick on the fridge after a family vacation, even. But you know what? Your boys are hotties. And I can guarantee you that a girl with a crush will see your shirtless boys flexing on the beach differently than you do.

    And what has struck me, after reading so many of the comments here, is that the poses – the flexing that just looks like goofing off on the beach? It’s the boy equivalent of the images you’re talking about in a way you may not have considered. Why do boys pose flexing their muscles, even in a joking way? Why is that even a trope? Because society says that strength is important to manhood – in fact the single most valuable trait a man can hope to display (at least in a snapshot). The same is true for girls, but it’s not their muscles that society values. Girls don’t even have to get beyond the Disney princess phase to learn that their figure is important and the less covered it is the better. What needs to change is the messages children internalize about where their value comes from – children of both genders. Scolding a girl (or a boy) for having low self esteem is pointless. Until kids can believe that their value is not in the flesh, there will be sexy selfies, eating disorders, social isolation for those who are different, and everything else that comes along with the void of self-worth.

  319. I appreciate the article very much, but I can’t help noticing the double standard. The Hall boys have some very low riding swimming trunks on. Once a teenage girls sees that image in a sensual way, she can not un-see it. What’s good for the gander is also good for the goose. Let’s appreciate modesty in all it’s forms.

  320. I do understand the point being made by many of the other people leaving comments, but on a small level, I think there is a difference between family vacation beach pics and bedroom/bathroom selfies. My best friend has a 14 year old daughter who is a cheerleader and is very well built. She went to the beach with her family and so there are pictures of her in a relatively modest but still two piece bathing suit posing with her parents and siblings. I find those pictures cute even though she is “half dressed”. However, the selfies that she takes in front of her bathroom mirror (at least once a week) with the camera held above her in a tank top with no bra and with the waist of her cheer shorts rolled down on hips, you know the pose, one hand on her hip with the hip jutted out to the side – those are absolutely inappropriate although more of her body is covered in clothing.

  321. When I saw your post, I thought, I want my unmarried daughters to meet your sons! But, as a mother of 7 daughters ,(4 of whom have amazing men in their lives), they are most uncomfortable seeing young men without shirts and especially posing in the masculine strength demonstrating pose. I’m sure you mean no harm, but, again, mothers of daughters want to keep their minds pure also. And although girls do not tend to think sexually the same as a male, they do “fantasize” about the male whisking them away from the life of drudgery with heroic strength, protecting them from all harm. Yeah. Sappy, and very hard for a man to live up to that image.

  322. Thank you for your article! It was very well written and truly needed in our culture today. Your boys (and daughter) are truly blessed to have parents that actually care about their every day life, and are actively guiding them as they become men (and a young woman). May God bless you with every success in your endeavors.

    Personally, I don’t see a problem with men going shirtless when they are swimming or working super hard. It only bothers me when they are going without, just to go without.

  323. I see that there are various levels of modesty, I understand that. What I don’t understand is the interpretations of what was said; many seem to read into it as if she were saying that girls should never show skin at all. Mrs. Hall was simply stating that sexually provocative photos with the obvious intent of being …sexually provocative would not be allowed in her household to be viewed by her teen sons. Great! My mom was the same way.

    This isn’t really an argument about visual stimulation. I can say that with the right pose and facial expression, a girl in a banana suit could excite a guy. A female in a one-piece swimsuit having a good time with her friends at the beach can be quite enough – but that’s not the real point because it’s a record of experience, not a message of “come hither” sent to the entire online world.

    There is a philosophical argument called “Naked vs Nude” and it really does apply, here. The question is traditionally, “When does art become porn?” Michelangelo’s “David” has been the example for quite some time. In my mind, the sum is intention – the intended purpose of the (in this case) photograph. Is it a good time at the pool? …Or something that had to be captured in a secret place where the parents wouldn’t know about it? Why would it be hidden from the parents? See the difference? …Intention.

    Personally, I’m troubled by the seemingly unending list of grown women who publically announce that they find these teenage boys sexually arousing. In fact, I’m a little shocked at the hebephilia epidemic. If this isn’t really the case, then you’re worried about what *could* be found sexually arousing to someone while Mrs. Hall is discussing what is *certain* to be found sexually arousing to most people (or teenage boys). This sort of behavior is damaging to young teenagers – certainly online.

    My mother had photos of me as a toddler, some were nude. There were bathtub photos, photos of me running around with no diaper and playing my sister’s clarinet. These were fun and memories that my mother wanted to catalog. Times have changed and I’m afraid to do the same with my daughters. They are only this age once, but I simply have to do my best to remember the cute things they do. This is all because we have become so afraid of perversion that we can no longer differentiate between innocence and provocative intent. …Thanks, society.

  324. It’s a good post… But I just have a couple of things to point out.

    Keeping your sons so sheltered like that could lead to disaster. I know a numerous amount of boys in my life who have been sheltered and kept from things like this and as they grew older and became more curious, they started rebelling against what they were taught and they started to get into things as bad as pornography and in some cases – addicted. I think the boys of this generation should be more exposed to situations like that so they can learn how to handle their temptations with the help of the Grace of God, so in the future they don’t make it a habit to act upon their temptations but instead go to The Lord. Just like Hosea did in the Bible.

    Hosea brings up my second point. You seem to be expecting amazing Christian women for your sons. Women that have no pictures like that on Facebook – well. Hosea wanted a great Christian women for himself too, but instead God spoke to him and told him to marry Gomer which was the most beautiful prostitute in town. So he did, and because of her filthy habits she tempted him like he had never been tempted before. But this was a test from The Lord, and Hosea passed the test because he knew how to handle his temptations. I’m just saying, God could speak to your sons to marry women that you may not want them to, but God is doing something through that – bringing them to Him. God’s plan can sometimes make us very confused, but then in the end it all makes sense in the most perfect way.

  325. We live in a narcissistic culture that is always looking to shift blame to others, while allowing the individual to “express” whatever they like, whenever they like, however they like with no apologies.

    The objections to your boys in their swim trunks is such an example. The idea is to discredit your objection by exposing your supposed hypocrisy. Typical.

    Images of boys on a beach in appropriate (and respectively modest) beach attire is in no way equatable to sexy bedroom photos. But I’ve noticed finger-pointers are not big on logical argumentation. They want to demonize, shift blame, and paint the situation as stemming from YOUR perceptions rather than someone’s actions.

    Don’t play the game. You are right in your objections. Unfortunately, the young ladies of our culture have swallowed the lie that overt sexuality equals beauty. It is a lie from Hell. And I applaud you for standing for the integrity of your sons.

    God bless you. Our age sorely needs the type of men your sons will grow to be.
    ———————————–
    http://www.fromnothingcomics.com

  326. I’m sure someone else will post a more thoughtful comment that really means what I want to say to you. I second whatever that is however they say it, and as a mom of 2 little girls and 1 tiny baby boy I only have brain power to muster up

    WELL DONE! ROCK ON MOM! :) ;)

    <3jeni

  327. I think you have all proved the point that a picture speaks a thousand words. Unfortunately, you missed the most important point of the post. It is a fine line to differentiate between appropriate and inappropriate. I see a family of boys with their SISTER on a beach on vacation…what is it exactly that you see??

  328. What many of you are missing is intent. The intent of these young men was to take fun, family photos; whereas the intent of the young women wearing pjs, in their bedrooms in provocative posses is to be sexual. Young women and young men can be seen as sexy while just wearing jeans and t-shirts it has to do with the intent behind the picts. She even states that if the young women made a mistake to take down the picts and move on.

    My mom always told us to never put something in writing if we did not want to see it on the front page of the newspaper. In this digital age “never take a picture of yourself you do not want to see on the front page” will be added for my children.

  329. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I am so glad to see parents like you, who watch over their boys as well as their girls! Morals seems to have gone by the wayside with lots of our youth, which is so discouraging as someday these youth will be our leaders. Praise to you for raising your children with values!!

  330. From my perspective, the posting of the boys in their bathing suits just exemplifies that there is a time and a place. Pictures of young people in bathing suits at the beach is a ‘proper time’ in my mind and pictures of suggestive images in personal places, such as bedrooms, to me seems improper. Also, as shown on some of the talk shows, such as Dr. Phil, quite often these computer cameras are hijacked and people are being watched in their own rooms where they believe they have privacy. My daughter has covered her built in camera with heavy tape to make sure no one can watch her and/or obtain images she has not authorized.

    This is the first time I have been to this blog, and I am very impressed with Mrs. Hall’s intelligent and thoughtful writing style.

    Best regards,
    Wanda Klotz

  331. Wonderful put! As a mom to 11 sons, and 6 daughters, I totally understand. I can’t count how many conversations I’ve had with my boys about girls at school; their dress or state of undress. Their reputations because of choices that lack self-worth. Who hangs out with whom. THANKS!

  332. You are an overbearing mother who is going to raise a group of boys who will never have healthy relationships with females because they will always assume all women will invade their privacy and emasculate them. Congratulations on becoming the mother you probably vowed never to become when you were a teenager.

  333. Why don’t we start asking all women to wear burkas? It would solve the problem that teenage males cannot control their temptations when they see a womans body. Problem solved. Or we could just focus on teaching our sons to respect women even if some young women occasionally choose to express their sexuality. Nah, you’re right Mrs. Hall, it’s better to just hide it and protect those boys from the real world. Fundamentalist Islam seems to have got it right in this regard. (sarcasm intended)

  334. Reblogged this on Karen Ellis's Blog and commented:
    Mrs Hall of the Hall Family said it so well, young women, please think hard about when you take a selfie photo, and post it.. it is for all to see, including employers, families and people you might rather not ever want in your lives trying to be ‘friends’.
    Don’t forget, things like this have consequences and do come back to haunt you later. Thanks, Mrs Hall for posting your thoughts.

  335. I will pray my daughter never dates anyone like a Hall boy who has parents who can’t just teach their boys to treat women with respect. Why do you think these teen girls are posting those types of pictures?? Because they gain attention. Do I approve of my daughter posting the kind of pictures you’re talking about? Absolutely not. That’s mine and my husband’s responsibility to ensure she has a strong moral character. Am I naive enough to believe she and her friends won’t make mistakes? No. Do you also force your sons to “block” their male friends who “Like” these pictures of the girls? That would only seem fair.

  336. Shame is a very slippery slope. Where I agree teenage girls (as well as women young and old) are suffering from a real lack of self-worth, I wonder if there’s a more effective approach than reiterating how unworthy they are by telling them they’re now blocked. This issue is so much larger than a teenage girl in her bedroom. Instead of shaming her, how about we take a look at where that low self-esteem originates from. How about we have a conversation with her, ask her what’s on her mind, tell her she has value just for who she is. I bet that would go a helluva lot further than shame.

  337. lot of crazies in here… bedroom shots of teenage girls in pj’s and towels DOES NOT EQUAL kids on the beach, being kids…and hey, did all you crazies not notice the lovely young lady on her bro’s shoulders…oh shudder!! the blogger is not commenting on the evils of the human body, but inappropriate pictures of young ladies in inappropriate contexts. i think i need counseling for MY outrage on YOUR(you know who you are) misplaced outrage! great post, but good luck blogger, you got your hands full here.

  338. Blame the girls for the boys’ feelings? Shame and block the girls instead of finding out more? Assume they’re being “sexual” as opposed to just being kids? Sigh. Whatever happened to talking to your kids, teaching them about sex…and allowing them to grow up and not be ashamed of their feelings? That’s how they grow into men with integrity.

    Also, posting shirtless pics of your boys and then assuming girls won’t find them sexually appealing is just naive and foolish and it defeats the entire well-meaning (yet fairy-tale like) point of your post.

  339. I guess the difference between me and the majority on here is that I don’t feel a shirtless teenage boy with swim trunks to his knees is “scantily” clad. I also don’t agree in the person above who basically said it is the sole responsibility of the boys to make sure they don’t “think impurely.” Really?! Are you telling me a young boy should be able to look at a girl in a sex pose and not think ANYTHING about it? Yes, boys SHOULD be taught to respect girls no matter HOW they are dressed, look, or act. But that does NOT excuse a young woman posing in a towel and putting it out there for everyone to see.
    Now when it comes to myself, a grown woman with three kids, I never post pictures of myself in tank tops, short shorts, or a shirt/dress with my cleavage showing. That being said, I DO post myself in pics in a bathing suit. To me it is a very different message, though basically the same attire. And I think that thinking about the MESSAGE you are sending was the “message” behind this blog post. My bathing suit is fairly modest, as are my girls’. But I guess TECHNICALLY it is no different than wearing a pair of women’s underwear and a spaghetti strap. To me, though, this is NOT the same thing. Its one of those things in question of WHERE the mind wanders when one looks at the picture. I’m at a lake, I’m playing with my kids, I’m NOT stepping out of a hot shower. There is a BIG difference. The author of this blog was making a much different point than just what girls are WEARING. Its the THOUGHT behind the picture, guys! Does no one understand messages behind writing anymore? The author is saying that when you are lying in bed with your back arched back, pouty lips, and are bra-less that you look ready for sex. NOT saying that when you take a pic of yourself at the beach with your family that you are under-dressed!

  340. It is certainly not easy raising our sons and daughters in a society where they are constantly bombarded with media images glorifying sex, violence and drugs. It is – as it always has been – our job as parents to protect and teach our children about the realities of the outside world… It’s not just girls posing provocatively in their bedrooms, it is also boys (and girls) posing with gang signs, wads of cash, or lighting up a joint – or, sadly, brandishing a gun. If you are a parent who truly cares about what your kid is up to I ask you this: Do you really have to allow your child to own a camera phone that can send and receive images? Can’t you forbid your child from having a laptop in their bedroom with full access to the internet? True, they might find a way around your rules, but why facilitate their opportunity to do things they may truly regret later in life?

  341. I am shocked that somebody sees those 2 pictures of her boys being “sexi”……….. I don’t know if I should cry or if I should laugh.

    Moms, are you insane???????????????? It is a family photo…you only noticed those boys in swim suite (too bad boys don’t wear bras….) but there is a girl on her brother’s shoulders….

    These comments about double standards are pathetic…..just so pathetic… There are faaaaaaaaar more inappropriate pictures of girls than boys… ( I happen to have a girl and a boy)

  342. I am deeply overjoyed at the way you are raising your sons. I love this blog post and I have shared it on my Facebook wall for all the young ladies out there to remember that they are indeed “ladies” or can be if they choose to be.
    My grandmother once told me, “mija, if you do what it takes for them to like you now, they won’t like or respect you later. If you don’t, they may not like you now; but they will love you later.” Not that we cannot fix our mistakes; we can be forgiven. But the pain of not being able to share that special part of yourself when you are about to marry the man that God has given you is very real. It may take awhile to respect yourself. Remember you are loveable.

  343. Very well said. I have daughters and we talk about this. I also noticed that my daughters don’t want to see other people’s sons shirt-less and flexing. Showing off there bodies in there bedrooms or “man caves”. I have removed more men than women on facebook for half-naked posts.
    Modesty is to be taught to both sexes. Women stumble just the same as Men.

  344. Awesome message! I agree totally! But I also agree about the pictures of your handsome boys. I have 2 young boys ages 9 and 7. We put on a shirt, tank top etc when swimming. Why? Cause I want to teach them modesty and to have standards too. If I had a daughter I’d be teaching her the same things so why not teach it to my boys too. I want them to respect their bodies as much as I want them to show respect to others, especially girls. It goes both ways. Thanks for the great teaching moment! I think everyone needs a reminder now and then. :)

  345. I too, love your message here and have shared it on my facebook wall for other mom’s of teens and tweens who might put forth this behavior without thinking through the ramifications of their actions. HOWEVER, there is a big double standard presented in your post.. If your sons cannot “un-see” a girl in a towel or scantily dressed with a pouty face, why would you post photos of your boys scantily dressed in muscle poses. My daughter wouldn’t be able “un-see” those pics either.

  346. As a mom of 3 teenaged boys I agree with your post. However, I find it very ironic that you post the same pictures of your boys that you are telling these girls not to post. Just because they are boys does not mean girls do not sit there and LUST after their bodies being “half naked” on the beach. Food for thought.

  347. Sorry, but where were your comments encouraging the girls to be modest for the sake of self-respect and honoring the temples which are their bodies? Your whole post is about these girls not endangering the lives of her poor sons while hypocritically posting pictures of your tanned, topless sons. What girl might see those and become aroused or interested for the wrong reasons? Aren’t your sons responsible for the chastity of these girls, by your logic? Shouldn’t their parents be blocking your blog for showing titillating photos of boys?

    You have fair ideas about modesty that I support, but the road you took to get there is totally wrong. As long as we keep teaching girls that the reason they should be modest is to preserve the morality of allegedly uncontrollable men, we take responsibility for chastity away from men and put it completely on the shoulders of women.

    Respect your body because God gave it to you. Respect your body because Jesus wants you to do so. Respect your body because it is a sacred vessel to be used for important purposes. Respect your body because the mores of Snapchat should not dictate your personal morality.

  348. Perhaps instead of blocking those young women out of their facebooks and presumably out of their lives, you should instruct your sons to think of them and treat them with respect. As in view them as another human of equal value, with their own lives, souls, passions, relationships, triumphs and mistakes. I am not sure what you were concerned about: that the women were impure (nice way of saying slut), that they would cause your sons an “uphill struggle”, that their judgement is too questionable because they do not realize the same consequences of provocative pics that you, an adult, do. If you find any of these to be true and you have real concern for these young women, then you should build relationships with them and act as a mentor and teacher and show your sons to do the same. It seems you thought the young women were lacking self-respect through modesty; if so, they will learn it best when people show them their true value by valuing them in their eyes first. Remember, Jesus sat with the sinners, too.

    Your sons will meet women throughout their whole lives who will act differently, believe different things, have different pasts and dress differently than what their or your ideal is. Its great that you care so much about your family, but remember not to lose sight of what is actually valuable. And please, as some have already said, it is a bit one sided: you posted pictures of your sons shirtless, presumably because your and their intentions are so different than girls on facebook. I don’t know what your intention is and I do not know what the girls intentions are either; however, no matter how you or the girls intended a picture to be taken does not actually affect how others perceive it. It is up to the on-lookers to control their reaction to the pictures. Just as it is your sons responsibility to control how they react to women around them.

  349. You lost every ounce of credibility you had the second I scrolled down and saw the photos of your boys flexing and contorting their half naked bodies. What is the difference between what these young ladies did and that photo of your boys?! Don’t you think those photos might spark sexual curiosity in impressionable young ladies? Stop being a hypocrite. Absolutely bogus. #doublestandards

  350. Thank you Dave Kerr, you wrote EXACTLY what I was thinking, seriously, the picture of the hall kids on the beach are neither provocative or INTENDED to be sexual, they are pictures of a family enjoying a day at the beach. The point of the article is the INTENT of the teenage girls scantily clad in their bedrooms posing sexually.

  351. I feel the same way several others ladies feel ! Why don’t you put a shirt on your boys, again, great insight but….. better clean your own closet before you start sharing with others !

  352. Love this post! Thank you thank you!!! My sons are only babies yet but I am hoping when they become teens themselves that they can find friends among girls who appreciate their bodies by not trying to show it off to every male out there. I truly hope they find woman who are respectful of themselves and of others around them.

  353. Here’s how I read your post, Kim…

    You were pleading with teen-aged girls you actually KNOW to be careful with what they post on facebook. This post was all about LOVE for these girls and your own family. I did not see one single judgmental thing about anything you said. Instead, I heard frustration and disappointment in their choices. It sounds as though these pictures were completely out of character for these young ladies and that you were cautioning them to realize what they are putting out there for the world to see.

    I also agree that, yes, once a guy sees a girl in a state of undress, he can’t unsee it and it could be hard to see that girl in person without thinking about those provocative pictures. (And, yes, the same can be said for girls seeing/unseeing pictures of guys in poorly chosen poses.) That’s not what your desire is for either your boys OR for those girls! I’m entirely saddened by the response many have written to your choice of pictures, although I can’t say I’m surprised (which is also sad). Family pictures on a beach are so VERY different than the bedroom pics you are concerned with. There is nothing immodest about your boys and your family in these pics. I really don’t even see a double standard in the choice, simply because you are differentiating between “wall-worthy” family photos (I really liked that comment), and secretive pics taken behind closed doors. Personally, I don’t have a problem with candid pics of guys or girls in swim attire, or even cute outfits (as I think it’s safe to assume you don’t, either). I do have problems, however, with TEEN-AGED girls that are TRYING to look seductive (or any girls, for that matter). (And for all you out there that get offended when girls are singled out, I don’t like pics of guys trying to be seductive while wearing next to nothing, either.)

    I have 3 boys and 2 girls. My husband and I have discussed how one of our boys, in particular, could easily have issues when he’s older with the type of visual stimulus you are talking about. I will do my VERY best to steer him clear of pics that can lead to impure thoughts, all while teaching him that those types of things are not respectful of women, and if you wouldn’t want your sister or mom posing like that, you shouldn’t be looking. (The same will go for ALL my kids.) There IS, ABSOLUTELY, an importance in teaching our boys that they are responsible for their thoughts and attitudes (especially because there are plenty of modestly dressed girls that can provoke the same responses, simply because guys are very visual). I’m actually getting that you are doing just that with your family fb surfing time. In fact, my husband and I do the same when it comes to movies and TV shows. We reserve the right, as parents, to monitor and veto entertainment choices based on what we believe is appropriate/inappropriate for our kids to see. What so many commenters seem to be willing to overlook is the importance in teaching our boys to recognize pictures and such that demoralize women and lead to improper thoughts and that they should FLEE from them. Just as it’s equally important to teach girls that such pictures are degrading to them and do quite the opposite of earning them respect from others. I’m so grateful that you and your husband are taking the time to do just that.

    One last comment, just because it’s out there and we can’t shelter our kids from absolutely everything, doesn’t mean we should just give in and say, well, fine, it’s okay. It’s NOT. I’m saddened to see so many act like it’s no big deal for girls to do these things, just because it’s everywhere in our culture. It is NEVER a girl’s fault some guy decides to take advantage of her. However, that doesn’t mean we girls should foolishly flaunt everything we’ve got, either. We do have a responsibility of our own to do our part to make women respectable. Flaunting ourselves around being seductive and provocative is NOT the way to do that.

    Thank you for your words, and your humble response to the sometimes harsh comments. God bless you for speaking out!

  354. Mrs. Hall, thank you for your post and your gracious and humble response to some very harsh, critical and down right cruel comments. As a mom of a boy and two girls and someone who has worked with youth for 2 decades I can completely understand your point. While girls are stimulated visually the biochemical reaction is not comparable. Sections of a man’s brain actually turn off when they see an image of a woman dressed immodestly. While practice and self discipline can help in this reaction it is still, in part, an uncontrollable reaction. We can teach young men how to react with their thoughts to this physical reaction but there is nothing wrong with a mother wishing girls would respect themselves and young men enough to not post pictures of themselves in blatantly sexual poses. She made no reference to girls at the beach in bathing suits but to girls taking and posting pictures that, as another commenter said, their parents would never put up on display in their home. A picture of siblings on the beach-whether bikini clad girls or topless boys-is not uncommon to see on someone’s fridge or photo album. I have never seen a parent pull out their wallet and show a picture or their son or daughter sitting on their beds topless or braless making a duck face with their chest or crotch stuck out. I do not believe that had she posted more appropriate pictures of her sons that she would have gotten less negative comments. The issue of modesty is becoming quite a hot topic and sexuality is something our culture is constantly trying to stretch the boundaries of. Mrs Hall says that she strives to raise her boys to be men of character who will treat women well. She just wants to also challenge young women to give themselves more value and root their self esteem in something other than how many likes you can get on that post of yourself posing in a way your parents wouldn’t proudly show off to friends and family.

  355. Being a teenager (once) mother and now grandmother these kids will find a way to connect with each other without your knowledge. That’s just life and the peer pressures are so much worse than when I grew up. I wish you the best of luck and especially with your daughter……God Bless.

  356. I love this blog and its message. I really think that there is a difference between the sort of photos taken on the beach in a family situation and the ones that Mrs. Hall is talking about seen on FB. If you wouldn’t feel comfortable asking your mum or dad to take the photo for you, maybe you should think twice, is how I feel about this issue. Thank you, Mrs. Hall, for having the guts to say what a lot of parents might think but don’t have the strength to say.

  357. I get the bigger picture of what you are trying to say to these girls.
    What I don’t get is the responsibility you shoulder them with. They are not responsible for your sons desires.

    I understand that you want to teach your sons to find deeper attraction to girls who are more mature and avoid relying on sexual provocation for male attention.

    Please, though. Please teach your boys that girls and women who dress or pose in provocative ways are not responsible for their sexual thoughts or desire. The biggest excuse in the world used against girls and women who are raped is that they were dressed or acted like they wanted it.

    HUMANS are sexual creatures. Not just men. HUMANS. Every single human is responsible for their own sexuality. Please don’t give them a misguided sense of superiority over these young girls. Please stop giving your sons this ridiculous expectation of perfection and purity of their future wives. NOBODY is pure. Remember that. Nobody- not even you. Not even your precious sons or DAUGHTER.

    As I said, I get the bigger picture of your message but you come across as living on a ridiculously high horse. Looking through young girls’ profiles ‘as a family’ and collectively judging these girls? You are teaching your sons JUDGEMENT not purity. You are teaching them about having un-fulfillable expectations rather than accepting their true love with unconditional love, empathy and forgiveness.

    I truly pray that you will really take a good look at the responses that your post has brought. Take the time to reflect on the deeper meaning behind your post- where you and your family are flawed. By accepting this, I hope that you will find empathy and compassion for these young girls who are just trying to find themselves and guide your sons to be more responsible for their own feelings.

  358. Your hypocrisy is astounding. You post pictures of your boys without their shirts on, at the beach, and FLEXING and you think you’re a saint pointing out how people try to promote their bodies. Unbelievable.

  359. As a mom of 4 girls, thank you. I’ve had this discussion with my teenage daughter – about not being “one of those girls” that everyone talks about. Living a Godly life and a life of integrity in this day and age isn’t easy, but it is doable.

  360. Pingback: ProWomanProLife » More on the prude revolution

  361. I would love it if we could stop blaming women when men have immoral thoughts. They are human. They are going to think about sex whether we have clothes on or not. My husband wants to have sex with me whether I’m stark naked or in my pajamas with baby puke all over my front.

    I guarantee your boys (who are all half naked themselves in the photos, I might add… quite a paradox) who are shutting down the computer and blocking girls who post these pictures have no problem looking at Victoria’s Secret ads at the mall. How many of them have walked out of a movie because a girl was shown in a bikini, a wet T-shirt? They probably really liked it, is all.

    I’m just saying that women shouldn’t be shamed into dressing modestly because “What will the boys (and their moms) think?” We should be encouraged to dress according to the integrity that we have, something you touched on only briefly. I remember thinking through high school after hearing lessons from parents of teenage boys that I was solely responsible for the morality of my guy friends. Okay, that is a huge burden on a 17 year old. I wish we could teach girls to have self-respect because it will get them further in life, not because their lack of self-respect is affecting boys’ ability to police their own thoughts and behavior.

  362. I really like the fact that you go through your family’s Facebook pages together as a family. I think it helps our kids to learn to discern when we guide them through how others present themselves and also how we present ourselves (and our families) on social media. As a representative of God we have a responsibility to present ourselves in a way that glorifies Him. We must teach them that everything they say and every image of themselves or what they are entertained by does reflect on us, our families and more importantly- God.

    I loved the picture of your children goofing around on the beach! It looks like loving siblings on a family outing. That’s awesome!

    God bless you and your sweet family as you raise your kids to live lives that reflect Him!

    In His love,
    Laurie

  363. It is not a double standard at all. Her daughter is in a bathing suit in that picture and her boys in swim trunks. That picture could be hung on the wall. But a girl in a bath towel in her bedroom not likely you would hang that on a wall. We are talking apples and oranges. Im sure she is not letting her sons take shirtless selfies to post on their facebook. Young girls are not stupid. They know the difference between a normal picture and one that is meant to get the wrong kind of attention. I wish alot more mothers out there were like her. I got a good giggle out of the part where she said she usaully has about 19 followers. Well you now have one more. Good job.

  364. I think as Christians that we should always err on the side of caution. I read the article and at first I thought it was great because I am always cautioning my daughters on purity because they are beautiful.. My 22 year old read it and thought it was great also (at first) because she is not one stimulated by looks. Then my 18 year old daughter read it and immediately picked up on the shirtless boys which at first my oldest daughter and I missed. With that said, we do not know what each person’s limit is. It is a heart issue. I have to adamantly disagree with Dave about his comment about the grown women being “sexually aroused” by the photos. Their point was that the article was about modesty and when the mom posted pictures of her sons “shirtless” but is trying to make a point on modesty, it appears hypocritical. Why put pictures of your sons at all unless you are trying to show the girls what they are missing out on by doing what she thinks is wrong. In my eyes, that is exploiting her sons. Some people think it is ok to post pictures of their family on a beach. I don’t. Why? Because if it causes one person to stumble, that is one too many. The same goes with the girls. Is she right about her point about girls? Absolutely! But, like someone else stated, girls dream about a strong, muscular, prince whisking them off to on a white horse and these pictures will stimulate some and not others. It goes both ways. We don’t know what each child struggles with and so we need to be careful about what pictures we are posting of our kids. Purity goes both ways. And it starts in the heart. And really our boys need to be the ones leading this battle not the girls. They are the future leaders of their wives and they need to begin fighting the battles and putting up hedges and leading the fight against this. If more men took the stand against sexual exploitation there would be less girls and women doing it.

  365. Think mommy needs a life. She lives on another planet, it seems. Good luck with thinking any child is growing up how we did.

    I love my boys but I also realize things have change since I was a young girl and how boys may have acted back in the day.

    I feel sorry for your children.

    You can raise respectful children without blasting all teenagers who took a selfie pic. Also, I am not sure you are in the right going through young girls and boys facebook being nosey, keep it to your own children.

    Oh and please feel free to bash me for taking a pic in the dressing room, I am well over my teenage years ;)

  366. As a mom of 3 sons herself I agree with what you are saying in your post to the daughters out there however are you not sending the same message the girls are with the pictures that you chose to use of your sons in this very post? What boys post is just as important as what girls post. Though what you are saying to the girls is true, its true for the boys as well. I wish you had chosen different pictures to use in your post to reflect what you were trying to say instead of doing exactly what you were saying the girls should not.

  367. Oh…bless your heart…you definitely created a stir. As a Mother of grown and married sons (22 and 24) with a baby sister (12)…I understand what you are “saying”…but I can assure you that my extremely conservative 12 year old daughter’s eye would have caught sight of your handsome sons. Sin has indeed twisted a normal, natural thing like physical attraction into a dark and evil thing…”lust”…and both boys and girls fight that battle. What you see as “innocent famly photos” may be viewed through a different lens in a sin sick world. It would be great if everyone shared the conviction of modesty…but everyone is fighting their own battle of sanctification…daily…and we cannot force others to share our personal convictions…that is the work of the Holy Spirit. When your daughter is a bit older (and you begin to block photos of half dressed guys on social media) and you have to help her navigate “stylish” clothing options…and especially when your sons marry/date gals who do not dress conservatively enough in your eyes…you will understand the “stir” your blog has generated. It is your blog…people can choose to read it or not…there is no reason to be harsh…as Believers and representatives of Christ…we must guard our words/deeds lest we turn others away or cause them to stumble. As a Sister in Christ…I extend grace…and thanks for a much needed chuckle…God has a great way of customzing our individual life lessons…stay in the battle!

  368. Yeah!!! Way to raise sissies! They’re kids, let them have their fun. I mean seriously?? Do you want them to grow up gay?? By all mean acting like a Nazi to your boys, forbidding this, forbidding that, it never works. The only thing that would do is make them do more silly things you don’t approve of. Be smart and let them be the people they want to be, and not the people YOU think they should be. So they saw a girl in a towel. wow. They’re scarred for life. Get them to therapy fast. smh

  369. Your writing is great, and I appreciate the additional information you shared in the comments. As a mother of three girls, I know girls sometimes make mistakes. Hopefully, those girls have parents who are just as watchful as you are, and those pictures are removed… and the family takes it as an opportunity to discuss what is appropriate. I think the message you are trying to share 1) know your audience 2) know your audience could be more than you intended 3) photos live forever on the internet. 4) Be classy and 5) let your inner beauty shine through… is fantastic.

    As a mother whose daughter was recently on the receiving end of another mother’s vicious tongue lashing over her choice of swimwear, I also think parents need to be careful about being judgmental. There is a difference between sultry bedroom poses and a cute shot in a bikini with friends at the beach.

    I don’t see a lot of the types of photos you describe (male or female) on my kids’ FB pages. What I find more disturbing is the disrespectful language and racial slurs (which tend to be posted more by boys than girls).

    I agree with you that it is important to be involved in your kids’ lives and have family discussions about what is appropriate. Thank you for a thought-provoking post. Best wishes!

  370. I personally think this is a great article. I don’t see anything wrong with the pictures of your boys either. Yes, they are in swim shorts at the beach and that may cause some girls to think of them in a “sexual” way. Some people will think of others in a sexual way no matter what they are wearing. It is slightly different then what you are referring to though (girls deliberately taking pictures with no bra’s or wearing just a towel and deliberately posing in a “sexy” way). Let’s be realistic here people. And I think it is *awesome* that you check up on your boy’s social media sites. SO many parents refuse to do so because it’s “invading my child’s privacy” or “I don’t want to be overbearing” and then all kinds of bad stuff can (and does) happen.

  371. You know how women in the Muslim world are forced to wear Hijabs to cover up any bit of skin that could provoke a man? – the way you are asking girls to censor themselves here is in the same train of the thought. The idea that it is WOMEN who have to cover themselves instead of MEN who have to control themselves.

  372. Love this post, however,I can’t help but agree that, why the heck would this article’s pictures be with the boys flexing their muscles with no shirts on?? What was she thinking? Very contradictory. This would have been perfect; such a great message, but its like a complete double standard. I have a teen son and teen daughter, so I can see both sides of this situation. Boys, just as much as girls, should not try to imitate half naked, sexually provoking Abercrombie models. I’ve seen some very offensive pictures by boys,that were just as bad, if not worse than I have from girls! If the girls are to be expected to stay respectful of themselves and their bodies, the boys should be as well. I think this article is a little one sided. I also think she should do a little research on what teen boys post..she may be in for an shocking surprise! This message should be addressed to all teens! :)

  373. Great blog post!! I have a 15 year old son, 8 and 1 year old daughters. I live this now and will for many years. It’s shocking to see the pictures girls and boys post on social media. I still get in my sons accounts and I don’t think twice about deleting pictures and un-friending people….thankfully he is so busy with school and sports he rarely has time to be on them these days. It’s so important to talk to your sons and daughters about what they post, text and tweet….I have had to make my son delete something he posted without thinking…and honestly until I spoke to him about it he never gave a thought to WHY it was wrong. Teenagers don’t always think before they act..they are immature..that’s why GOD put us in a place of authority..to teach our children, and by teaching them we show them love.

  374. It’s sad that grown women and men would find photos of boys in their swimming suits sexy (apparently they need to deal with their own issues). In this world, you can make your own point, and then hear from all the people that disagree. Especially men who take issue with a woman wanting to protect girls from their own misguided attempts at sexual attention from anyone on social media.

  375. I loved the post. I love the fact that you sit around as a family and share your “friends” with each other. You are doing a good job. The pictures of the boys on the beach are in no way inappropriate. We go to the beach and expect girls and boys in swimsuits. You guys were just being a family enjoying the sun and each other.

    For the misinformed reader, pay attention to what your kids are posting and texting. You may be mortified if you actually saw your 15 year old daughter deliberately tempting boys with her lack of clothes and poses. I dare to say that you would not put that picture on your living room wall. This is not about making girls ashamed of their bodies, it is about teaching them to respect their own body. Girls and boys alike disrespect their own bodies trying to get attention from the opposite sex in inappropriate ways. Not to mention the creeps out there that use GPS locators to find the kids in these pictures. Yes it happens.

  376. Dave you have stated it the best. My concern as well as I was reading the post was of the women that were questioning the posing of the boys, their muscles, their wet bodies, etc. When reading through the post, I focused on what the statement was.

    I did look at the photos (I’m what I like to call Mamarazzi, I run around with a camera), but I looked at them as a mother. A mother of boys. The photos are memories that you never want to forget. To get all of your children in one photo on vacation is a challenge, the moment when your able to catch one ‘sitting’ and watching the sunset…priceless, and of course the selfie of Mom and son (those don’t come by so easy at a certain age).

    The story was to focus on the sexy selfies. Not only does this come from teenagers, but from grown women and men. I have boys that constantly have my phone and glance at my social media accounts, I have to monitor my own pages due to men and women’s actions and language.

    I have pages associated with Crossfit, marathons and Active events, there are times that any of these post photos of ‘active’ men and women at times partially dressed. I don’t find those offensive, I find that to be hard work and determination. And use those as a statement to educate my kids. I have several sports pages, when they are broadcasting ‘athletes’ partially dressed (shirtless, volleyball players, hot pants, cheerleaders, dance teams, etc.) while training, again, creating a goal and working hard for it.

    Educating, monitoring and speaking to our children (male or female) about what is right and what is wrong. Take time…go through your kids social media pages today and see what you find. Go through your own page and see what you might see as inappropriate. You might be surprised!

  377. I personally don’t think she was saying girls should be ashamed of their bodies. She never mentioned blocking them because of beach photos, It’s the poses she objects too, not the girls looks or beauty and I for one agree with her. We already have generations of men and women who ONLY value looks and financial status, and look where that’s gotten us. Selfies are fine for these kids to do, but don’t make it look like a porn star audition. THAT is the point.

  378. …how is this hypocrisy? They’re at the beach. A public area where 98% of people (both girls and boys) are shirtless. Her post read about pictures in closed doors, (as she stated being in nothing but a towel after a shower) but I’m sure picture with your mom/dad at the beach isn’t what she was making reference to. Great article with a great message.

  379. Excellent points. Poor choice of pictures of your boys to post. A better choice would have reflected them as the modest men you are trying to raise, not the pop culture sexy that is so prevalent and pushed to our young men and women alike!

  380. To all the defensive people who have replied: I am pretty positive that this mother isn’t saying that girls shouldn’t pose in bathing suits. There have been many fun appropriate beach pictures over the summer! Most of which can be tastefully done. This woman is talking about the provocative poses which can NOT even compare to this silly picture at the beach! Wake up parents! Stop being in denial and admit that your daughter (or son!) twerking or making rude gestures on social media is not an upstanding, respectful thing to do. I certainly don’t see my boys posting half the things I see coming from some girls… Oh, wait, but it’s because I actually parent. That’s right. Whether you have a son or a daughter, just PARENT!!! And for those of you who are defensive….my guess is you probably have a good reason to be! Easier to put it back on this mother for posting a beach picture than it is to actually open yours eyes and deal with parenting your own ‘sweet’ children. You must be so proud of the fact that your daughter can do the splits standing up in a bikini while flipping off the camera and then twerking. Bravo!

  381. THANK YOU MRS HALL! I am sure that your boys will truly know the value of a good woman when they are ready to find one. You made the comment that you pray for their future spouses. I have grandchildren that range in age from 23 to 6 and I pray daily for their future spouses. May GOD give you blessings more than your life can hold! Boys, thank you Mom! she is truly a WONDERFUL MOMMA!

  382. The only thing I got from your post was that it’s okay for YOU to post pictures of your son’s half dressed, flexing there muscles show casing their bodies, but its not okay for girls to do this? Had they been normal beach photos, not posed, I think I would feel slightly different. But this post was purely hypocritical.

  383. Wow, what a hot topic, right? I completely understand this article. How unfortunate the lines that are read in between. Also, unfortunately, sexuality has become the norm for promoting oneself and measuring worth & gaining worth, even among friends, so the lines separating the genders is extremely blurred even if it is only skin deep. Parents need to encouragement.
    My biggest applause is for the family communication and preservation represented here – you are not giving your sons up to the excuses of the world, or to the excuses of self, like so many parents allow or approve of. Also for your enthusiasm for the potential in your sons’ friends. I would challenge you, even at the risk of social exclusion, that it is better for your SONS to approach their friends with concerns rather than posting the issues online. To build integrity, courage and respect in your sons, it takes practice and action; and it will plant a seed in the minds of these girls and their male friends — and it will be between peers, and it is commendable for any teen to stand up in privacy for what he believes in despite the repercussions. Today, it is hard to find a parent who will keep their children accountable, and expect them to do the same with their friends.
    I’m trying to raise my 3 boys to be respectful of everyone (including themselves and people who are different than them) and measure themselves and others by integrity and the inner beauty instead of the physical body and sexuality, or what a person appears to be on the outside. We are just at the beginning — I haven’t gotten to the hard part yet, but I always try to redirect them to the line of thought that I would RATHER them be focusing on, to the action I’d like them to take, while remaining on the same subject. I want them to understand that sexuality is only one part of a blessing instead of the whole of a person. I will encourage them to stick up for themselves and tactfully approach friends (boys and girls) with confidence on issues like this and other issues as well: I will encourage THEM to build-up the girl instead of take advantage, I want THEM to sharpen their male friends so that they have a good accountability base — I don’t want them to take part and I don’t want them to ignore the issue and/or passively await the girl who lives up to a high set of standards; because no one escapes failure and people are broken, and people do humble themselves and find out who they really are, and they must be loved. The family at home will always be here to support them.

  384. Reblogged this on 100 Classics Challenge and commented:
    As a parent of a son who has just entered teenagehood this is a concern that I really can understand. I love how this mother handled the situation. I am saving this post and will refer to it when I need to. Kudos to these parents for being involved in their children’s social media lives.

  385. Bleh. This is disgusting. Hey, Mrs. Hall! How about instead of creeping through every teenage girl on your sons’ fb and checking whether or not they’re wearing a bra in every photo (and assuming that they want to date your sons in the first place), talk to your boys about respecting women and not seeing them as sexual objects even when they’re striking a “red carpet” pose. To assume that every girl your son is friends with is trying to be his future wife and every girl taking a selfie is trying to seduce your son is narcissistic if not problematic. You can’t walk out the door without women being sexualized by adverts, fashion, or pop culture. Instead of futilely trying to banish all (perceived) sexual imagery from your sons’ fragile eyes and blaming women for how they’re viewed (rather than a society that constantly links a woman’s worth to their sexuality while simultaneously bashing them for being “immodest”), how about you start an open discussion with your sons like a decent parent ought to.

  386. And what of the photos your sons send to our daughters, wearing only one item of clothing? Oh – wait – that isn’t your sons posting those photos, it’s YOU. Three photos, and in only one of them is a shirt evident. How hypocritical of you, to judge girls for wearing only one LAYER of clothing, and yet post photos of your own sons wearing only one ITEM of What are YOU trying to say?

    Did you know that once a female sees your sons in a state of undress, she can’t ever un-see it?

    And your solution to monitoring your sons’ online interactions is to show all photos to all family members, giving your youngest son an eyeful of what was intended for the eldest? Giving your husband an eyeful of what was intended for your youngest, with a red carpet pose, the extra-arched back, and the sultry pout, or only a towel? “I know your family would not be thrilled at the thought of my teenage boys seeing you only in your towel. Did you know that once a male sees you in a state of undress, he can’t ever un-see it? You don’t want the Hall boys to only think of you in this sexual way, do you?” What about your “never un-seeing” husband viewing these photos?

    If you want to privately go through your sons’ social accounts, and PRIVATELY discuss your opinion regarding each photo with the respective son, and block these individuals, that’s fine, but what you’re so self-righteously claiming to do is spread what is – in your own opinion – child porn to the Whole Family, while posting half-nude photos of your own children. Wow. You’re a regular mother of the year.

  387. How about instead of blocking the girls who post pictures that you disagree with, you view it as a challenge to your boys to overcome their crippling primal instincts. Instead of teaching them that it’s up to the girls to behave properly, how about you give some responsibility to your apparently amazing sons? I liked the article, I just hate that we live in a world where a double standard such as this exists. Are your sons so consumed with inappropriate thoughts when they happen to see a girl posed sexily that they can’t concentrate on anything else? Instead of ignoring the problem, and blocking girls who posted pictures that they feel makes them look good, maybe teach your sons to show them the same respect that they would give to modestly clothed women. Just a thought.

  388. I think this is a great article. Being the mother of two young girls, I completely agree 100%. Girls in their pajamas with no bras, etc. is a FAR cry from boys in board shorts at the beach. For all of you posting hate comments as “anonymous,” grow a pair. If you believe what you say, attach your name to it. I am not religious AT ALL. As far as I am concerned, teaching modesty to young women has nothing to do with religion. It’s just good parenting, plain and simple.

  389. I think that the article is fantastic and it’s how I teach my children as well. However, as many many have pointed out, the pictures of your boys are not appropriate. Perhaps you are not aware that you have very attractive sons. Had my 9 year old daughter been standing here I would’ve been forced to scroll through very quickly so that she wouldn’t see it for too long. If I have to do that, then I know it’s inappropriate. You can keep those pictures in your family album or living room wall if you want to, but the rest of us do not want our little girls staring at very cute shirtless boys posing on the beach. I am so sorry to have to agree with so many others on this point. It doesn’t matter that they’re on the beach and not in the bedroom. If it were pretty teenage girls posing in a bathing suit on the beach I probably wouldn’t let my 13 year old son stare at those pictures either, right? I think your article would carry more weight without the photos–and I do want it to carry more weight. It’s very well written.

  390. As a mother of a teenage daughter and early 20’s son, I have seen both sides of the issue. The article was well written and I applaud your willingness to address this subject. The pictures you posted were probably not the best choice for this article, but when you said there is a difference in posting pictures on the beach in swimwear and posting pictures from your bedroom/bathroom, you are correct. I do not want to see my son or daughter, or any of their acquaintances posed in bathrooms, bedrooms, etc. I can tell you, though, that if my daughter or her friends saw your sons’ pictures, and they thought they were cute (and they would), they would be tempted to send pictures of them posing to try and get their attention. And my son and his friends would post pictures of themselves trying to get girls to send them pictures posing. Does that make sense? We need to be careful with our sons and our daughters — what THEY see can never be unseen.

  391. I agree with your article – am not afraid to leave my name & clearly understand the difference between provocative poses & fun beach pictures. (I threw up in my mouth a little that some of these people find the pictures of your sons sexually provocative) ??? I also like what someone said above about the difference being that your beach pictures could be out in the family room – they are just a family at the beach vs. a young girl trying (and succeeding) to look sexy.

    Your pictures show you are fun & down to earth. You aren’t afraid to have your daughter in her swim suite in the family picture with the boys – she is in modest attire & the boys are in modest male attire. Cute, pretty, fun, attractive – all good words. Sexy – not so much for the kiddos. I have a feeling you’d jump all over those boys for acting inappropriate. You are training them to be men of integrity who will recognize the same in a young woman. Bravo!

  392. Excellent article – thank you for sharing & putting yourself out ‘here’ for everyone else to react to. I wholeheartedly agree with you, and shared the post with all my facebook friends. No matter how rude or kind comments might be, you have started a conversation that is important! I’m praying that God would bless you beyond measure and protect your heart.

  393. Wow! As a youth minister’s wife I completely agree with your standard but can’t help but notice the double standard you seem to operating on. We too have strick rules that we live by at our home. One of the things I’m always pounding into my husbands head is that he can’t walk around showing skin. I don’t want my daughter to ever be in a situation where she feels comfortable for a guy to take most of his clothes off. I know society says it’s okay, but it also says what you mentioned above is okay too. Christians are the worst at giving ourselves a bad name or rep. so, I feel it’s imparitive that we don’t operate on double standards. I did not take the time to read other’s comments; so, if my comment/reply is a broken record then I appologize. I only stop to read your blog post because I saw numerous fellow Christians and church members share it on Facebook and thought there must be something good here. Unfortunately, my no. 1 pet peeve is double standards. I appologize if this critique causes any grief but I hope it’ll serve as a lesson learned in a good positive way that would benefit the future wives of your sons as well as other young ladies. I’m sure they would appreciate it. Please remember that lust isn’t a male only sin.

  394. I loved this! I completely agree 100%! It’s even sad for me, to see many of friends doing the exact same things! It’s hard because I want to tell them “You’re better than this vulgarity! You don’t need to show so much to be beautiful or Curse to be ‘In’. You may be receiving attention,but it’s definitely not the kind of attention you want!” but I don’t want to anger them :/ I’m quite blunt and honest and it kicks me in the butt every now and then. I very much enjoyed your post! Many Girls just below my age need to read this! They are lost and perhaps need this kind of guidance. :)

  395. I truly understand and appreciate your message here, but why the shirtless pics of yours sons? Maybe a double standard considering the message of the blog.

  396. I completely agree with your article. I am a bit confused at the irony of you posting pictures of your handsome sons showing off their muscles in swimming trunks pulled down past their tan lines. Mothers of boys need to watch how they dress, also.

  397. You are judgmental and ridiculous. How about we teach young men to respect a women regardless of how she displays her sexuality? This is the exact thought pattern that faults women for being raped and/or sexually assaulted. Unbelievable.

  398. I have to wonder if Mrs. Hall is even reading these comments anymore. But I know I was also thinking, “What’s up with the pictures of her half naked sons flexing all their muscles and doing exactly what all the teenage boys do in their sexy look-at-me selfies!” Does she not know that 6-packs and biceps flexed (in bathroom mirrors, in bedrooms, in gyms, on beaches) in photos are the boy version of the sexy pouty-mouthed girl? Is it irony, hypocrisy or ignorance on her part?

    It is extremely important for girls to pay attention to the kinds of images they are putting out on social media, and to be responsible for themselves in understanding how their public images, and their behavior choices, can result in all kinds of real life consequences–but they should also know that it’s definitely NOT their responsibility to make sure that boys (or men) aren’t looking at them or thinking about them in sexual ways. Girls (and women) are not responsible for the thoughts or the behavior of boys (and men). Why doesn’t she tell her boys that they need to learn to be responsible for themselves? It needs to go both ways, I think.

    Mrs. Hall should really have made different photo choices. Maybe she doesn’t see it because she is their mother, but those are some very good looking boys. I find it hard to believe that she wouldn’t know this about her own boys. And whether swim attire is appropriate for the beach (which it is clearly is) is not the issue–it is the use of those particular photos in conjunction with the subject matter and intent of the post that creates a problem here. Yes, those are very much wall worthy photos of a great looking bunch of kids having fun on a family vacation. Wholesome and normal. But I guarantee you that any teenaged girl coming over to visit could not fail to notice the level of boy hotness in the photo (she might even take a phone shot and tweet it out to her followers)–whether it’s on the living room wall or not. And she won’t un-see it either.

    It’s a good blog post, it’s attention getting and relevant, and Mrs. Hall is a good writer, but perhaps some more thought should have gone into it before hitting “post.” Especially about what she is saying about and to the girls she addresses here. Girls should be encouraged to understand that they are so much more than a sexy pout mouth. They are beautiful because of who they are on the inside. If they had that message, maybe they wouldn’t feel that the sexy selfie is the only way to be desirable. Especially in our sex driven culture of now. This post is shaming to girls and places them firmly in the position of being responsible for what boys may or may not be thinking or fantasizing about her. That is very, very slippery slope toward a rape culture that blames the victim. It really, really is.

    It is incredibly hard to be a teenager. For both sexes. They all deserve a little compassion. I don’t think the writer had any idea this post would blow up the way it has–but there are lessons to be learned on all sides I think. Every mother of a boy has the incredible opportunity to raise a good man who understands that women (all humans) are to be respected and treated with dignity, and that they as individuals are in control of their own thoughts and their behavior and that they can make good and decent choices. To raise a man like that is a gift to all of society.

  399. I applaud you for taking a stance for your sons. There is a battle to raise responsible men in this generation. However, the pictures of your boys make your story rather hypocritical. It shows how sexist our country and world still remains. A by has multiple partners and he is sowing his royal oats, but a woman is seen as a skank or worse. I am not passing judgement on you and you are well within your right as a parent. However, when you go public you leave yourself open to constructive and no so constructive comments. I wish you well in your plight, but I think you are sending your sons mixed messages. They just may think that snagging a woman means to show their abs first rather than their brains. One lasts a lifetime……the other fades with time. No offense was intended by my comments.

  400. Controversy about Mrs. Hall’s choice in photos aside, I agree with the underlying intent behind this post. I’m willing to believe that she does what she can to teach her boys to become respectful, upstanding men. HOWEVER, as the mother of 4 girls, and an aunt to several nephews, I have to say: everyone makes mistakes. It is up to us as parents to develop their ability to recognize that a bad choice was made and to rectify the situation. “And so, in our house, there are no second chances, ladies” is a ridiculously hard line to take–especially from someone who clearly admits in a comment that she has made mistakes of her own. A couple of my girls have been guilty of posting questionable selfies, but raised eyebrows and a discussion about why the photos were probably inappropriate – and they were promptly removed. My daughters didn’t immediately see the implications of those particular photos -and that’s ok. But they did understand “the big deal” after my husband and I explained our perception. In Mrs. Hall’s book, my girls might have been written off before they ever knew what they did was wrong. I’m extremely lucky to say that my girls are all well behaved and gifted, honor students; but they’d have been stricken from her boys’ friend list without a chance. Sometimes they do the “fun things” their friends do, before we realize we didn’t prepare them for that particular situation. Social media wasn’t a thing for us growing up, so we weren’t quite ready for it. We were reactive vs proactive at first.

    Anyway, In addition to our parental obligation to teach our children good morality, my siblings and I also do what we can to ensure our children can recognize behavioral patterns along with a person’s true character. Our children may not always get it right, but they are learning to be independent thinkers; that can never happen if mommy is always there like a binky. They’re learning to recognize others’ attempts to manipulate, seduce, or instigate desired responses. Constant interference isn’t going to promote independence.

    For example, one of my girls has two male friends that are, coincidentally, also friends with each other. Boy #1 habitually posts bathroom “six pack selfies” and is sometimes vulgar. Boy #2 also posted a six pack selfie (only one), but his posts are generally respectful and intelligently written. Boy #2 consistently appears to put the brakes on Boy #1’s antics when they appear on 2’s wall. My daughter automatically ranks Boy #1 low, because he’s a habitual offender. She took it upon herself to unsubscribe from his news feed. But boy #2 has shown some redeeming qualities…my daughter thinks he deserves a little more observation. She’s not ready to write him off, and I agree with that assessment. So far, all 4 of my daughters do this *fairly* well without my intervention. That’s not to say I don’t review their decisions… they are preteens and teens after all. But sometimes we need to enable our children to make their own decisions — or, “put the smackdown on ‘em” if all else fails and yours turns out to be the “bad kid.”

    …But that’s another issue.

  401. Can anyone say whoops? It’s a case of the best-laid plans of mice and men….. but she definitely has a very valid point. Those boys (and sister) in the one picture are HAMMING IT UP for heaven’s sake. If the author had posted a picture of one of her boys was on a bed in a speedo, well, we would all be crucifying her and for good reason. But a girl in a towel or in minimal clothing taking a picture of herself is aiming for a very different audience reaction. Come on people! We’ve all seen those pics. They are completely different photos than boys on the beach having a nice time.

  402. This is a wonderful article and one worthy of sharing. As a mother of 1 girl and 3 boys who are all grown now btw, I wholeheartedly agree with all that you have said. I do not agree with all those who have posted negatively regarding your sons in your photos. Logic tells me you are targeting young girls who are posing immodestly and or suggestively secretly (even though once they post their pics it is no longer secretly) Logic also tells me it is quite acceptable for boys to be seen shirtless (not so for girls) Logic tells me that your photo is a family photo as it also depicts your daughter (not an individual “selfie” trying to stimulate fantasy in another individual) and it appears it is a family FUN time and not sexual in any stretch of the imagination. Those who do see it this way should examine their own perspectives and start exercising their own LOGICAL THINKING. Quit making something out of nothing and put your attention back on the message. If it was a picture of 3 sisters and their little brother, in their bathing suits, being silly on the beach, that the author was referencing I am sure the author would not be writing this blog. Never be afraid to share your care and love of family no matter what other illogical individuals may say or think.

  403. While I believe your intentions were good, I think (and it should be clear by all the attention this article is getting) that they were not well thought out. Kudos to you for teaching your sons not to objectify women—that’s something to be applauded. But their pureness of heart is entirely their responsibility, and that’s the message you should be communicating to them, instead of blaming the girls.

    In the society we live in, women are still less-than-human, sexual objects, valued primarily for their looks. If you want to change the world for your sons, that’s where your focus should be—on a society that places less value on a woman’s brains, talents, Godliness, etc.—than on their looks. Then, there would be more girls posting about books they’ve read or cool things that they’ve done, and less sexy selfies.

    We are all manipulated by society – men and women equally – even Christians (because God is perfect and people are not) but the important thing to remember here is that men, who make up half of society (and who make MORE of the decisions that impact our society, because they’re the leaders) share equally (if not more) in that responsibility. Young girls post things like that because they understand that boys – even Christian boys – like them. And, honestly, your post just confirms that suspicion.

    Yes, young girls have agency over their actions. But so do boys. Nowhere in the Bible do I recall a man (or woman for that matter) sinning and Jesus saying “it was so-and-so’s fault.” So if you don’t want your boys to sin, teach them not to sin. DON’T teach them that someone else’s sexy selfie has anything to do with it.

  404. This is such a damaging message, and it scares me that so many people support it. I think it’s really disappointing that you seem to think that your sons are incapable of seeing pretty women in sexy poses, and not continue to think that they’re human beings deserving of respect. Further, I think it’s deeply disturbing that you think that this is a character flaw for which other people need to compensate. Your sons are going to be bombarded with sexual imagery for the rest of their lives. It’s your job as a mother to arm them with the tools they need to deal with it, and recognize that, clothes on or off, women are people too.

    You said in your post that “men of integrity don’t linger over pictures of scantily clad high-school girls”. Why aren’t you raising your sons to be those men of integrity?

  405. Hi,
    I am a teenage girl who really appreciated your article and what you had to say. I didn’t even think about the pictures you posted of your teenage boys until I started to read the comments. To me they were just pictures of teenage boys having fun at the beach. As I read on though, I did come to see the commenters points. Just because it isn’t something I struggle with that doesn’t mean that other teenage girls do not.

  406. Can not for the life of me wrap me head around the fact you think a photo of a bra-less girl in her PJ’s (seriously who wears a bra to bed?!) is unacceptable – yet multiple pics of your shirtless sons is totally fine…..wow lady just wow.

  407. Surely if the boys really had a strong moral compass, it wouldn’t matter how many “sexy selfie” photos girls post – the boys wouldn’t look because, you know, they have a strong moral compass. It takes no strength at all not to look when there’s nothing to look at. Stop blaming girls for the behaviour of boys.

  408. Your boy is growing up. He IS going to look at scantly clad women (or men, depending on his preference. Not trying to be funny; there’s nothing wrong with being gay; although, by the looks of the blog, I think if you knew your son was gay, you’d cry and send him to those awful “pray the gay away” camps) so basically, well Moms, Dads…get over it. This generation has computers. Your generation had magazines and binoculars. Hey, you guys are in charge; put a damn block on his computer.
    Sin is also an outdated term and idea, anyway. However, there’s no arguing with that amount of vivid stupidity. I guess using outdated ideas and terms somehow makes your ideology “right”. I feel really sorry for your kids and other parents who actually believe that your “perfect” children aren’t human and therefore, are curious about sex.

  409. hypocrite at it’s finest…. you are ostracising them by looking through their Facebook accounts and publicizing it. a girl in a towel is more covered than a boy in a bathing suit (as shown in picture posing)….. You think you are doing them good but in fact damaging your boys for life!! its 2013…. not 1972 whether you like it or not.. by the looks of the age of your boys they should not be forced to share their individual Facebook account details with anyone, teens need some privacy and if they don’t get it they lash out!

  410. As a mom to 2 sons and 1 daughter – all teens – I did love your post. And wow, alot of comments :D That being said, I do agree with you and appreciate your post, with a son in college – however, just recently as my daughter is a teen, we’ve really noticed her noticing boys, I do have to talk to her, and the boys alike. I honestly didn’t think too much about it, till she started turning heads…and noticing boys now. I have to remind my boys, especially the younger one, that though his underwear are boxers, his sister is a girl and she doesn’t need to see him walking around in just his boxers. I had to explain to him in the point of how would you feel if boys we knew walked around like that in front of her…this got his attention. This summer, he has suddenly become aware that she’s getting attention, and he’s become more protective. Sweet to see. I know you’re daughters little now, but its coming – too soon. Just wanted to share, as protective as I am of my kids hearts and minds, it didn’t really hit me till it was my sweet little girl turning eyes, and becoming more interested in looking pretty all the time. All that to say, I agree with you wholeheartedly, but prepare the boys too. Their sister won’t stay little for long. They need to learn to guard each other, as well as close friends who may end up, one day being a family member :D

  411. “How ‘Modest Is Hottest’ Is Hurting Christian Women” by Rachel Held Evans– http://www.christianitytoday.com/women/2011/december/how-modest-is-hottest-is-hurting-christian-women.html
    and the website “Defeating The Dragons” http://defeatingthedragons.wordpress.com
    covers EXACTLY what is wrong with articles and opinions like this one. The modesty debate is always focused on women and dress, as opposed to both genders and states of mind over attire. The modesty debate has long been a trojan horse for outright chauvinism and it’s sad that more Christian women don’t pick up on that.

  412. as the mother of a daughter, I am HORRIFIED by this blog post and I pray my daughter will one day find a man raised by a woman who has actually taught her sons to respect woman, rather than one like you who teaches her boys that only certain kinds of girls are worthy of respect. shame on you. do you understand the horrible rape culture we live in? do you understand how you are contributing to it? shame on you.
    ten to one your sons have secret online accounts. You’d likely be shocked by what you’d find in them

  413. I came across this blog post because it was posted on a friend’s Facebook feed. I was so utterly disgusted that I felt compelled to respond. As a girl who attended Christian middle and high school, I spent years of my life being told that my body was evil and sinful because men/boys could not help but look at it. It seems that many Christians like you believe that these “boys are visual, boys will be boys, boys and girls are different, girls should know to cover up” tropes are just a given, just facts of life. Unfortunately, these ideas have much larger and more dangerous implications. When we teach our sons that it is girls’ responsibility to command respect, not our sons’ own responsibility to respect women, we are teaching them that there are girls/women out there who don’t deserve respect. We are teaching them that some girls are “asking” to get date raped. We are teaching them that a teenage girl who dares have sexual desires is bad and deserves to be shunned and bullied, whereas the boys who have these desires are “just being boys.” I would urge you, as a mother, to teach your sons to respect women, not to teach them that women are evil and need to be shunned for having breasts. I know that as a parent, it is your first instinct to protect your boys, but you need to teach them how to behave with integrity and not blame women for their own sexual desires and behaviors. I have no doubt that your sons have seen scantily-clad women by now, either at school, on TV, in movies, or on internet pornography. (Yes, no matter how much you think you’ve protected them, I can guarantee that your teenage sons have viewed pornography at some point already.) You can’t guard them from sexual images 24/7. And when they become adults, you won’t be there to guard them, either. How will they deal with their sexual urges when you’re not there to supervise them? By blaming the women in their lives, as you’ve taught them to? You are teaching your sons (and daughter) a very dangerous lesson. Do you think Jesus would agree that women are responsible for the sins of men? Or do you think he sees us all as equals in sin and worthy of forgiveness? You have a lot to think about, and I hope you do.

  414. And in this post, she has images of her sons half dressed. I understand they’re beach pictures, but c’mon…in THIS post?! Why is is appropriate for her sons to show their abs, but not their high school female friends to take fully clothed pictures bra-less. Gimme a break!

  415. Great for spreading the moral values and dignity… but why don’t they apply to your sons? Is posting pictures of teenage boys in bathing suits not the same as posting pictures of teenage girls in bathing suits?
    If you are going to be judgement and hypocrisy usually go hand and hand.

  416. I appreciate that as a mother of teenage boys you are aware and sensitive to the material they see. You’re clearly a great mom, and I really respect that! Bravo.

    I was a little offended, however, that you placed the emphasis on the young girls. It’s very sad to me that we live in a culture that can blame ladies for causing trouble and problems that they have no control over.

    I have not seen the images, and perhaps if I were the mother of the girls in the pictures I would be embarrassed and ask them to remove them! But maybe…maybe you should tell your sons that young girls, in whatever clothes they choose to wear, should not be judged solely on their appearances.

    And for your daughter- Maybe you can remind her that you love her. And that her self-worth is not being judged (by you or anyone) based on every picture she posts. Because if I grew up in a household where a group dominated by boys sat down and judged pictures of people, who probably look and think a lot like me, I would feel like a major outcast and disappointment.

  417. Congratulations on your hyper-Christian judgement and threat to exclude people who do not share your mis-guided values. I feel bad for your children. This is the worst kind of pseudo-morality that keeps people ostracized from humanity. Well done.

  418. I too am a mother of all boys, but unlike you, I don’t try and control my sons raging hormones by trying to control someone else’s daughter. Stick with teaching your boys about real beauty and leave the modesty patrol to the Taliban.

  419. What if instead of teaching our daughters that it is their responsibility to make sure men don’t objectify them, we just cut out the middleman and teach our sons to not objectify women? The attitudes expressed in this article are regressive and irrational. Blaming the way girls dress for the way men act just enforces outdated patriarchal attitudes in which men govern the way women act and think.

  420. The way it is, yes, you have good intentions of telling young girls to have ‘high morals’ and to respect themselves, but having it coming across like this, it’s restraining them. Your sons are lovely and seem like lovely young lads, but if you expect a girl to have high morals, then it should be the same for guys too. But if you think that girls and only girls should keep themselves covered up and be less ‘sexy’ then that is sexualising girls, and that is the ideals that are still around today. All this is building up into something that will effect that girl in the future, and god forbid she’s out and about, a guy keeps catcalling her and god knows what else, that will truly effect her all because, SHE was expected to be subordinate to her male counterpart. While he might go around in nothing but a pair of shorts, she is expected to keep her shorts to a ‘reasonable’ length and her shirt ‘modest’. So teach both genders to respect themselves and others, not just girls covering up, posing less sexy, or whatever else, to stop boys from having ‘compromising’ thoughts.

  421. First off I have to say BRAVO Mrs. Hall. As a mom of 6, 4 boys and 2 girls I could not agree more with your post or your pictures….I know you said you did not put any thought into your pictures but I would argue that you could have, just to show that you are not over the top and freaked out by normal harmless photos of kids dressed in totally acceptable swim suits. It is not those totally normal vacation/ fun pics you are referring to. If those pics upset any parents then they sure better not let their kids go to the beach/ pool in the summer or to many public schools for that matter (dress codes in schools today are a joke). I loved the article…what troubled me is the amazing number of parents who couldn’t get past the pictures…. i’m betting most of their kids are leaving the kinds of pictures you were talking about in your article… It just amazes me to end how many people now a days just look to pick a mother apart….no matter how wholesome, encouraging, and accurate her message may be.

    Thank you Mrs. Hall…. WELL SAID and you have a beautiful family…

  422. “And if your eye causes you to sin, gouge it out. It’s better to enter the Kingdom of God with only one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell.” -Jesus, as cited in Matthew 5:29 and also Mark 9:47

  423. I laugh at your attempt to control people around you. Your kids are extremely sheltered and that will effect them adversely as adults. What are you going to do next, install cameras in their rooms and bathroom to make sure they aren’t jacking off? I had a friend who lived in a family like yours, he wasn’t allowed to have a girlfriend till high school and he couldn’t play video games that were rated above E for Everyone. Know where he ended up right out of high school when he turned 18? He joined the Marines, got married and had 2 kids. This type of parenting is going to back lash on you somewhere in life, especially because they are teenagers. I understand that kids are growing up in a different time than you or I did, but that’s why you teach them the core values you want to instill when they are much younger. I feel bad for them that you control who their friends are, and are on over watch of their entire lives.

  424. Loved it! I Absolutely agree :) I do believe that you’ve had enough comment of how girls arent the only ones responsible for guys impure thought (even though they might be the cause of it) that i wont bore you by expanding on it.. There is nothing wrong with the pictures of your boys.. A young man in trunks or boardshorts is about the same as a young lady in a full swimsuite (and shorts)… IT IS NOT THE SAME AS A BRALESS GIRL IN HER BEDROOM!!! I mean seriously???? For those of you who read/ wrote the previous comment: the male equivalent of a girl in a bikini is a guy in a spedo… The boys in the pic are NOT scantily dressed. Thank you very much for the post :) You are a very good mother :) Keep up the good work!

  425. I think your sons should be saying this to the girls as an upstanding Male role model, Christian or not! Males as well as Females need to have self-control and respect for each other. Be it sexual, physical or emotional. Rather than you getting involved. I commend you on your concept but they as males need to standup, take responsibility and tell the girls they are not comfortable with these pictures and (they) will unfriend them if this continues. I think it comes across better to the girls (a sign of respect for Females) and does not embarrass your sons, in all this upheaval from everyone. Its all about self-control, respect and honoring each other as God intended us to do.

  426. Hmmm, I do find it interesting Mrs Hall was complaining about scantily or provocatively dressed young girls on her son’s FB, but she has a picture of her sons posing on the beach, shirtless and flexing?? And she doesn’t think that is a stumbling block to young teen girls??? I think there is a bit of hypocrisy here…but that’s just my opinion.

  427. Self-esteem, and the ability to stop and think of your best and highest good for just a minute in this lightning-quick Internet world, is what this post is REALLY about.

    It is sad to see posts l like the one above, from Ms. Salgado, for example. Open-hearted dislike is rooted in something in her–what could it be? Possibly a respect for self-expression, even if the self is expressing a dramatic need that looks repugnant to some people.

    Mistakes, corrections, forgivenesses: all are available, but also available is the ability prevent a mistake in the first place. The method for doing this is time–pausing to think about an action–and then watching to see the consequences.

  428. I liked your message, but am saddened by some of the comments… I agree that you should teach your sons to deal with our hyper sexualized world, not barricade them from it. One day they will be exposed to it full force, and if you haven’t made them ready, you may not like the decisions they make. However, to the commenters who talk about sexuality and sexually charged thought as though it is somehow evil, or unpure… you are missing the point of attraction and sexuality in general. Our bodies are wired to find others attractive, with the goal of reproducing and furthering our species. The idea that thoughts (even without actions) are wrong is ludicrous. And there are many people who have seen scantily clad women or men and thought – oh, look at that person. And then gone on about their day. Just because someone is half-naked doesn’t mean you have to care – or even remember it. That being said, a person who posts pictures that are clearly designed to be provocative likely has a self-esteem issue that would benefit more from loving guidance than blocking.

    Best of luck to you and your family.

  429. I was not offended by the first photo of the Hall family, because I found it to be mocking the poses she was referring to in the article, not trying to be hypocritical. That’s how silly “SOME” girls look trying so hard to be sexy. And I also didn’t feel that the message was suggesting girls be embarrassed by their body. Just the opposite! – Be prideful. Think of how you’ll feel about these pictures in 20+ years, when you have kids of your own – because they’ll still be out there. I enjoyed the article, until I got to all the comments, and I was reminded of our golden rule….if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything. Thanks for Sharing Mrs. Hall.

  430. Thank you all for taking the time to comment on this article.

    Last night there were about 300 comments (which I thought was a flood). This morning there were 1500 (a virtual sea, to me), and when I got home from work, there were over 4000 (a crushing tsunami). I’ve never had to approve comments, and don’t like to, but some had become exceptionally vulgar, and it became necessary in this case.

    Any comments that are vindictive, especially mean-spirited, vulgar, or threatening, will not be posted, and we’ll approve the others as time permits.

    Thank you for voicing your convictions with civility (and brevity) on this topic.

    Peace,

    Kim

  431. My mom forced me to read this even though I hate taking selfies and don’t have a social media profile that I use regularly that I could post pictures on if I wanted to, which I don’t. But I found it fairly offensive. I’m sorry, but I really didn’t make an impression on me, other than a bad one. I was scrolling through the comments and saw that some were concerned with the shirtless guys pictures, I didn’t even notice they were there until I scrolled back up to see what pictures they were talking about. yes, they probably should be covered, but I didn’t linger. I just thought, could you possible put it in a friendlier manner because it is offensive to some people, especially those of us who don’t take selfies. I hope you take this as good advice and not criticism, I really do mean the best and I’m not trying to offend anyone else.

  432. Life is all about choice’s, We all learn from our mistake’s and by watching other’s make them. This is a terrific forum to start fresh with a new out look. I have only one concern and that is the internet scammer, Scammers can steal, download ,share, send, receive anyone’s photo that is put on the web and ruin your image like I was reading about at the beginning of this page hack email ,credit , ect,ect, Parent’s teach your kid’s how to use the google browser set on images to copy and paste photo’s into the browser, and you can do the same thing with any email and retrieve a photo of who this email address belongs to some of the time. Identity theft is all part of putting yourself out there on the web to be destroyed by a bum, a thief and a liar you will never know. Pay attention parents if you don’t know how to do this with a photo or email to see who is chatting with your children while your back is turned , wake up and be aware. Thankyou Mark Priest./facebook and (Bear the river dog) facebook. Good day.

  433. Like many others, I saw this post and was very concerned. As the mother of both a son and daughter, I am very aware of how both genders will grow and develop, and I want to ensure that I raise two healthy, respectful children who become equally healthy and respectful adults.

    One way that I wish to do this is by ensuring that they both learn to treat members of both genders with adequate respect. My children are equal, I cannot favour one over the other, and so I make sure that what I tell one, I would be equally happy telling the other. I would not be happy telling my son that he must refuse to look at pictures of friends because they are posing in their pyjamas, and then block them to “remove temptation”.

    To me, that seems a shortcut, or lazy parenting. It seems tempting to “go to the source” and blame the girls posting photos, and you are indeed correct that it is a very inadvisable thing for girls to do (posting suggestive photos, that is, as that could spectacularly backfire on them in later life). However, what that approach does *not* do is to educate the teenage boys that no matter what wild and silly ideas people have in their teens (and we all know that teenagers are wont to act impulsively and rashly without considering consequences), that does not devalue them as a person, and to blame the other person for your own feelings and desires is morally very wrong.

    A good human (be they man or woman) has self-restraint. That is not learned overnight, and it is not learned by being told that members of the opposite sex bear the brunt of ensuring that no one finds them sexually attractive.

    Not only that, it is a highly unhealthy world view to see people who you might be sexually attracted to as having less worth. How will they view future spouses if they have learned from a young age that such a thing is wrong? How will they handle their own burgeoning sexual urges if they are taught that such feelings in themselves are inappropriate? Feeling ashamed of one’s sexual maturity and urges is a terrible thing, for it lingers past adolescence and even past wedding vows, and can seriously compromise a person’s most intimate relationship.

  434. I think it’s very ironic that you’re telling girls how the should appear, while you’re sons are half naked and flexing. And I think that being promiscuous in no way defines you’re character or intellect . If you’re sons don’t feel capable about their, uh hum, biological needs that’s a whole different problem, and not any girl’s. To tell you the truth, this post entry kinda made me upset. It seems kinda chauvinistic, saying that girls should alter they’re way of being because of your sons. I mean, I hate tweaking and boob pics and duckfaces as much as the next person, but shouldn’t they have the freedom to do so? Nothing’s regulating men’s personalities.

  435. This is one of the dumbest things I have ever had the misfortune to read. You won’t ALLOW your sons to see a picture of a girl in a vaguely sexual pose? Or *GASP* without a bra on? Do they watch TV? Do they browse the internet? I feel so sorry for the girls your boys will marry if they have the same values as you do. You’re not respecting women, you’re trying to police everyone’s body. If I want to take a picture without a bra on, boo hoo for you, that’s my choice. There’s no law saying I can’t slightly arch my back or walk around without a bra. It’s my body, not yours.

  436. I absolutely could not agree with you more! Kudos to you and your family. Sometimes on a daily basis it feels like we’re fighting an uphill battle. Hearing about others fighting the good makes it feel that much easier.

  437. Dear teenage boys,

    You cannot control other people, including teenage girls, so have the moral fortitude to click past images of girls in provocative poses. If you fall prey to loose morals, or whatever, that is your own fault. If they do the same, that’s their own fault. But remember they don’t control you either. So if a girl says she felt compelled to hook up with you because of your shirtless photo… not your fault. Hers. And if you do the same, not her fault. Yours. You control you. Others control themselves. Never pass something to someone else when it’s entirely up to you. You want an upstanding partner? Great. Don’t blame less-upstanding people for your choices.

    Love,

    Someone who works with teens of both genders every day.

  438. First off, its not telling girls to not be proud of their body. of course we want them to feel comfortable with it but its possible to be comfortable with clothes on, people do it everyday. Also, its your choice what you post therefore what you post is a reflection of you, so if you dont want people to think you are a “call for a good time” person, dont post picture that express such messages. And finally, guys goofing off in swim trunks are not the same thing as “scantily clad men”, scantily clad men are chip ‘n’ dale dancers or men in speedos, thats scantily clad, not what you would see at a youth group beach retreat.

  439. You could have gone in a good direction here — giving girls some solid advice about posting pictures and the audience it reaches. And you could have been funny. Instead, you codemn teenage girls for being, well, teenage girls, because it sullies the pure minds of your boys?!
    And I have to join the chorus singing hypocrisy here….

  440. I loved this article. With 4 young boys it gives me confidence in raising them to be great young men, respectful of those around them. Thank you thank you! And the pictures don’t bother me one bit-if they were of teenage girls they wouldn’t bother me either. There’s a big difference between a family having fun together and a person trying to make themselves as sexually appealing as possible. One I want my children to look for, the other I would rather they shy away from. Thanks again!

  441. All I can say is “wow”. As a mother of girls (21, 14 and 7) and a boy (12) and the aunt of nieces and nephews from ages 31 to newborn, I can just say that a lot of people missed the message on this one. There is a big difference between boys OR girls posting pictures in swimsuits in an appropriate setting and posting provocative pictures lying across a bed or wrapped in a towel. I, too, monitor my kids’ facebook accounts. If their friends are posting pictures that look like they could be in an adult magazine, IT’S INAPPROPRIATE. If the teenagers’ friends are posting pictures of drinking, smoking or the like, IT’S INAPPROPRIATE. It’s not about telling girls to be ashamed of their bodies. It’s about RESPECTING their bodies. Teenage girls are definitely trying to find their way, their own niche in life. Many don’t know how to go about finding it. They struggle with self-esteem issues and think that by posting provocative pictures, boys will like them. Well, they do like them….but not in the way the girl wants.
    Too often, these teens have inappropriate role models or no guidance at home. Sometimes just realizing that other people can see their posts and being told it’s not okay, can “open their eyes” so to speak. And although everyone would like to see equality between boys and girls, it’s just not so. In reality, boys can do a lot of stupid things and it’s funny or just “boys being boys”. If a girl makes bad decisions in her teen years, it stays with her the rest of her life. Sorry, folks, but that is just a fact.
    Cudos to Mrs. Hall for posting the article. It’s a mother’s point of view and I totally agree.

  442. The thing that upsets me most about this “article” isn’t the blatant misogyny, or even the hypocritical double standard. It’s that people take time to worry about other people’s sexuality at all. Montsanto is poisoning your children, people are starving to death daily, women are forced into sex slavery just as often, our world is run by corporations and war-profiteers, and natural, human sexuality is what you choose to concern yourself with? Sex is natural and healthy, repression is not. Just look at Ted Haggard. This makes me sad for the world.

  443. Why do we have to look at sex and sexuality as something inherently bad? Western dogma nothing more, and also extremely insulting to women. You have to adhere to the standards set by these men, your only hope of happiness is to find a guy to make you happy. It’s so funny how Christianity makes women hate women so much.

  444. I don’t know whether you’re still reading comments (I wouldn’t be if I were in your place), but I wanted to offer some support and encouragement. Based on the response, this is obviously a sensitive subject for a lot of people. Unfortunately, many are responding emotionally and defensively. People can only view and interpret information from the imperfect lens of personal experience and we often fill the gaps with our own issues and insecurities. It is unfair of readers to assign you intentions, meanings, and attitudes that you have not explicitly claimed as your own. I hope you will continue to write about the things that are important to you and to your family without regard of what others may think. Apparently unbeknownst to your critics, if they don’t agree, they don’t have to read it. They do have the option of spending their time more positively and productively by starting their own personal blogs and writing their own opinions about the things that matter to them. With all the negativity, you may want to consider just eliminating reader comments altogether, but of course that’s entirely up to you! :)

  445. I like the concept of sitting down with teens and discussing what they are seeing on their social media: Facebook friends, sites visited, etc. Having an “open door” keeps the dialogue flowing, and keeps parents in touch with what their teens are doing.

    Keeping that in mind, I think that the “zero tolerance” rule is limiting, and it doesn’t take into account that these are *young* users, just beginning to find their way in the world, and not necessarily understanding what they’re putting out there. Instead of blocking friends you find “questionable” or “inappropriate”, why not give the friends one chance to figure out that the things they are posting are not okay, and possibly damaging later on. You might save a teen some serious heartache down the line by getting involved now.

    My children are not on social media, being only eight and six. Computer time is limited, monitored and locked into safe browsers, but even now, they are getting the message from home: “If you wouldn’t want to see it on a billboard, DON’T put it online.” I can only hope this message is sinking in.

    Brevity is (obviously) not my strong point, but I thank you for putting the round-table idea out there; I’m guessing you helped a lot of families.

  446. Any young girl dressing provocatively has a back-story. Was she abused as a child? Is she rebelling against oppressive parents or trying to fit in with the rough-and-tumble crowd? Is she simply exploring her sexuality? She needs compassion and connection, not judgment or shunning.

    It’s easy to forget that Jesus spent time in the company of prostitutes, beggars, lepers, and tax collectors, among others. Shouldn’t Christians follow in his footsteps and tread everywhere with compassion and understanding? I know as parents we instinctually want to protect our kids from unsavory elements, but I think we’re better off showing them the world as it is and facilitating ongoing dialogue. Everyone, even a teenage exhibitionist, has the potential to teach us more about ourselves and our community. In this case, I think the author missed a golden opportunity to teach her boys an important lesson: no matter how someone dresses or acts, they deserve your respect and compassion. Boys, in particular, need to know that a provocatively dressed girl is inviting neither scorn nor predatory behavior.

  447. I have to agree with Kim! We all need to teach our children to be respectful of others. Respect is more than kind words. it is how we portray ourselves to the world. This goes out to boys, girls, men and women.

  448. I love what you said and as the mother of a beautiful, 12 yr old girl I applaud you. The pictures some girls are choosing to post on social media sites, scantily clad and posing seductively are MUCH different than pictures of your boys on an obvious family vacation at the beach. Carry on!

  449. I don’t like your message, and I am a mother of a son and a daughter.

    You are judging girls on what they wear and how they pose. You have decided they lack character and intelligence because they long to be sexy. We, as a society have to stop blaming girls and women for the actions of men and boys. I see the images the media puts out, I see the impossible standards of beauty women are “supposed” reach; the message is damaging to tweens and teens. To “slut shame” them? Wrong. Teach your boys to respect women, regardless of the clothes (or lack thereof) they wear.

    If your boys can’t get past the sexy picture, if they will only ever dwell on the fact that they saw “whomever” in only a towel, you failed them. Teach them that they should know the person, not the picture.

    You seem to demand a lot. You expect these girls to adhere to a code of conduct that is hypocritical. Teach your sons to respect women, regardless of how they dress. Teach your sons that women owe them nothing. I hope you do the same with their male friends’ pictures. Boys can be sexy too, and are posting “selfies” to show off their bodies. You delete them too right? Please remember, boys aren’t better than girls.

  450. I don’t think she is in any way saying that women need to be ashamed of their bodies, she’s actually saying quite the opposite. Her point was that women need to be proud of their bodies and treat them with value, not as something to show off to everyone. If you had something precious you would want to protect it, not put it out in the open for everyone to see. And the pictures of her sons are with the entire family, not them posing and taking a picture by himself, of himself to show off to the world. I’m sure she wouldn’t approve of her sons taking a provocative picture and posting it online, just like I’m sure she wouldn’t block a girl for having pictures with her family on the beach together. Great post.

    Proverbs 11:22 As a ring of gold in a swine’s snout,
    So is a lovely woman who lacks discretion.

  451. Congrats on putting what a lot of us are thinking eloquently and with respect.

    I am the mother of a 17yo daughter and 9yo daughter. I, too, monitor my teen’s social media and we talk extensively about the type of message you want to send and how easily it is to send the wrong one, even if you may not mean to (benefit of the doubt ;)

    As I see my 9yo emulating my elder daughter and her friends, it is more important to me than ever that me as a parent, and part of the global community of parents raising a generation of kids growing up with cameras and videocameras in their hands, we are educating our kids on these important issues.

    Cheers!
    Natalie @nat_rea on Twitter

  452. After reading several dozen comments here, I am astounded by how many people have a false notion of what true modesty is. While there are pharisaical sects of Christianity out there which wholly blame Woman for not wearing what is “Lots, loose, and long,” these are the exceptions. True modesty is practiced in love: love and respect for God, love and respect for one’s neighbor, and love and respect for one’s self. True modesty is not shameful or ashamed. Someone practicing Christian love also acts kind and gracious to all in real life and also on blog posts and comments.

    That being said, I appreciated your thought-provoking article. Perhaps more fitting pictures could have been selected. Also, I believe the audience scope should be much larger, encompassing all ages. People who left their teen years ago are sometimes guilty of such immodest conduct. Holiness is a lifelong pursuit. All our actions, from how we dress and walk to how we listen to our children, from how much time we spend online to what we ingest should be done to the glory of God (“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” I Cor. 10:31 ESV). Remarks such as, “That’s just the way our culture is,” sound like a cop-out.

  453. I Think this is a wonderful post! I do think it goes both ways, boys listing shirts to show abs etc. But an innocent picture is different. even a girl in a bikini that is not in a sexy pose is ok to me. The pictures of The boys in the post is FINE, they are not sexual in any way come on people.

  454. I find this entire post AND response thread fascinating! I read your gracious response, and understand that your normal audience is not the entire Internet, but I think that’s a great lesson for the women you are addressing, yourself, and your sons. Even when something is innocuously posted, it can and may be seen by anyone, unless you filter your posts for friends only. This leaves you (as a writer, photo subject, or general poster) open to people of all walks of life, with all sorts of opinions. Some will question and challenge you to expand your beliefs and horizons, some will know exactly what you mean, and some will simply be creepy. For children of any age, it is important to teach them modesty and self control. To me, the 2 biggest things that stand out to me are:
    1. The above referenced lesson that the Internet is a far wider audience than a poster may realize
    2. The point others have made; to raise men of integrity, teach them not to avoid all bad, but how to successfully overcome the pressures they may feel from peers, society, our just impulse. THAT lesson will outlast the situation and help shape them.

    Best of luck to you and your beautiful family.

  455. I wish that someone had made a post like this when I was younger. Not only would it have inspired girls to respect themselves, but it would have given me hope that decent guys actually do exist. This is very well written and I applaud you. I’m sharing it everywhere I can right now!

  456. AMEN im a teenage girl my self and i notice alot of pictures like that and just saying girls it gets you no attention except bad. You want some guy to get you pregnant by 16? Well thats what pictures like that say.

  457. This is refreshing. And I agree it is encouraging to a mom of girls, that their are moms of boys who are trying to help them stay pure. I can’t believe anyone would defend the girls in their towels being unable to “express” themselves. Come on! Ridiculous! If my girls ever pulled that, they would be finding their phones or cameras in the pool! I love the idea of a family social media review and would love to impliment that once my kids are old enough to spend time on the computer in these realms. I have preschoolers now. Hopefully by then, some of the parent controls will catch up a little bit…

  458. You’re talking about girls covering up while you have the header photos in this article of your children in their swimsuits? Not to be rude but doesn’t that seem a little… ironic?… for the article? Don’t get me wrong, I loved this article and being a girl myself, I have noticed a trend in my girl friends posting photos similar to the ones you’ve described and I think it’s just a little weird myself. While boys may look at girls in their swimsuits in a specific way, it could do the same for some girls seeing boys in their swimsuits. You have a handsome bunch of boys and a beautiful daughter but the fact that you’re complaining about people showing too much skin and then you post photos of your family in their swimsuits just strikes me as kind of… Hypocritical I guess.

  459. Hey Kim. Good thoughts, very thought provoking and well written. Don’t let it get you down, we all have a lapse in judgement sometimes. The pictures probably should not have been added to this story, but maybe this could be a lesson in forgiveness. Possibly if a girl proves she has cleaned up her act you could give her a second chance to friend one of your boys. I feel for you with all the negative comments, when actually, I loved what you had to say. I have a daughter and a son and can see it from both sides. Blessings…

  460. “Did you know that once a male sees you in a state of undress, he can’t ever un-see it? You don’t want the Hall boys to only think of you in this sexual way, do you?”

    OK, that’s ridiculous. You need to raise your sons to respect people as people, regardless of what they’re wearing or not wearing. My husband has seen me naked a million times, and he still respects me as a whole person, not just as a sexual being. I would hope you would say the same about your husband?

  461. I think your post was written from your heart as a mother and is beautiful. Young girls need to understand their worth is more than a picture and their value is more than a boy’s opinion. They need to be surrounded by people who affirm their beauty and gifts from God on an ongoing basis while they are trying to figure out who they are. There are enough outlets telling them who they “should” be by worldly standards.

    Thank you for this post and for trying to raise your own boys into men. Their future wives and families will appreciate all of your hard work.

  462. Well thought out and presented. I agree.
    I am a “very” former teenage boy, the father of a “semi-very” former teenage boy and the father of a beautiful daughter. Love to be a fly on the wall during these family discussions. That’s got to put some zing in the day. *smile*

  463. Hi,
    To those who are commenting on the semi naked boys, you are right they are wearing board shorts (not towels, or pjs), and they are in their natural habitat, the beach (not the bedroom or bathroom), both which has a door for good reasons.
    As the mother of a teen girl and a teen boy, I like what you have to say :-)
    Tina

  464. Honestly as a teenage girl I am happy to read this. I do, however, wish I could talk to your boys and know their opinion on it. I do hope their heart is set the way that you believe. I know I have sent or post pictures that I should not have and have actually stopped doing those things. I thank you that you have made this apparent to others!

  465. I find this article very disheartening. People should not be held accountable for thoughts and actions of others–women are beyond their bodies, men are beyond their urges. This leads to the relentless shaming and body issues in today’s culture. Instead of putting a temporary band aid on the issue, deal with it directly.

  466. Amen to this!! I am so grateful to finally come across someone who thinks this way!! I loved what you said! You go girl! I am actually a teenage girl myself (15) and I have started my own blog called, “Love To Be Ladylike.” My intentions of my blog were to get the word of modesty out there. I honestly didn’t think anything of your pictures. I think the people giving you a hard time abut it, were missing your true point of the post. I understand where they are coming from, and I think both boys and girls can be modest, but like you said, it is way different. I hope to be as good as a mom as you are, to stand up for your kids like this! May God bless you! Thank you:)

  467. Kim, I’m in total agreement that young women (teenage girls) should be careful what they post on their social media accounts. So should young men (teenage boys) as they often post inappropriate photos of themselves too these days. Furthermore, I’d go so far as to say that all teens be careful of everything they post. Some of the humor in their status messages may very well come back to bite them in a few years when they venture out into the world looking for a job post-college (or even post high school). Of course, perhaps every person of every age and of both genders should be careful what they post in social media as I see A LOT of inappropriate things posted, from sexual “selfies” to hateful and hurtful diatribes about other people for all the world to see. Perhaps I’m overreaching here, but I think we should caution EVERYONE on social media to be careful of the message(s) they are conveying to the rest of the world. Then again, perhaps it’s just too easy and satisfying to scapegoat females, especially young ones entering in their sexual prime. What say you?

  468. We need more Mom’s and Dad’s to be teaching their girls to have self-esteem and learn that is not the way to receive attention but we also need Parents like you to be teaching their Son’s to treat girls with respect! Thank you for your post I hope this gets across to even one teen girl to make a difference in her life! By the way I didn’t think your pic was displaying any sexual content! The are at the beach for pete’s sake people!

  469. nice try… and i agree that many go too far in what they choose to share (both boys and girls). but you are fooling yourself if you think that your walton-like family sharing dinners are giving you a complete perspective. ask your sons to share their “private” twitter and snap chat accounts and report back!

  470. Honestly, I thought this was pretty stupid. Your boys are half naked in these pictures, and teenage girls should be responsible for what they put online. They shouldn’t need to have somebody else’s parent telling them what to do, as they are old enough to recognise what is considered sexual and what is not. It is their own choice what pictures they post, and therefore their own problem. I encourage you to have your own children unfriend them, but you don’t have much right to tell them what to do.

  471. Perhaps you should have directed your letter to both genders. I monitor my daughter’s social media…and YES she has made mistakes, big ones…but the COUNTLESS INAPPROPRIATE PICTURES she received from boys was over the top..and the CONSTANT BADGERING FOR INAPPROPRIATE PICTURES a crime. The most unfortunate part is when all the cards were laid on the table, the boys faced minimal or no consequences….so sad that some still believe the girl is always at fault. This is not a teen age girl problem…it is a teenage problem!

  472. And from the view of this mother….this is why I always randomly asked my daughters as they grew up to see their cell phones and I would always have their passwords…so I could see what they were doing! That is what I like to call…Good Parenting! :)

  473. An awesome post. Totally made your point and it was a good one. The pictures of the boys though defeats the purpose. Its not okay for girls to be in bathing suits/bikini, but it is okay for the boys to be in swim trunks or topless? How is that fair? I`d say its a bit hypocritical. It can NOT be okay for one gender and not the other. A boy may think about a girl in a sexual way after seeing pictures of her in some sort of undress but the same goes for girls too. You should think about that :)

  474. I appreciate and agree with your posts and your willingness to put your self out there as “human” but with a willingness to receive correction (shows where your heart is but ultimately our Father knows where it is). Unfortunately many will not read the 2 responses you posted as I know I can only read on for so long but was curious what your response would be so searched for the word “given” to find any of your responses. This scripture came to my mind and I wanted to share it with you as a reminder…
    John 15:18-21 “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.19If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. 20Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also.21They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the one who sent me.
    Keep walking and pursuing Him and allowing Him to guide your heart. Were all on a journey as believers we will never arrive until that day He returns or calls us home. However we still have a responsibility to guide others in the Spirit and in love and be willing to be guided (Galations 6:1).

  475. Dear Mrs. Hall,

    Why do you believe that a fully clothed teenage girl not wearing a bra is more “scantily clad” than three teenage boys whose attire is tantamount to boxer shorts? Would a bikini photo of the girl have been appropriate? What if the girl had been wearing a bra but no shirt? It is a deeply ironic double standard for you to include photos of your bare-chested sons in an article about how a teenage girl is somehow jeopardizing their moral wellbeing by wearing a shirt without a bra. If you honestly believes that only teenage BOYS have raging hormones, you need to either pick up a couple of textbooks on psychology and anatomy or attend a Justin Bieber concert.

    Your friend,

    Mrs. Lewis

  476. I really appreciate what you have to say to young ladies here, but I agree with all the others about posting pictures of your boys without any shirts on.

    I am raising my daughters to appreciate the man for WHO he is on the inside, NOT for what he looks like from the outside.

    Young women DO notice bare chested photos and they DO comment. To protect their purity, they do NOT need to see or linger over these photos either!

    Thanks for your post and please seriously consider our input.

  477. I notice there are many comments re this post, some highly critical of beach pix of the writer’s boys. I think context is extremely important and pix of boys in long swim trunks topless on the public beach while horsing around are not equal to — not the same as — pix of boys or girls taken in provacative poses to emphasize lack of proper underwear. Please don’t be confused about this issue. Please don’t pretend you don’t get the difference

  478. Thank you! We are using your post as an example in our youth group on posting. There are too many of our good, Godly kids who don’t understand the deep reprocussions to themselves and their chaacters in posting things that are acceptable to our society but don’t adhere to the guidelines of Christianity. As a mother and a youth group leader who desires to protect and guide our youth away from the things I’ve put myself through growing up as a young woman in our culture, I admire your approach and appreciate your perspective. Your boys are beautiful, and it’s parents like you that give me hope my little girl just may see some young men with integrity when it comes time for her to begin the difficult stage of being a teenager. Thank you for your honor, and for raising young men of Christ who desire to withstand the sexual demands of our world today. May you be blessed in the adventures and journey of parenthood, I hope to have as much success as you seem to be having!

  479. Girls like this give other girls bad rep, but they still don’t deserve “public shaming”…especially if you know them personally. The right and loving thing to do would be to address them privately.

  480. Good article, I certainly want my two young ladies to behave like ladies especially on a social networking site. But I still think there are valid points about the boys in the suits. Our culture has made this so, but what do you think?

  481. Kim I don’t want to deluge you with yet another comment, but I agree that pics at the beach of family are completely different than the pics you were talking about. Now, if your boys had been with their shorts pulled down, underwear showing, bare chested in their bedrooms, trying to look sexy, it would have been a different story. I am sure if it had been a family of girls, posting in their one pieces with their brother, you wouldn’t be “sending them off Hall island” it’s NOT the SAME! I’m sure when your daughter gets old enough to be on facebook, you’ll continue your family meetings and BOYS who are posting “sexy” pictures from their bedrooms will be dropped too! It’s not a double standard. But the reason I felt compelled to post is I feel many are missing what I consider to be the most important part of your post- that as parents we have not only the right but the responsibility to see what our kids are up to, online, at school, on TV etc… we can decide what morals and standards are appropriate for our kids, our family, but the point is, WE have to be involved. I completely disagree with the comment that says your kids have secret accounts, I doubt they do, mine didn’t. When we are open and honest and trusting and respectful with others, we get the same back, even when they are our kids!

  482. Is it an ironic statement that you chose to post pictures of your half naked male children on a post about girls posting sexually suggestive pictures? Or, are you saying that girls aren’t enticed by seeing their male peers showing off their bodies? While I agree with what you are saying in your post, I am confused by the message that you sending regarding boys vs. girls; that is not OK for girls, but it’s ok for boys….

  483. I think it is absolutely ridiculous to say that the shirtless pictures of boys are provocative or inappropriate. society has long accepted the fact that boys can go shirtless in public. I guess the question your daughters should ask themselves is, ‘would I walk down a crowded street like this’…I mean, really. those boys are not showing anything that should be considered explicit.

  484. I don’t think that it’s a “double standard” for you to post a picture of your sons at the beach – it’s totally different than a girl posing provocatively in her bedroom. Don’t need to remove the pictures in my opinion.

  485. And this is how you make a post classy and informative. I have a daughter of my own, and trust me I fret over how easy it is to put anything on the web anymore. It was nice to see a parent who isn’t a tyrant, but is guiding her Hall men in the right direction, it certainly gives me hope for future suitors of my daughter!

  486. I love the picture of your boys! Nothing sexual about it! In my first glance, I saw a family of children (actually three brothers) being kids and acting like they are big he-men! Especially the youngest one! Double standard? Maybe, if you think too hard about it, but kids need to learn values and self-respect. And it seems you are doing everything in your power to teach your children that. Good for you!

  487. Mrs. Hall, I am so sorry that there are so many people that felt the need to twist, misconstrue, and attack your message. I am not a perfect person nor do not pretend to be so. I cannot say that I have always made good choices in my life and on FB. As an adult I do know right from wrong. My parents did their very best to teach us and did extremely well in my opinion. I am pleased to see that you are doing as my parents did. The sad fact is that there are parents out there that don’t want to take the time be involved with their children and would rather leave the lessons to be taught by others. I work in a health institution that sees so much abuse of children, drugs, etc. There is bullying and suicide. It breaks my heart that our children feel the need to go to such lengths just to get a little attention. I have to say that I deeply fear for the children of the future. I wish people would take your message in the spirit it was meant. I don’t need to say that the beach pictures of your kids are in good taste because you and I know they are. If their female friends were on the beach in bathing suits having a good time as kids should, would be of no objection either. It is a completely different circumstance that you wrote about. All of the stone throwers know it. They would much rather throw stones then go talk to their children. I pray for them and their children.

  488. Love the post – and it is something we regularly remind our daughters about how they are seen and perceived online. And we parents also see the pictures that the boys send to the girls – same goes for them..

  489. Men of integrity don’t allow contrived photos to influence their judgement of others; they see deeper than that. Understanding the difference between perception and reality takes a lot of training and this skill will be invaluable once they leave the island home for the big world where reality is not filtered. Will they be ready? Is avoidance the best approach when the issue is unavoidable?

  490. The picture on the beach is of three brothers in waist to knee swim trunks and one 8 year old sister on the shoulders of one of her brothers………..OMG!! How scandalous!!

    Comparing this photo to the one of ‘the bedroom girl’ is ridiculous and you know it. It’s like comparing apples and oranges.

    I think Kim Hall has presented excellent parenting here. It’s a lesson that can be used by parents or guardians of all or no faith………….Jews, Moslems, Christians and atheists.

  491. I’m not even sure if you’re reading these comments any longer–there are so many! :) I posted my issues with this blog yesterday–they had nothing to do with the swimsuit picture but with the lesson you’re inadvertently teaching your boys about women. (Basically what hundreds of other people have said–that you should urge girls not to post such photos out of respect for themselves not bc they might make a teenage boy lust after them) I just wanted to let you know that I didn’t mean any of my criticism to be taken as an insult and none of it was meant to be hurtful. I truly truly hope you will open your heart and mind (maybe you already have) and think about what all these people are saying about the lesson we teach young men and women in today’s culture– that men are superior, yet unable to control themselves, and that women are inferior yet somehow responsible/to blame for every lustful thought/action men have toward them (warranted or not). Having known more than one female in my life who has been sexually assaulted (and one of them even beaten) and then basically called a slut (by most everyone–including the police officer that was supposed to be investigating) because “did you see how she was dressed?” or “she was so drunk she probably asked for it” has opened my eyes to the way women are perceived and treated. No matter what a woman is wearing, how she is posing, how much she is drinking, etc–she still deserves respect and is never “asking for it”. I beg of you to re-think this ritual of judging young girls based on their clothing/poses and then unfriending them. Many many young women have the insecurities they do and the need to please men because of terrible, abusive traumatic experiences earlier in life. (Think I’m exaggerating? Look at the statistics–1 in 3 women.) These girls need our love and our prayer and they need men who respect them as a human being no matter what message they might be trying to send on facebook. I can tell you have some sweet, outstanding young sons and I hope you use this criticism to educate them on the sad reality girls/women face in today’s world in hopes that they can make a difference. :) Thanks for reading (I hope) :)

  492. There has always been and will always be a habit of women who are past their prime to find ways to complain about the sexuality of younger women.
    Yes, my mommy is upset that you are not wearing enough clothes….she dosent like our music either
    …and thinks Elvis shouldnt shake his hips like that.

  493. well, it didn’t take the naysayers long to pounce on this involved mother. You all need to get a grip on yourselves. There is a huge difference between a young girl posting photos of herself taken in her bedroom half naked and a bunch of young boys mugging for the camera on a public beach. I would say that this mom pays attention to what her sons are looking at on the internet and that you all should do the same for your kids: sons and daughters alike. How many stories have you read lately where a young woman poses on FB and turns up missing or worse because of the pictures she posts? Twice this summer in Maine … one turned up dead and the other was missing for days and thank God was found safe. I am often shocked by what a young girl will think is okay to post on FB. And since young girls bear the brunt of their misspent youth far more often than young boys (teen pregnancy, etc…) I think the article is timely and on point.

  494. Here are my thoughts on this post, being the mother of a nearly 10 year old little girl. From day one I have taught her to love her body and respect her body, but even more so, make sure others respect her body. This post you put up is tragically, well, tragic. I get your point on some levels but not on everything and disagree with much of what you say. First off, a man should be taught to respect a woman and view the inside no matter what the outside looks like. A woman can be “sexy/pretty/gorgeous/lovely/charming” with a full burka on, just as someone can be modest and have the utmost high standards for her body and those