February 11, 2014

Tweens, Makeup and The Meanest Mom Ever

That would be me. Meanest Mom Ever. Honestly, I wear my title with pride. I don't think parenting is about just giving our children whatever they want, whenever they want it. That isn't parenting. It's teaching children that they are royalty, in charge and we (mere mortals) should bow to them.

Um. No.

The Meanest Mom Ever has stood fast to the decision she made with the Meanest Dad Ever. No makeup. Chapstick - okay. Lightly tinted lip gloss - in moderation. But beyond that? Not happening. When I said something about our decision on Facebook some time ago, it launched quite a discussion. I didn't feel like I could fully explain myself in one of those little comment boxes so here you go.

Why my daughters (with the oldest at ages 10 & 12) won't be wearing makeup:

-- Most importantly, my reasoning rests in the Bible. I want my daughters to find their value in Jesus Christ, fully trusting that He loves them not for how they look, what they wear or who they know. I want them to strive for that gentle, quiet spirit. I don't want their focus and habit at this young, tender age to become outward or selfish. The flesh is already telling young girls to think of themselves first.  I want them to be able to fight that pull in their heart and be able to first focus on their heart attitude, their words to others and their relationship with the Lord. And if I have to stand up to fight for them until they can fight themselves, I will. Until we feel that they can wear makeup without it ruling over them, I remain the Meanest Mom Ever.

-- Society has been picking a fight with modest young ladies for years now. Wear this. Pout like that. Shorter. Tighter. Flirtier. It's a war zone, really. Have you ever scrolled through the Instagram or Facebook feed of a young lady? Their friends are pushing up and out everything they've got! I want to teach my girls from their young ages, to understand what powers are really at work here. Pride. Lust. Jealousy. Self Promotion. As we identify the real motivation behind their actions, what they are doing or promoting doesn't seem so exciting.

-- Going against the flow is hard. Being different is a challenge or everyone would do it! Standing up now, with my daughters, and teaching them why it's important to know how to be different is crucial to their health as young Christians. Makeup really is only the first wrung on the ladder. It's going to get so much harder. But if they can learn now how to stand against the pull of the pack, it will make the harder battles just a bit easier. At least that's my prayer.

-- And lastly... I think my daughters are gorgeous! I don't think they need make up and I don't want them to learn to look for every little blemish to cover up. I want them to learn that God made their face and it's just how He wants it - without all the paint.

There are cons to go along with all this. First, I don't want makeup to be the enemy. Because obviously, it's not. But we do have an enemy and I want my daughters to start understanding how he can use any little thing to derail us. Second, I want the opportunity to teach them how to wear makeup. But there's no reason that can't happen when they're 14 or 15 or even 16.

I don't have all the answers. I don't know when we will begin the makeup journey. But I don't need to know right now. For today, this is what we do and why we do it. How do you handle makeup and your tween or young teen?

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