I had promised to go for her Confirmation dress the next weekend. But, here I am standing in a dress shop and browsing. A Mom and daughter, who are selecting a dress for her Sweet-Sixteen, are trying to decide between two dresses. The Mom attempts to allow her daughter to have the “final say;” but I can see her struggling. Clearly the daughter has decided on one of the dresses but obviously the Mom wants the other one. The daughter likes a dress that in my opinion is not age appropriate, but who am I to say? After all, next weekend, I could be in the same position when I attempt to allow my daughter to have the “final say” in her dress selection for her Confirmation. And that is exactly why I am here.
When did choosing a dress get to be so difficult? I remember bringing home three white dresses for my daughter’s First Holy Communion. Her only request was that when she twirled, the dress stood “straight out.” All three dresses had an acceptable length, sleeves, and were white – exactly what a First Holy Communion dress ought to be. So, her winning selection twirled exactly the way my daughter wanted and everyone was happy.
But, next weekend I will shop for the Confirmation dress with a 14 year old that now has exacting, distinctive taste that clashes with my own expectations of what she should wear. At least we have no issues on school days because the required uniform is fine by me. But, the Confirmation dress purchase looms ahead and promises to be very challenging. So forgive me that I am at the dress shop with the intent to have the sales-person show my daughter, next weekend, a selection of dresses that I have pre-approved.
One could say that I am sneaky and controlling but my parenting style’s first priority is to not disempower and break my daughter’s spirit. I am committed to her learning to make decisions. But, 14 year olds who want to look like 21 year olds going out to a club instead of to Confirmation need limitations. So, yes, I am here setting up the dress choices. However, my daughter will ultimately have the “final say.”
Let’s get some feedback on appropriate dresses for various ages and parenting styles. Share your thoughts!