Earlier today, our New York City family adventure included a stop at the legendary Ricky’s Costume Shop, a warehouse containing the largest Halloween costume collection I’ve ever seen. It was impressive, and the kids got a kick out of all the disguises.
Chloe was particularly enthusiastic. At one point, she took me to see a costume that she would have liked for herself. I pointed out a couple of problems with it. The first being that it was a woman’s costume, not for a child. Second, it consisted of a bra and a nanoskirt. But because it was so tiny, Chloe probably thought it was for girls. When I told her the costume was too sexy for her, she said, “But Mom, I want to be sexy.”
WHAT?!?!?!? I didn’t have an immediate response to that. After a few seconds, I replied, “You’re too young to be sexy. You’re too young to even think about the word sexy. You are six years old and an adorable little girl. Sexy is for grown women.”
“Mom, what is sexy?” I breathed a sigh of relief. But then I realized I had another problem. How to explain sexy? For a fleeting moment, I considered giving her a quick tour of the XXX-rated accessory section in the store. OK, not such a great idea. Instead, I made a feeble attempt to define “sexy” in a way that would cause her to reconsider her aspirations.
My monologue was clumsy, at best, and went something like this: “Chloe, you don’t want to be sexy yet. Men like women to be sexy. Little girls are not allowed to be sexy (I didn’t mention the child beauty pageant exception). When you’re 30 you can be sexy. Besides, Santa Claus does not let his elves deliver presents to sweet little children wearing outfits like that.”