Our family just returned home from a wonderful mini-vacation to an indoor waterpark. It was great to get out and do something fun during these long, cold Michigan winter months. However, I can’t stop thinking about something that I want to get off my chest; or rather, that I want to keep on my chest.
As I walked around the indoor family waterpark, I found myself giving a lot of thought as to how women choose their swimsuits. (Perhaps it is because I am now raising a teenage boy and am increasingly aware of the temptations he is going to be faced with, or because I have a tween girl to whom I am trying to teach modesty.) I was surprised at the number of women wearing small bikinis. I don’t just mean two piece swimsuits. I mean tops that don’t cover all the top, and bottoms that don’t cover all the bottom.
These women had young children that they were inevitably going to have to bend over to pick up or lean down to help with a life jacket. They were getting on and off tubes, walking up stairs, and going down waterslides. I can’t imagine that their choice of swimwear was the most functional for those types of activities. I would have been constantly conscious of whether or not the material was sufficient to keep all of me covered. As it was, the swimsuit I wore was purchased when I wasn’t nursing, and as a result I kept tugging up on the front and using my 5 month old as a “modesty panel.”
So, as I said, I began questioning what motivates women in their choice of swimwear. I may be wrong, but after I thought and thought, I could only come up with one reason a woman would wear a tiny bikini to an indoor waterpark. She isn’t going to get a tan, so she must want to show off her body. She must want men to be attracted to her and women to envy her. Almost all of these women were with a significant other, so what she’s advertising isn’t for sale (I hope), and since this park attracts mostly families, most of the men or teenage boys aren’t buying (I hope).
Before you think I am just jealous that I don’t have the kind of body to do a suit like that justice, let me refute. I did at one time, and I still didn’t wear suits like that, and most of the women wearing them had normal post baby bodies, not supermodel-works out for a living bodies.
It just makes me uncomfortable. I am uncomfortable for teenage boys who have to learn very early to avert their eyes, and I am uncomfortable for honorable men of integrity who have to continually avert their eyes while trying to enjoy a day with their families. I mean, if I am a completely heterosexual female who can’t help but notice the many body parts hanging out and flailing around, what is it like for a healthy male?