Blog Gone Viral
One woman’s blog made headlines after she took to social media claiming she was booted from her prom because her dress was too short and her dance moves too sexy. Oddly enough, the main complaint about her dress code came from chaperoning dads, leaving many to question whether or not the decision was just. As details unfold the debate continues, and many are left to wonder why this teen has been over sexualized and stigmatized.
Let’s go over the facts and you can decide for yourself.
Clare, Virginia Teen
As Clare got ready for prom she was more excited than she had ever been for a school dance. After all, she had been preparing for months; finding a dress, getting the perfect shoes to match, and anticipating the night’s events. However, when she got there she quickly realized this memory was not going to be a fond one as some parents were on a mission to “teach her a lesson.”
As most females know, shopping for a prom dress is an exciting experience that can take months if the right one doesn’t pop up right away. Especially for Clare, as she is on the taller end of the scale. Finding something that worked within the dress code took forever, but she finally did it– and it was gorgeous. Up until the night of the dance, she checked to make sure her dress was long enough, ensuring nothing would happen to ruin her night.
An Excited Couple
Clare and her boyfriend/prom date James were all dolled up, ready for their spectacular night. They weren’t going to the dance alone but in a larger group of friends who were ready to get their groove on. Knowing that her dress was short, she knew she wasn’t going to do any exaggerated dance moves and risk it sliding up.
Fun At A Price
Their prom was located at the local Methodist church, with parents and teachers as chaperones. It wasn’t free, though. Each ticket cost $25 and they used their hard earned money to purchase them. As soon as they arrived, they ran into trouble.
Chaperone Ann Duncan quickly approached Clare, demanding that her dress was too short. Clare fired back, “What is the rule,” knowing full well what the dress code was and that she was in fact, obliging. Mrs. Duncan knew the dress code as well, sticking to her guns demanding Clare’s dress was too short to even enter the dance.
But Clare wasn’t going to leave without putting up a fight.
Victory, For Now
Clare began to demonstrate that her dress was in fact, long enough. She had prepared for this party for months and she was going to get in, one way or another. Seeing that her fingertips were, in fact, longer than the dress, Mrs. Duncan had no choice but to let in her. But she did give her a stern warning.
Warning Clare that if she saw her dress riding up at any point, she was going to have to leave. Annoyed but glad the drama was over, Clare and her friends ran into the dance. There was great music, food, and everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves, dancing the night away. At first, it was everything she expected and more.
However, then, they noticed something odd.
They all noticed that the dance was overly chaperoned, specifically with dads. It seemed everywhere they looked they saw men lurking and watching intently. Clare and her boyfriend James even noticed that they were all staring at Clare specifically, making her uncomfortable.
The dads were positioned on a balcony, able to watch the kids from up above. Clare stated, “I think that it is sick and wrong that they assigned them to sit on a balcony above us and look down on us and single us out for our clothes or dancing.” When interviewed, Mrs. Duncan said she doubted that was the case, “It was very crowded. There were 500 kids there, so to be able to even say what they were looking at would be really difficult.”
More Bad News
Not only was she being watched by the male chaperones, but she was also being watched like a hawk by Mrs. Duncan. As soon as she talked to some of the parents, she headed over to Clare. She pulled Clare off the dance floor by her arm, dragging her into the hallway. She then proceeded to tell her that she had to leave, and the reason, was appalling.
The Real Reason
“It was right below her butt cheeks by the time I saw her,” Mrs. Duncan said. It was an incredibly embarrassing experience for Clare, and her friends couldn’t help but think there was another reason she was being kicked out–the oogling dads. Clare tried to defend herself by saying she wasn’t dancing inappropriately, but Mrs. Duncan wasn’t having it.
Clare Wasn’t Having It
“When the lady kicked me out, they said the dads had complained about my dancing and that meant that they had to have been watching me,” Clare remembered. She even noticed that she wasn’t the only one with a short dress,”When I got into the ballroom I laughed, because I was surrounded by girls in much shorter dresses then me.”
One Last Attempt
Clare’s boyfriend, James, tried to make a case for the couple. He mentioned that they had come in a large group, and if they were forced to leave, then the whole group was going to as well. With little care, the chaperones made it clear that it didn’t matter to them. In their eyes, Clare had broken the rules.
When Clare realized there was no way she was going to be able to persuade the chaperones to let her stay, she asked for a refund for the $50 they had spent on tickets. After all, if she wasn’t going to be able to enjoy the dance, why should she have to pay? But they told her they were only going to refund Clare’s ticket, not even her dates. This was getting outrageous, and Clare wasn’t going to be quiet about it.
She Had People On Her Side
On the way out, Clare even asked the security guard if he thought their decision was just, “I asked the security guy if my dress was compliant with the dress code and if he had noticed any inappropriateness in my behavior and he said he didn’t think I did anything to get kicked out but it wasn’t his call.” When she got home, she was upset and disappointment that she couldn’t enjoy prom like the rest of her classmates. It was time to take to social media.
Clare and her boyfriend posted a video online detailed what had happened to them, opening a discussion about whether or not the school was just in their decision. Many people agreed that Clare should have been kicked out, but just as many were on her side. Most of the outrage came from a specific comment Clare was appalled by.
“I was told that the way I dressed and moved my body was causing men to think inappropriately about me, implying that it is my responsibility to control other people’s thoughts and drives,” Clare shared. She went on to open up about why she thinks she was singled out, “I have long legs and I was wearing a sparkly dress, I didn’t look like most of the 13-15 year old girls there, I looked like a woman. I am so tired of people who abuse their power to make women feel violated and ashamed.”
Clare brought up some serious issues a lot of women have to deal with, “This is a message to the women who understand that sometimes it doesn’t matter how much you pin a dress, you’re still going to have cleavage show when you bend over,” Clare expressed. “Enough with the slut shaming,” she went on.
This Problem, Needs A Solution
She warns haters to think about whether or not their mentalities are apart of the problem and to ponder how they can instead be apart of a solution, “I’m not responsible for some perverted 45 years old dad lusting after me because I have a sparkly dress on. And if you think I am, then maybe you’re part of the problem.” She is still waiting for a full refund for her entire group, and has yet to be contacted by any of the chaperones who made the decision.