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Do You Make Sexy Halloween Costumes for Little Girls? Please Stop.

It looks like these little girls are going to a BDSM daycare. Is BDSM daycare a thing? Why don’t my sons tell me anything?

fatherly logo Opinion

Dear Costume Manufacturer,

It recently came to my attention, thanks to a survey conducted by the TODAY show, that parents are afraid of the proliferation of sexy Halloween costumes for little girls. And not just some parents, a full 60 percent of parents who took the survey. That’s a lot. But it’s probably, also, a low estimate. The other respondents were more concerned about sugar highs (a thing which does not scientifically exist) and cleaning up spooky shaving cream vandalism (because, priorities). I didn’t take the survey but I fall in the 60 percent because now I know this is an issue.

As a father of two boys, I will admit I was unaware of the problem. When I went shopping for Halloween costumes for my boys, I was essentially browsing racks full of overpriced pajamas (some with fake muscles sewn in), cloaks and masks. So complete was the coverage of these costumes, I would have been forgiven for thinking this year’s trend was “obscure the kid’s body to the point of obliterating their identity completely.” But then I saw this:

Let me ask, with all the respect I can muster: How did your research and development team settle on this idea? Did you use advanced data to determine that 7-year-olds are super into the 1990s goth classic Edward Scissorhands? Did this data further suggest that they were all going to “sexy” costume parties hosted by irresponsible older siblings working on becoming Instagram influencers? Or … wait. Did Johnny Depp put you up to this? Sounds like something he’d do. $30,000 a month in wine will do strange things to a man.

Why does the skirt need to be so short? Why the sexy choker and knee-high stockings? It looks like a little girl going to a BDSM daycare. Is BDSM daycare a thing? Why don’t my sons tell me anything? On second thought, I don’t want to know.

Speaking of, I’m shocked they failed to mention the primary-school strip clubs where this outfit is likely en vogue:

I’ve come to the conclusion these places exist because last I checked, police officers wore pants. Yeah. Even the policewomen. For real. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a cop of any gender wear a skirt. However, exotic dancers dressed as cops wear skirts (or so I’ve heard…). I mean, they don’t wear them for long, and only while dancing to Lil’ Wayne’s classic get-down “Mrs. Officer.”

Are you, dear costume manufacturer, under the impression that Lil’ Wayne is performing in the children’s room at public libraries now? Are you convinced he’s teaching kids to count one dollar bills part of a new STEM curriculum?

Maybe I’m overreacting. I should give you the benefit of the doubt. It’s possible you’re just coming to realize that the skills you developed designing the wardrobe for Dateline’s To Catch a Predator haven’t transferred to making awesome Halloween costumes. Maybe it’s time to find another field? I’m sure Harmony Corine will be making a sequel to Spring Breakers or something. That seems right up your proverbial alley.

That’s good news because you sure are bad at making Halloween costumes. I mean, you can’t even put together a solid kid’s witch costume without hiking the hem of the skirt up to the thigh and adding slinky fishnets. Let me remind you because apparently, you need it: These are children you’re trying to dress.

(Also, and here I speak from personal experiences, most witches don’t dress sexy. There was a period in my life during which I was friendly with many witches (I’m not being facetious, I used to live in Portland) and they favored a look prescribed by Steve Nicks by way of Doctor Marten.)

The only thing I can assume from these scraps of cloth you’ve strategically sewn together to call a “wolf costume” is that you’re trying to communicate to little girls that they can be whatever they want. Providing that what they want is also sexy. If they want to be an executive, they must be a sexy executive. If they want to be a bee, they must be a sexy bee (preferably goth).

I’m curious though — and not to get too meta — what if they want to be a children’s Halloween costume designer? Would they have to be sexy or would it suffice for them just to be fucking morons?

For the record, my boys are going as a wizard and a knight. Me? In a display of solidarity with young women, I will be going as a sexy nightmare serial killer. I think my neighbors are gonna love the look.

Patrick Coleman