Q&A: My Husband and Teen Sons Wear Nothing But Boxers at Home
Teen parenting expert Rosalind Wiseman on speaking to family members about inappropriate clothing.
Q. My husband and three teenage sons walk around in their boxers even when my 10-year-old daughter is in the room. The guys see nothing wrong with this, but I do. Who's right?
A. The mother of three teen boys must be respected within her home. Whether or not your daughter is uncomfortable, you are. Case closed. The men should put on at least a T-shirt and sweatpants. Spell out your needs to your husband privately, then approach your sons.
Remember that when you're talking to teen boys (and possibly husbands too) they won't get the message unless you're as direct as possible. Sit them down and say, "I love all of you dearly but you don't see me going around in my underwear. From now on I want you to have clothes on when you're outside your bedroom." If they don't honor your request, you have a bigger problem—they aren't taking you seriously. This is not acceptable and must be addressed directly by giving them consequences, because it's critical that everyone in a family always show consideration for one another.
Originally published in the November 1, 2010, issue of Family Circle magazine.