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Boxers or Briefs?

When I was growing up, Santa liked to use Christmas as a time to stock children up on socks and underwear. Is Santa planning to do the same at your house this year? It does make a great stocking stuffer, even if it’s a little disappointing.

Socks and undies are filler—wrapping peanuts, if you will—of stockings. Do you have any idea how much sheer quantity of candy it would take to fill up your average stocking? A lot. But you plump it up with fresh undies in the toe and use some nice clean socks to prop up the Book of Lifesavers and you’re golden.

Now, let’s discuss that inner-most layer of clothing for our children: Boxers or briefs?

As a man or a woman, you may have a preference. How about as a parent? I do. In fact, I have some pretty strong opinions about it.

I buy cotton boxers for my boys. Sometimes they run around in their underwear and I think boxers are more presentable in terms of lounge wear. And when it’s time to do laundry, there’s just something better about the texture of cotton boxers compared to tighty whiteys. I can grab a handful of dirty clothes and not distinguish what is what. You get a handful of tighty whities, you know exactly what you’ve got. It’s a little off-putting, don’t you think.

For my girls, ages 5 and 12, I buy the plainest, biggest underwear I can find. There are lots of cute options for the 5-year-old which are well within the realm of appropriate. But you get into my older daughter’s sizing and it starts to get downright obscene: Boy cut, sexy, skimpy, trashy, silky—you name it. I will never buy sexy  underwear for my tween or teen. Why? In the words of my mother, “Who’s going to SEE it!?

I am, for sure, being reactionary against the earlier and earlier sexualization of our daughters. But, I simply don’t care if she’s humiliated by her granny panties in the locker room. Clothes are powerful. They can make you feel frumpy or pulled-together or sexy. I want my daughter’s underwear to make her feel discrete and prude. Am I repressed and old-fashioned? Maybe. But as a mother of 2 boys and 2 girls, that’s my prerogative.

Anyway, we’re talking about stocking stuffers. There’s no way Santa would even let a low-cut brief on the sleigh.
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