Mama’s Had It

By lunchtime yesterday I was a wee bit stir crazy, so I asked Alex if he wanted to run a few errands with me. Since he, like his mama, has never met an excursion he didn’t like, he was all about some errand-running, and he had one VERY SPECIFIC destination to add to my list: the bookstore. We usually spend at least one afternoon a week hanging out in the kids’ section, and there wasn’t anything standing in our way yesterday. So the bookstore it was.

After a couple of quick stops, we pulled into the bookstore parking lot. I noticed a sign advertising their Alabama National Championship sportswear, and I may or may not have rolled my eyes IN THE MOST RESPECTFUL WAY POSSIBLE (I’m proud for the Crimson Tide and all, but I could use a little teensy break from the NEVER-ENDING SUPPLY of sports memorabilia, thankyouverymuch). We hopped out of the car, walked across the parking lot, and as I opened the door to the bookstore and let Alex go in ahead of me, my eyes landed on a display that was set up about two feet in front of the entrance.

The display was a two-tiered cardboard deal and probably about three and a half feet high – much closer to Alex’s eye-level than mine. And on the display? About thirty copies of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition. You know. The one where the model isn’t wearing a swimsuit top and is (barely) covering her chest with her arms.

Now listen. I’m not going to rant and rave about Sports Illustrated and the swimsuit issue and the model who isn’t wearing all of her clothes. There’s a market for that. I get it. They wouldn’t publish the magazine and turn it into such a big media hoopty-do if they weren’t making a whole bunch of money in the process. And honestly, there was a time in my life (see: 20s) when I would’ve told you that magazines like the swimsuit edition weren’t a big deal. And then I would’ve hopped on my (admittedly shaky) soapbox and said something to the effect that anyone who was offended by that magazine (or any magazine with scantily-clothed people) just didn’t need to look at it – because, well, if someone has the freedom to say or publish something I don’t like, then I in turn can exercise my freedom to opt out of listening or reading.

(Oh, my precious live-and-let-live 20s.)


But the kicker in the don’t-look-at-it-if-you’re-offended-by-it line of thinking is that it only works if you have the ability to reason from a somewhat mature point of view. To analyze. To look at a situation from all sides and figure out where you stand on it. And CHILDREN CAN’T DO THAT YET – which is pretty much why this whole bookstore display thingie left me feeling so frustrated.

Here’s the thing. The bookstore has a huge children’s section. It has a Thomas the Tank Engine train table, for crying out loud. It even has comfy chairs around that Thomas table so that parents can watch their kids while they play. So I’m guessing that, to some degree, the bookstore is trying to position themselves as family-friendly. They want us to feel good about taking our kids there. DID I MENTION THE COMFY CHAIRS?

Even still, I know that this bookstore isn’t a place to let children run wild. I wouldn’t let Alex go to the back of the store and browse through all the magazines because he’s six years old and there’s stuff back there I don’t want him to see (I’m talking to you, Maxim). Obviously his daddy and I try to protect him from certain types of media because THAT’S OUR JOB – a six year-old isn’t emotionally or mentally ready to deal with provocative images. In order to help him guard his little heart we have to help him guard his little eyes. That’s why we monitor what he watches on TV. That’s why we restrict his access to the computer.

And granted, we can’t protect him forever. There’s a whole bunch of stuff out there that, as parents, we’ll have to deal with eventually. There’s a whole bunch of stuff out there that he’ll have to deal with eventually.

But he’s six. And it’s not time for that yet.

The bottom line for me is this: I think that if you’re going to set yourself up as a business that welcomes families, putting magazines with a topless cover girl in children’s clear line of sight – at the one and only entrance to your store – well, it’s out of bounds. And to varying degrees, it’s not just this particular bookstore. It’s grocery stores (however, in the YAY, PUBLIX department, they put little plastic shields on top of anything in the check-out line that you wouldn’t want your kids to see). It’s big discount stores. It’s movie rental places. It’s drugstores.

And I’ve been sick and tired of it for awhile. SICK AND TIRED. Yesterday just happened to be the straw that broke this mama camel’s back.

So what did I do about it? Not enough. My first thought was that I should talk to a manager, but then I had visions of me getting all emotional and rattled and ramble-y, so I found a chair, pulled out my phone and looked up the bookstore on Twitter. And I sent them a message. I heard from them a couple of hours later, and they said they’d gotten my email address from my blog (I guess they clicked through from Twitter) and forwarded my complaint and to their customer service department. I appreciate that they followed up with me, but I’m still calling the store manager today. I’ll probably still be rattled and ramble-y. I don’t care.

If there’s any funny side to this little tale of bookstore woe, it’s this. When I first caught a glimpse of that display, I immediately glanced over at Alex to see his reaction. He was preoccupied with some Alabama National Championship water bottle or tire pump or plastic dinnerware, so I stepped back to the magazines and started flipping them so that the cover wasn’t showing. In retrospect the utter futility of what I was doing cracks me up, but at the time I was all, DON’T YOU EVEN TRY TO CROSS ME, BOOKSTORE EMPLOYEES, BECAUSE I WILL STAND HERE AND FLIP MAGAZINES ALL DAY LONG IF NECESSARY, OH YES I WILL, ARE YOU NOT AWARE THAT HUNDREDS OF SMALL CHILDREN WALK THROUGH THESE DOORS EVERY SINGLE DAY?!

About that time Alex dropped whatever he was looking at because he’d spotted something on the shelves right behind the display. In fact, he nearly tripped over himself trying to get to it. And sweet irony of ironies, do you know what it was?

Beth Moore’s new book. It’s #4 on the bestseller list, and A. was so happy to see her face on that first set of bookshelves that he grabbed a copy and said, “Mama! It’s Miss Beth! It’s Miss Beth! HERE’S HER BOOK! IN OUR BOOKSTORE!” I couldn’t help but laugh. Score one for Miss Beth.

But something tells me that, as parents, we’re going to be fighting battles like this one for a very long time.

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  1. I’ve been a reader of your blog for a long time (yes, I’m a lurker). I can totally identify with what you’re saying. In fact on Sunday I was in Target doing the same thing. I know I can’t protect my 8year old son from everything but I will do my best as his mom to protect his little heart and mind.

    Well said, Boomama!

  2. Thank you! I do not have a child, but I too get tired of the constant in-your-face-i-ness (is that a word?) of the things like that. Maybe if enough of us complain, they will move those at least to an upper shelf where kids won’t see them.

    Oh and I already have Beth’s new book and it is next on my to-be-read list!

  3. As a mother of an 8 year old boy, I completely understand where you are coming from. I spend a lot of time protecting my boy from media which he is not old enough to see, hear or understand. I am seeking to keep his precious little heart and mind innocent and pure for as long as possible. You are to be commended for bringing this to the attention of your local bookstore. Keep up the good work, Mama!

  4. Good for you! We NEED to stand up for our children. My son is 6 as well and I just dread the day he starts asking me what some of these commercials mean. It’s so disheartening to see how lax this world has become, children are exposed to so much too soon. Get on your soap box, if we don’t complain, nothing will ever change.

  5. Great post. I think you’re right – it’s not enough to say “don’t look at it if it offends you” for children because they don’t have a handle on it.

  6. On Sunday after church, went sent our kids home with my Momma and Daddy and had us a little V=day date at Border’s Bookstore. I saw the same magazine at the register, with the half naked lady holding her top IN HER HANDS and I thought NO WONDER MEN STRUGGLE. It just makes me sick that it’s accepted and paid for. God help us all.

  7. I LOVE this post! Very well said. I’m encouraged that there are still parents like you guarding your child’s heart and mind. And I love that your son calls Beth Moore ‘Miss Beth’.

  8. Amen to this post! You are rightly concerned!

    As a mama of a college age son (19) I can tell you loud and clear that these images affect them terribly!
    Our son was in middle school when he tapped on our door at 11:30 on a school night “to talk” to his dad and I.
    Little did we know that a visual war was raging in his then 13 year old mind. He confessed that he had looked lustfully at girls at school. He went on to share that they just wear whatever they want with no boundaries to what boys will think. We were so stunned that he was so sadly affected by this. It broke our hearts.
    We also knew that our two younger children (daughters) would not play a part in this type of problem for the boys in their midst. We would make sure they knew the power that they held by how they dressed. And they do.

    We can make our home a safe haven…and equip our little darlins to recognize what’s appropriate and not when it comes to dress and behavior.
    I can say now…..that my kids (all teens) have a strong sense of confidence when it comes to doing what is right. Whether it be dressing, talking in a way that honors God, and walking the walk as Christians. They aren’t afraid to do things God’s way!

    Remember this……Raise Mr. Alex to be a leader! Never ever let him think he has to compromise (not that you do) to fit in with certain kids.
    You’ll be glad you did!
    I know I am!

    Stand strong Boomama!

  9. Kudos to you…and please give an update after you’ve called the store manager. Seriously….a modern day Sodom and Gomorrah, don’t look back, don’t ever look back.

  10. I found this post so interesting and thought provoking. I am in my “live and let live 20’s” as you put it and don’t have children yet, and I don’t think I would have given that display a second thought. I probably would have walked right by or stopped briefly to be jealous of the skinny cover model. I’m curious to see how my opinions of such things will (or won’t) change as I get older or have children.

    It’s not every day that you read a posts that actually makes you stop, think and examine yourself. Thanks for that.

  11. Preach it sister.

  12. I just clapped and said Amen Boomama! I am so glad you called the store to complain.
    I have a 7 year old son and I am completely with you on this 100 percent.

  13. GO “Miss Beth!”

    I SO agree with you. And not only do I have to shield little eyes from seeing that, I have to shield little minds from thinking they have to look like that to be worth anything.

    Lord, help us both.

  14. The Christian singer Clay Crosse and his wife Renee wrote a book about their struggle with Clay’s pornography addiction, and in it, Renee writes that after she found out, she started to realize just how sexually-soaked our media and culture are, seeing images of scantily-clad women on tv, books, etc, all the time. She was in an airport and just lost it and started walking through the terminal, turning every magazine cover over, shaking with anger.

    Your magazine-flipping story reminded me of that. It may have been “futile” but I’d bet more than one person saw your little act of rebellion and took notice. Good for you.

  15. Sallie Howell says:

    I totally agree with your post. I have 3 daughters (15, 14, & 8) and an almost 10 year old son. It is a battle that we must fight as parents. I’m a member of It is a site that helps us do just that.

    I also must admit I would be as equally offended by the AL display. It is all over our NE MS mall…where we are an hour away from the greatest University in MS. Your beloved, MS State. Why should my maroon bleeding four babies be subjected to displays of crimson & white. Oh wait, a soap box that I must not step onto today.

    Thanks for challenging us Moms to take a step toward protecting our children’s eyes and hearts!

  16. Yay! Good for you. I’ve spent many minutes in checkout lines flipping magazines. It will still be there when I go back, but I can flip them so my boys won’t have to look at them.

    Let us know the follow-up with the store.

  17. Girl I echo and agree with every sentiment posted here. It is SO HARD to anticipate when and where and how our children will be hit over the head with this depraved culture we live in. I fight these battles with my three and that’s just what we have to do…FIGHT! And keep fighting sister! It’s worth it….if we can protect these hearts while they are young I fully believe the fruit will be glorious!

  18. Kudos to you from another “lurker” here. You are encouragement for more of us to stand firm for what is right!

  19. My son is 9 and I think the Viagra and other male-enhancement commercials on TV are REALLY offensive since they pop up (and are loud) during prime TV watching time and sports shows. So inappropriate… So are food and other ads that have strong sexual overtones…

    Also offensive is the way I see some young girls coming dressed to grade school and high school….can’t believe Moms are letting their daughters out of the house looking like that. Friends with daughters complain about how hard shopping is and the challenges in finding appropriate clothing that has appropriate fabric to cover things and in not provocative.

    However the magazine covers in bookstores, art in museums, etc. I can totally live with. The human body isn’t something to be ashamed of and I think Europeans have it right and have a much more relazed attitude. I lived in Italy one summer and children just walked by all the naked statues, etc. and remained well-adjusted LOL

    But those inappropriate commercials that bring pictures and sound into my living room uninvited…..HATE THEM!

  20. Lorie from NC says:

    Good for you sista! I’m glad to know I’m not alone in getting ticked off at all of this overexposure.

  21. Please do post a follow-up on your conversation with the store manager. I have been fighting this battle for years now, and will be for some time to come (my oldest is 16, my youngest 2.5). Don’t even get me STARTED on what many major retailers consider to be appropriate clothing for little girls (happily for me, my 13 year old daughter is modest by nature, so the only time her clothes are too tight/short/revealing is when she’s had a growth spurt).

    With the age spread of my children, I find myself fighting this war in two ways; with the smalls I just take preemptory action (when he was about your Alex’s age my oldest came looking for me to change the tv channel because he thought that what was on was “not age appropriate” … in retrospect, we may have overused that phrase), with my teenagers we talk about WHY we think certain images/clothes/music/books/movies are too much and something we want to avoid. Our kids live in the world, it’s our job to provide them with a roadmap — and hope they remember to use it.

  22. So, so true! I saw your tweet & their response. I feel much the same way about Direct TV’s having Nick, Jr as channel 169 and Spike TV as 168. Grrrr!

    And, said, “family friendly” bookstore has no changing station in their Hwy 31 location & you have to get a key to get in their restrooms (NOT cool when you have a 3YO who insists on waiting to tell you of his need to potty until THE ABSOLUTE LAST MINUTE!) Which is about one Death Metal Muzak channel away from FAMILY UNFRIENDLY as I’ve ever experienced.

  23. Good for you, girl! It’s not only my child that has to see that crap, but also my husband. I think we should all follow through and contact store management, owners, etc. or else nothing will ever change.

    I love that Alex went straight to Mrs. Beth. So precious (and innocent!)

  24. Thank you for taking that stand. Even if it is one small step in one place. You made a difference. The images that are placed in our sons’ and husbands’ minds can not be overestimated in their power. Satan uses this as an ever active place to cause harm to our families and those we love. Go Boomama!

  25. I am so glad you posted this. Our family has the philosophy that we are to be “in the world, not of it”. This means we do not hole up in little caves to make sure our children never hear or see anything we don’t want them to. But it also means that we stand up (and live out) as Christians for a better way.

    I have flipped a magazine before at our small town grocery store(it was just one, but it was a Maxim with a naked woman on the front wrapped in chains, but was in plain site for little children and grown men to see), so I chuckled at the image of you flipping all the magazines. I probably would have done the same thing – although with my tendency toward clumsiness would have accidentally knocked the display down in the process bringing even more attention to it than was ever intended. :)

    If I had been there watching you I would have cheered, but since I am sitting at home I will say: Way to go BooMama! I hope somebody takes notice.

  26. Preach!

    In more words – I’m glad you spoke up. So many times I get afraid of my shaky, rambling I-hate-confrontation voice and don’t.

  27. you go girl!!!!!!!

    seriously that burns me up!

  28. Totally get this…
    Someone unfortunately wasn’t thinking when they put together the merchandising plans for the SI Swimsuit Edition.

    And as someone who used to work in marketing for said unmentioned local bookstore, I want to acknowledge how you handled this in the post. It is not about bringing down the store. It is about encouraging the store to change.

    I hope you are doing well!

  29. This was one of your best – very well-said. As a mama of two toddlers, I am with you every bit on this one.

    And I remember those 20s: pre-kids and full of myself sitting on the fence coupled with a side of immaturity.

    Thanks BooMama.

  30. good for you, BooMama – turning those magazines over. I’ve done the same thing in grocery checkout lines.

  31. Well said, BooMama. I had that same view back in my twenties….and the same view you’ve got now.
    Good for you flippin’ those magazines!

  32. Preach on, Boo Baby! I’m proud to know you. I was appalled when I took my boys to see the movie, The Blindside. I did all kinds of research and decided that we could take our 9 year olds to a PG-13 movie because of the message (we’re a bi-racial family).

    But, it didn’t occur to me the sensor the “coming attractions!” It was 15 minutes of s*x! I was just getting up to take them to the lobby when the movie started. Those preview embarrassed me and I’m a grown woman!

    Thanks for taking a stand and raising up your boy in the nuture and admonition of the Lord. Miss Beth would be so proud!

  33. I flip those magazines in the check-out line all the time. The way I see it – for every magazine that those employees have to take the time to flip back over, that’s the number of times that my message is sent showing the disapproval. Seriously – what are they thinking?

  34. Jenny from VA says:

    AMEN! AMEN! AMEN! I totally agree with everything you expressed.

    I will never forget the day I was with my 5 year old son at the mall. We were headed to the indoor play place. He stopped DEAD IN HIS TRACKS at the Victoria’s Secret window and looked up. I was dumbfounded. He said “Mommy, why is that woman in her underwear?” Oh, Lord have mercy! Come quickly, Lord Jesus!!

  35. Loved this post. As I was reading, my heart started racing and I was getting all up-in-arms about it too. I have so much to say about it, but I shall save it for a post of my own someday. If my thoughts are ever clear and make sense like yours. Right now they’re all confuddled and jumbled up in a pile of Grrrness (it’s a new word). I’m glad you took a stand!!

  36. That’s “flippin” awesome :) You GO!

  37. Amen and amen–preach it sister!

  38. You’re right. We’re going to be fighting battles like this for a long time but I’m so proud of you for taking action and doing something about it – whether or not you thought it would make a difference. If more people did what you did – there’d be no question of it making a difference. It would be a profound and big signal that store owners would listen to.

  39. Bravo, Sophie! I don’t have children (yet), but I always have these same thoughts. My husband diligently tries to avoid displays like this (God gave me a really good man), but sometimes the stores make it really tough. I’m so glad you’re raising a really good little man!

  40. Mary Kat's Mom says:

    Amen, Sister! At least you did something! I am proud of you for doing what you did. So many of us just turn and walk and hope that the next person will do something. And you and D are teaching your precious son THE WAY so he will have a great foundation as all of this comes at him from all sides! ! See you soon!

  41. I really agree with your post. Children (and, unfortunately, many adults) just don’t have the resources to process such imagery. However, I’m dismayed by some of the comments here. The problem isn’t how individual women are dressing–the problem is how our culture views women and sex. Women are taught that their only value is sexual, yet we slut-shame them for cashing in on what they perceive as their only worth? Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s devastating that our culture has such a sad view of sex and gender (you know, women are gatekeepers, men are uncontrollable animals…give me a break), but I think some of the comments are missing the mark.

  42. If you’ll just scootch over a bit, I’ll sit with you on this one.

  43. Today is the first time i’ve happened upon your blog. i’m impressed. have to say i have 3 sons myself ages 16, 14 & 10. it is very frustrating for me as a parent trying to teach them abstinance and sexual purity, when this schtuff is in their faces ALL THE TIME. how can i say “don’t look” when they would have to be walking around in blinders to not see it, cuz its EVERYWHERE! MAGAZINES, BOOKS, TV, MOVIES, the INTERWEBS…..whats a mom to do????

  44. Amen. I am soo glad you not only decided to write about this, but you actually took a proactive stand in the right direction.

  45. Oh, amen. As a well-established and highly-skilled magazine-flipper, I’m with you 100% on this one. I’ve gotten to the point where I do my best to not take my kids to the grocery store (the magazines!), the mall (certain stores!), and other places (all the stuff unfit for kids!). I’m a mom of two boys and thinking about all the junk that’s out there — targeting them — makes me sick.

    Good for you for tweeting…and calling the store manager. You rock, and you have many moms in your corner.

  46. I agree with you on all counts. But, I do find it slightly more than hysterical that they had the Swimsuit issue positioned in front of Beth Moore’s book.

    Lord have mercy. Can you imagine if her sweet little self was actually able to see her own face above the bodies of those women? She’d have us all in stitches, I’d guess. Only for some folks it wouldn’t be from laughter.

  47. I saw the exact same SI issue at our eye doctor’s office last week. The eye doctor?! Like you, I promptly turned it around. I was happy to see the back page wasn’t the back side of that photograph. I would have been doubly enraged…and doubly depressed. I think I’ll go back next week and replace it with my copy of “Sweatpants Are Sexy Weekly.”

  48. Standing O! Standing O!

  49. So thankful for mamas like you and Miss Beth.

    I don’t have any boys, but you have my solemn promise that as long as my girls are under my roof, they will dress modestly and treat boys/men with respect.

    Love you!


    You should see me at the Wal-Marts checkout when the boys are with me!

  51. As the mama of both a 7 year old boy AND a 15 year old boy (with an 11 year old boy thrown in the middle,) I hear you! As bad as it is for them to see it at 7, imagine being 15, trying to resist all the temptation out there and having it thrown in your face constantly. It’s not fair, and it’s not right.

  52. I don’t even have children (yet), but that deserves a hearty AMEN!

  53. Sally Green says:

    I just have to say AMEN!!! And can we get Victoria’s Secret to be a little more Secret instead of me having to walk by with my little boy and girls and explain that yes those are not real people in their underwear and we try to be more discreet! I don’t care what you wear in the bedroom but my 9 yr old, 7 yr old and 5 yr old don’t need to know all about it yet! UGH!!

  54. Amen!! I work for a doctor and we recently got that issue in and he told us to go put it out on the magazine rack in the waiting room. I looked at him and (somewhat politely) said “we are not putting that out there for our patients and their children to see!!” Mercy.

    Come Lord Jesus, come!

  55. Very well said! As a mother of teens I am in complete agreement with you!

  56. I just can’t “AMEN” this enough, girlfriend!

    EXCELLENT post.

  57. Sorry that you are having to face this battle. I would rather that businesses were more considerate of what is and is not family friendly. Unfortunately, they are more driven by all the money that this particular issue brings.

    I am also sorry to hear that you are tired of seeing all the Alabama national championship items…but as an SEC fan (Arkansas Razorbacks) living in the great state of Texas, I am just glad it is y’all and not us! Ha! (Maybe next year it can be Mississippi State paraphernalia instead)


  58. I have these same thoughts going through my head when walking by Victoria Secret in the mall. needless to say it is the main store right in the middle and we dont go “mall walking” very often!!! Thank goodness the movies are at a totally different end!

  59. Well said! And we all don’t say it enough!

    It is hard to raise boys, to train their eyes to keep away, but also for my little girl ~ I don’t want her thinking this is the ‘right’ thing!! Arrrghh!

    The husband and I have talked many times about this, and we’ve come to the only logical solution: We’re going to become Amish. You are welcome at our commune any time ; )

  60. My boys look at their shoes when we’re walking through a store or mall and have to pass a store, person, or picture with scantily clad women. Sometimes they’ll notice before we do and ask us to direct them because they can’t see to walk because they’re looking at their shoes and don’t want to bump into anyone or anything. They’ve even been known to flip a magazine in the check-out while having their heads turned, and the oldest one is only 13 now. They turn their heads during commercials that are new until we know they are safe.

    Our SI came in the mail and it went straight to the trash. We had to watch carefully for it because we knew it was coming. Hubby doesn’t look at it either.

  61. Here, here! As a mom to 3 boys (one 13), I know from where you speak. My boys are so green. We want them to ENJOY and live IN their CHILDhood.

    You are preparing him correctly. We got our first taste of the “world’s view” when #1 was in middle school last yr. The “other” boys were calling him baby because he didn’t know about half the stuff they were telling him when they had their “free” time @ school, which caused me great concern.

    I know I cannot shelter him all of his life, but by golly – – there seems so much more to deal w/ these days.

    Praying for all of us ..

  62. You just keep flippin’ those magazines, momma. Literally and metaphorically.

  63. This post brought out the lurker in me! AMEN! I used to shop only at Publix because I knew my kids wouldn’t see anything like this. We have moved to a city with no Publix stores (if you can even imagine that…) and find myself going shopping at weird times so I can leave them at home. I have two girls, 8 and 5, and I don’t even want them to think this is appropriate. Nor do I want to explain why some woman has no clothes on. I’m so glad you have taken a stand!!

  64. I’m glad you contacted the store. I would have done the same, I hope. I subscribe to SI, but opt out of receiving the swimsuit issue every year because I don’t want my husband to have to deal with that temptation, and I don’t want it in the reach of any of my children, girls or boys. Wal-Mart had a bunch of them in the checkout line yesterday, but someone (a soul sister to you I’m sure) had turned the front one around to cover the rest up. Interestingly, Cosmo is always covered (at least the headlines) but they didn’t do the same for the almost naked woman. Strange.

  65. Preach on, sister. While the porn business (yes, I did just call half naked women on the cover of a magazine “porn”) is a multi-multi billion dollar industry, I don’t want my kids subjected to it when they innocently walk into our favorite local bookstore. It’s almost come to the point that I have do all of my shopping online…sigh.

  66. God’s timing of this post was perfect for me. It is an encouragement that I am not alone in the fight for our children’s hearts.

    Just last night, I discovered that my 12 yr old son had received some inappropriate pictures over his phone of a 12 yr old girl. Yes, I said 12 years old. Just barely 12 at that! To say I was blown away is such an understatement. I have guarded my son’s eyes and mind as much as possible up until this point. This growing up stuff is tough! For kids AND parents. There are so many issues that have to be addressed, so many difficult conversations that must take place. It puts me on a media-driven-society soapbox like you wouldn’t believe.

    And more than once, I have said to myself…now, how can I get Beth’s book into this girl’s hands? I think I am going to start a campaign to have Beth’s book be a part of the 6th grade girls’ curriculum!

    Next time you flip one, flip one for me, too!

  67. Amen and AMEN, I say. My boy’s two and I’m already worrying about this kind of stuff. If we all took the time to call managers every time something bad (and good!) comes up, imagine the change we could bring.

  68. My 13 year old son asked for a subscription to Sports Illustrated for Christmas. He had outgrown SI for Kids (or so he thought) and it seemed like a good gift that would keep on giving. The swimsuit issue arrived last week and my husband intercepted it as soon as it arrived. He gave it to me (without looking at it, bless his heart) to decide if I thought my son should see it. AS IF! I actually did flip through it, and it can’t be about sports or swim suits (since the top half is missing off of most of them) so what is the purpose? A mama’s job is never done! Keep flipping those magazines over BooMama!

  69. Oh, yes Ma’am. You are speaking my language. I would have done the same thing as you (except I’m not sure I would have been as quick thinking to use Twitter…go you!) I won’t rant here since you said what I was thinking but I will say that I love that A was more interested in Miss Beth’s book!

  70. Sophie, this is why I love you. Honestly, you are so right. It’s like they target to our kids. I can’t protect their little eyes forever, but I will as long as I can. I have a daughter and I’d never want her to think that cover is how she is supposed to look or act.

  71. What a timely post! I was just at a large chain bookstore today and saw a giant display of this issue of Sports Illustrated right at eye-level for a child. I don’t have any children, but in that moment, I hurt for those of you who do and said a little prayer for you. It’s got to be so scary to try to protect your children from all the bad decisions people make.

  72. I hope you get tons of comments here and companies realize how very sick of it we are. I think we were in this same store Sunday (just thinking of the Thomas the Train track surrounded by comfy chairs), but ours has two doors. I didn’t notice this by the side door we entered. Now I’ll know to watch (and maybe flip me some magazines!).

  73. Amen and Amen, sister!! I usually lurk {and enjoy a good giggle as I read your posts}, but just had to give you a High-5 over your initiative to take action over something so important to those men in our lives…young and old! Li’l Alex is so blessed to have a mama like you!

    We don’t watch TV anymore and usually will opt to take the kids to the library instead of going to our local bookstore, for that very reason. It’s even at the grocery stores, and that’s a little more difficut to avoid, but I sooooo agree with you! Please let us know what comes of your call with the store mgr.

    Many thanks to you! And Miss Beth too. ;)

  74. YOU. GO. GIRL. You are 150% completely right on, and don’t you back down. They will push back, but keep pushin. My kids are 26 and 22, and I’m STILL APPALLED at the stuff they are regularly exposed to. This is what they mean by the Armor of God. I’d better shut up, I’m gonna be preaching soon.

  75. Well said! I read a facebook status from someone today that said she requested the manager at her grocery store to put all of the SI swimsuit editions backwards and he said he’d do it! Good for you to twitter the bookstore. You’ll have to let us know if anything happens from it.

  76. I am so glad you stood up for what you believe and so many of us as well. I would have been like you, wanting to say something to management, but knowing that I would probably be a bubbling mess if I tried. We live in a wonderful military town on the east coast, and one morning we took our kids out for a family breakfast at the local pancake house. While we sat at the table, the booth behind us contained a group of young marines cussing up a storm as they chatted. Finally, I had enough and asked my husband to consider their language with young children around, and that complied with our request. After we finished our breakfast, I gave them enough to cover their bill and thanked them for serving our nation and helping us out with their language. I pray we all can continue to take courage as parents, to guard our children from the IN YOUR FACE of this world.

    Daily laying it at the Master’s feet!
    Laura Ann

  77. Rachel beat me to it but I wanted to say another big
    I’m with you the whole way, from not caring in my 20s to just wishing that businesses that are child friendly will think to stay that way. Alas, too many 20-somethings work there.
    And it sounds like you don’t need to worry too much about that yet.
    I hate driving by the “gentleman’s clubs” billboards on the highway. One of these days, my early reader will want to know why the half-naked girl is on the gentleman’s club billboard and I will be at a total loss.

  78. With my Baptist hands raised in the air, I yell a very loud AMEN!

  79. First, I love you. Second, I have a 4 y/o son and 2 y/o daughter and wow… the things we have to look forward to. It honestly scares the PEE out of me. I know the Lord trusted us with their little lives, but oh my word I’m scared of the world they will live in. Thankfully, greater is He who is in us than he who is in the world.

  80. You mean the new Beth Moore book about women and our insecurities… the insecurities that are fed by heavily Photoshopped images of surgically-enhanced beauties and the impossibility of competing with them? THAT Beth Moore book?

    I’ll say it was ironic.

    I’m so glad you said something. Go, Sophie!!

  81. Oh, Sophie. I sighed before I started my comment. A deep, deep sigh of I don’t even know what. Maybe its feeling like we’re pushing against a solid wall.

    I did have to laugh about the magazine flipping though. I’ve done the same thing in the checkout lines at Walmart when the swimsuit calendars are for sale at my kid’s eye level, and I know the feeling of I’ll take on the whole world right now, so don’t you even mess with me.

    Just like you said, I understand people have decisions to make. So let them make them and leave my kids alone! I even understand that someday my kids will have decisions to make, but you were exactly right: they are not yet ready to make them SO LEAVE MY KIDS ALONE! Let them stay innocent (as innocent as they get, anyway) for a while longer.

    Besides, didn’t Jericho used to have some pretty solid walls?

  82. Give me the number to that bookstore and I’ll call them too. I’ll give them the perspective of a mama with a daughter. I’m sick to death of the lies these rags tell our girls about who they should be. Hang tough, Boo. Thanks for taking one for the team!

  83. AMEN!!! As the mama of 3 boys (5 & 6 years, 15 months) I cannot agree with you more!! I get that they want to sell those kinds of magazines but is it really necessary to put them in front of impressionable little eyes? I don’t think so!

  84. I’m with you! Recently I was running errands (without kids, thank the Lord!) and came out of the office supply store to find that parked right next to me was a van with a “body wrap” advertising a strip club, with bigger-than-life size photos of women all over it. Went to Sam’s next and found that Mr. strip club was shopping at all the same stores as me. I can only imagine the conversation when that van pulls up next to us at a stoplight–with all 4 of my kids in the car. I’m all for freedom of speech, but I also want the choice to protect my kids from those images. Makes me sad, but I know the truth is that we are not supposed to be comfortable in this world. I have to figure out how to teach them to be “in it and not of it.”

  85. Just this morning I was in a checkout line where some (wonderful) parent had flipped the covers of a few not-so-awesome magazine covers. It’s been so long since I’ve paid attention that I was a bit shocked by the reality that my boys are getting old enough for me to THINK about such things.

    Also? I’m totally not envying the Google searches you’re going to get from this post. HA!

  86. Amen and amen! I’m so thankful you are addressing this with the store management. I’m behind you 100%!

  87. Girl…having these 3 precious boys that I have…I hate to tell ya, but it’s always something. I was so not thrilled with ESPN’s constant coverage of Tiger Woods. That was something new to teach that I wasn’t really happy about. They knew about pornography, but the whole addiction thing threw em.

    Oh tender innocence, I love you.

    Hang in there. Praying for all of us.

  88. Good. For. You. I can’t wait to hear what the manager says when you talk to him. Glad you’re standing up!

  89. Amen!!

  90. GOOD FOR YOU! I just discovered your website yesterday, and as soon as I read this post, I knew God had directed me to you.

    First of all, when I saw the SI swimsuit cover, I was outraged!!! It is like P*RN! The girl is completely without a top and it is just amazing that they put this filth on the shelves for little eyes to see. If I were there with you, I would GLADLY have helped you flip over those magazines!!! :)

    Keep up the good work!

  91. Amen… and good for you! I’m so glad you took the time to let them know how you felt. Too many people get all heated up over an issue but then fail to follow through and do anything that could change it.

    As the mom of a teen son, I can tell you it is very HARD to protect their eyes and hearts from all the trash that’s out there. I’ve been a magazine and channel flipper for years and years now.


  92. AAAA-MEN!

    So glad you followed up on this.

    And don’t you just love those distractions? We’re certainly not short on the Saints Superbowl Championship items.

  93. oh my gosh – at our grocery store yesterday there was the same display at the end of the COOKIE AISLE, down at kid-level. WHAT THE HECK?????

  94. AMEN!!! I hope you follow up to make sure the display gets moved to a “more appropriate” place. Stay on them, Honey!

  95. HeatherCondict says:

    Girl, you are soooo right. I don’t even have kids but I noticed that SI cover and immediately thought that I was GLAD I didn’t have any kids with me at that moment. Or my grandparents, for that matter.

  96. I agree with the judge who once said(and I paraphrase ’cause I can’t quote perzactly the words) “I may not be able to describe pornography but I know it when I see it” – So doggoned proud of you I could bust – we need to protect everyone – people struggling with pornography is one of the fastest growing addictions. We have friends who are some of the Godliest people I know – and they have a teenager truly struggling – so go to the bookstore to have a nice time and BLAM – boobies in your face! You tell ’em and if you need a petition signed – I’m your Huckleberry on that one. BTW – WTG Miss Beth and God please continue to bless dear Alex and his sweet mama!

  97. Great post! I know exactly how you feel. Check out my blog and read the post entitled 10 going on 21. So true! God Bless you!

  98. I total agree! Love your post! Thanks for your thoughts!

  99. This mama’s had it too.

    Good job and keep up the good work standing up for your son!

  100. It is our job, our responsibiltiy to give our boys a firm foundation and teach them to overt their eyes and guard their hearts. But, Soph, you are on the right track, you have been given this insight. I have complained at one store, not sure it helped but it did show our boys how to stand up for what is right and true. They will have to go out into the world and I want to prepare them, but at 4 and 7, they are not ready for what this world is offering. What a blessing that we do know where to find what is pure, what is true, what is everlasting.

    Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the well-spring of life. Proverbs 4:23
    (I blogged about this on Valentine’s Day actually)!
    The Park Wife