Sexualizing Kids' Fashion: Mother Lashes Out At Big W

Sexism and gender bias is a common practice in today’s society, but sadly the problem even affects toddlers, who are hardly aware of what’s going on.

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An Australian mother took to Facebook to express her disgust regarding female children’s clothing stocked at Big W, a department store. While shopping for clothes for her 1-year-old daughter, Nikita Friedman realized that the shorts for girls were much shorter than those for boys. Apparently they were not even long enough to cover her child’s nappy.

The woman from Queensland proceeded to put a pair of girls’ shorts over one for boys and showed that even though both pieces of clothing were size 1, one was much shorter than the other.

"Why on Earth does my 1-year-old need to have shorts so short that her nappy is hanging out?" Friedman wrote about the difference in length.

She also went on to label this “disgusting,” as she said that the instance was a true example of gender bias, and that "little girls are not sex objects."

Read: Airlines Finally Move Away From Sexist Dress Code Policies

"Where is the variety and choice for parents looking to teach their children about sun safety and self respect?” Friedman added.

Her post soon garnered a lot of attention, and interestingly, she was not the only mom who had noticed this sexist approach to children’s clothing. Several other parents began commenting that they had often had to buy boys clothing for girls, and the struggle became a whole lot worse as the children grew older.

"Wait until you have a 7-year-old, the clothes are atrocious," online user Cindy Collison wrote.

Taking note of the post and the comments that poured in, Big W commented: "Big W welcomes customer feedback and takes customer concerns about our products seriously. We are looking into this matter and will respond to the customer directly.”

The post, however, was removed from the department store’s page.

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However, a spokesperson from Big W, in an email to Mashable Australia, stated that the store "undertakes a rigorous buying process to ensure we stock a wide range of children's apparel to suit a variety of customer needs and tastes." Hopefully, it will further address the concerns of this parent in particular and justify the difference in sizes.

From the way things are, it is rather sad that gender bias and sexism is still a common practice in our society, and children as young as 1 have fallen prey to it.