tznius to wear skirts that just hit the knee or are above the knee?

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  • #594327

    Imaofthree
    Participant

    How is it that nowadays I see very frum women wearing short skirts that do not cover their knees or are “just, just” and if they sit down it goes way to high exposing too much? How did this become acceptable? And these are women who would never wear a denim skirt because it is not frum enough, but they will wear short tight skirts? anyone else notice this happening?

    #730931

    dunno
    Member

    You answered your own question so why bother asking?

    #730932

    i’ve noticed this a lot. it’s so upsetting. i’ve seen some really good girls from my high school who got married, and all of a sudden their tznius went bye-bye, flew right out the window. and it’s not just the newly marrieds. it’s so many ppl. and it’s sad. really sad.

    #730933

    snapplegrl
    Member

    its also interesting that the uniform skirts also got shorter.. when i went to school we had skirts till our ankles.. i guess in the recesson they cut the fabric..

    so the kids dont say anything cuz mom is doing it also.. i guess. its abig problem that should be more enforced in schools first..

    #730934

    dunno
    Member

    snapplegrl

    I know the short uniform skirts are more common but nowadays that’s warn more than the long ones? I think the fad started with Masores.

    #730935

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    We are doing this again!!!!!!!!

    #730936

    IMHO it’s better to wear a nice denim skirt then a black skirt that is too tight and the length is ” just just”.

    #730937

    dunno
    Member

    Back in the day no one thought anything was wrong with denim skirts…when did that change? I’ve heard about people not wearing jeans (pants) but the skirts seem like a relatively new phenomenon to me.

    #730938

    smartcookie
    Member

    Sadly, Tznius is going downward. The skirts are only 1% of the problem.

    #730939

    bein_hasdorim
    Participant

    I know this is not my area, however I wanted to point out a weird(sad) point related to this topic. I noticed many who wear these short skirts, When they sit down they keep on pulling it down in an attempt to cover the natural hike that sitting causes.

    Here’s my problem, If you know this happens and it even bothers you, to the extent that every other second you make an attempt to pull it down more, Why on earth are you wearing it?

    being dan L’kaf Zchus I guess it shrunk in the wash and they have nothing else to wear and they didn’t notice till they sat down.

    or perhaps they dont want to, it is just peer pressure

    to fit in the style or crowds, however, that is hard to believe for an Isha Tzanuah is just that, no matter what.

    #730940

    QuestionForYou
    Participant

    From the book, “Daughters of Dignity,” about Tznius, P. 54:

    “Immodesty drives away the Shechina. . . For when Hashem leaves us, we are left with no protection against enemies, tragedies, illnesses, Lo Alaynu. There exists no other place in the Torah where such a harsh consequence occurs as a result of sin.”

    I think that all girls’ Yeshivas, both elementary schools and high schools, should include in their curricula, guidelines about what Tznius entails, including the benefits of Tznius, and the consequences of what happens when C”V there is a lack of Tznius.

    I believe that many girls and women don’t know or don’t realize that their elbows and knees are Ervah and must be covered.

    #730941

    oomis
    Participant

    There are different levels of tznius, and also there are different ways people interpret the concept. I know some incredibly tzniusdig young ladies who wear skirts that are slightly shorter than most of us would think of as being so. You would never hear L”H from their lips, or see them behave in a way that is immodest. I have conversely seen girls with skirts several inches below the knees, collars up to their chins, sleeves down to the wrists, whose personaly sense of propriety is very unladylike and in my opinion not tzniusdig. Forty years ago, frum girls who were considered to be modest, wore shorter skirts than even today. They wore pants, they wore shorts with sleeveless shirts, they wore bathing suits and went mixed swimming.

    They were yeshivah girls, they were respectful to their elders, they did chessed for others, they were not loud or ostentatious. But by today’s measure, they would not be considered by many people in the CR to have been tzniusdig, and yet internally they were extremely so.

    Yes, we have certain hashkafic absolutes, but we also have to remember that tznius is not only measured in inches. It is measured in actions. Maybe some of the girls who were described, do not fit the mold that some would like. That does not automatically make them untzniusdig, even if their mode of dress might be considered that way by many.

    #730942

    here we go again…

    #730943

    Maskima
    Member

    Personaly, I believe there is a strong awareness out there alredy about this issue in every possible newspaper/articles and Bais Yaakov school out there. Its definitly a strong Yetzer hara that most frum girls and mothers battle w/ a day to day basis! We are all responsible for ourselfs!!!

    Also it’s a horrible thing to single out and, especially to name a school!

    b careful nxt time…

    #730944

    Bed-Stuy
    Participant

    maofthree

    Member

    How is it that nowadays I see very frum women wearing short skirts that do not cover their knees or are “just, just” and if they sit down it goes way to high exposing too much?

    Clearly these are not very frum women. Au contraire.

    #730945

    Imaofthree
    Participant

    When a male relative of mine was sitting shiva, a woman from a choshuvah family came (which was very nice of her). She sat in front of him with her “just just” skirt and the skirt did not cover her knees by a long shot. She kept tugging at her skirt to make it longer (didn’t help). I wanted to give her a small blanket to cover up! This male relative was sitting on a low chair so he had to keep his eyes away from looking up her skirt. How horrible!

    #730946

    QuestionForYou
    Participant

    Tznius includes both properly covering parts of the body that are supposed to be covered (external Tznius), and also modest speech and behavior (internal Tznius).

    #730948

    QuestionForYou
    Participant

    “Also it’s a horrible thing to single out and, especially to name a school!

    b careful next time…”

    Where was a school named, in any of these posts?

    Did I miss something?

    #730949

    mdd
    Member

    Oomis, what they did 40 years ago was also terrible. The Torah does not change because many people are doing aveiros.

    #730950

    this is really a big issue. Just this evening, on my commute back home I saw a woman on the subway wearing a sheitel with her skirt WAY above her knees. I was disgusted. People don’t realize that dressing tznius is like wearing a badge of honor. The really sad part about it is that, I work in the city, but I see this problem mostly FLATBUSH, where the minhag hamakom is to dress tznius, and I do not see it in the city, hardly at all.

    #730951

    QuestionForYou
    Participant

    I don’t see this matter as confined to a specific neighborhood.

    It’s an issue in the tri-state area, in general.

    #730952

    mdd
    Member

    Oomis, I read your outrageous post again. ” Some would not consider them tsniusdig…”. The Torah standards, the Halocha do not change!! According to you, it is shayach to wear a bathing suit in front of men and still be a tsanua — this beyond anything!

    #730953

    dunno
    Member

    Maskima

    I’m not saying the skirts are short. I’m talking about the trend of short vs long uniform skirts. Nothing to do with knees showing.

    #730954

    oomis
    Participant

    Oomis, I read your outrageous post again. ” Some would not consider them tsniusdig…”. The Torah standards, the Halocha do not change!! According to you, it is shayach to wear a bathing suit in front of men and still be a tsanua — this beyond anything! “

    Clearly you misunderstood everything I posted. According to ME is not the issue. I don’t do it. But I tried to make the point that not everything is black and white and there is a concept of tznius that is NOT about the skirt length. We follow certain rules now that fifty years ago were not followed by mainstream frum people. Would you argue that if one’s mother did not cover her hair that she was not a tzniusdig person at that time? If you say yes to that, then we have no place where we can dialogue about this issue.

    Girls can be very tzniusdig in their behavior, yet dress in a way that you might find offensive. Their understanding of the concept of tznius in clothing is not consistent with the halacha as most of us follow it now. Though you are correct that the Torah does not change, our understanding of it sometimes does vary somewhat from rov to rov, from societal group to societal group, and from neighborhood to neighborhood. There are some people who believe that women MUST wear seamed stockings, or a hat on top of a shaitel. There are men who would not be seen in a hat other than a black one, or in a colored shirt. Are those who dress differently from them, untzniusdig? They believe that what they are doing is the only right thing to do.

    Many people here are trashing some girls’ TOTAL tznius, based on only one aspect of their tznius. BTW, mdd, what people did 40 years ago was not “terrible,” as you say (that’s a really judgmental word against people who remained frum in extremely difficult times). By TODAY’S standards, it may have been less strict, but not terible by any means. A lot of things were done in those days that rabbonim do not accept today, i.e. using baby carriages in a place where there is no eruv. It is not a case of TERRIBLE. It is that we understand things in a different way than we did then. We know more about kashrus, about physics, the way the human body functions, and we also have moved more to the right in recent decades, so that which was the norm a long time ago, no longer is.

    You truly misunderstood every point I was making. I don;t know if you are a child of the 1950s, but if you were, you would have “gotten” what I was saying.

    #730956

    oomis:

    Yes, we have certain hashkafic absolutes, but we also have to remember that tznius is not only measured in inches. It is measured in actions.

    We also have to remember that tznius is not only measured in actions. It is measured in inches.

    Would you argue that if one’s mother did not cover her hair that she was not a tzniusdig person at that time? If you say yes to that, then we have no place where we can dialogue about this issue.

    Its hard to understand where you are coming from. The gemarah in kesubos 72a calls it a d’oraissa. Would you similarly ask if we would call people who went to work on shabbos during the Depression ‘mechalel Shabbos’ since many otherwise frum people did it? There are halachic requirements that supersede our actions in any given era.

    Until around 300 years ago most people didn’t wear tzitzis. Does that mean that what they were doing is right? No, instead rabbonim went (one in particular I forgot who) around and taught people that they should wear tzitzis every day.

    #730957

    m in Israel
    Member

    OOMIS — I’m very confused reading your posts. You talk about girls/women who are not keeping the halachos of tznius (shorts and sleeveless shirts are assur al pi halacha according to EVERY Orthodox opinion), and then say they are still tziusdik because they don’t speak L”H, do Chessed, etc. What does that have to do with it? We are not discussing if these people were frum — we are talking about a specific set of Halacha which they were not keeping properly. Just because a person is careful with some Halachos doesn’t change the fact that they may not be keeping other Halachos, and certainly doesn’t change the definition of Tznius. Yes tznius in a general sense can include avoiding loud and showy behavior, but there are specific Halachic (not Hashkafic, as you imply) parameters that ARE black and white. Can a women still be “tzniusdik inside” if she is not keeping these Halachos? Perhaps, but that doesn’t define her a an “isha tznua” any more than someone keeping part of the halachos of Kashrus can be called “keeping kosher”.

    I agree that even when someone keeps all the dinim exactly, they may still not be in keeping with the spirit of tznius, but that simply means they are also not completely tzniusdik — it doesn’t mean the halachos don’t count!

    It is true that there are differences of opinion with regard to certain aspects of tznius, but certain aspects are universally accepted. Some things are clear chumras: those who wear seamed stockings and double head coverings are following their poskim, who have various reasons including tznius, kabbalistic concepts, etc., but even they do not say one is violating the ikkur din of tznius by not dressing like that.

    Then there are certain guidelines where poskim disagree, some saying these aspects are an integral part of tznius, and others disagreeing (such as the part of the leg between the ankle and the knee with regard to socks).

    But certain things are unarguably required al pi halach — such as wearing pants, bathing suits in a public place, and a married women covering her hair. There may be slight differences about details (the famous “2 tefach” question, or the psak from Rav Soloveichik that a man does not need to divorce his wife over this issue) but one would have to say that if your mother did not cover her hair, no matter the time period, she was not keeping the halachos of tznius al pi din torah. This is not to say she was a terrible person, or any less “frum” in other areas. She may have been much more “frum” in many other ways, and may have kept many other halachos much more carefully then we do today. But Halacha is still halacha!!!!

    As you mention, during a time period when it was very difficult to remain frum, it is impossible to judge their behavior. This was compounded by the fact that many people had less knowledge of Halacha as unfortunately the Jewish education system in the US left much to be desired. Those who remained at all frum are deserving of our admiration. However, things that were wrong are still wrong — do you have any evidence that even the poskim of that time “allowed” these things? It seems more likely that most Jews simply knew less about the details of Halacha — not as you say “A lot of things were done in those days that rabbonim do not accept today, i.e. using baby carriages in a place where there is no eruv” implying that the rabbonim in those days did accept it.

    #730958

    kapusta
    Participant

    dunno, just to set things straight, the short uniform skirt thing did not start in Masores. I could give you the name of the person who started it in a different school (another well known school). She is a good friend of mine (and a very good girl). Interesting enough, we were once discussing trendsetters in high schools and how certain things came to be and she mentioned the short skirts and honestly had no idea she was the one to start it.

    As for the OP, I think a lot of the issue is society. As was mentioned, some people will not go outside in a jeans skirt, but have no problem with a skirt that barely reaches the knee. A short skirt (read: a too short skirt) is a big problem in Halacha. A jeans skirt was made out to be a big problem. If the community would make noise about short skirts, you can bet they would be gone in a snap. On the bright side, I think slowly, things may be starting to improve.

    Disclaimer: I have nothing against anything thats tznius, jeans skirt included.

    Disclaimer 2: I didn’t read the entire thread, I apologize if I repeated what someone else said.

    *kapusta*

    #730959

    seeallsides
    Participant

    Question-for-you – thank you for posting “Immodesty drives away the Shechina. . For when Hashem leaves us, we are left with no protection against enemies, tragedies, illnesses, Lo Alaynu. There exists no other place in the Torah where such a harsh consequence occurs as a result of sin

    I think people are aware of the problem – i got a call last week that they are trying to have tznius groups meet in every neighborhood

    There unfortunately was a school named – be happy you missed it.

    We have to hear the words of our chachamim – I am shocked sometimes to go to a frum store and see people on line that are dressed so k’neged a bas yisroel that it’s all i can do to control myself from approaching them and asking them what they are thinking?

    #730960

    mdd
    Member

    I agree with m in Israel. Just I would say it in stronger terms.

    #730961

    dunno
    Member

    “There unfortunately was a school named – be happy you missed it.”

    Again, I’m NOT saying they wear skirts above the knees there. All I’m saying is that long uniform skirts used to be the “in” things and now shorter ones are. THAT’S IT! I’m not talking about above/below the knee AT ALL!

    #730962

    SJSinNYC
    Member

    Some people exude tznius behavior, even if their wardrobe is less than tzanua.

    Some people exude immodesty in actions even if they cover every inch.

    I’m not sure which of those two are actually more tzanua. But in general, actions speak louder than words. [Not that it excuses the woman dressed improperly]

    (And we can’t forget the orthodox women who wear burqas that fly in the face of what our rabbonim teach us. More covered is not always more halachically acceptable)

    #730963

    QuestionForYou
    Participant

    Thank you to all those who posted in support of Tznius being Halacha D’Oraisa. It is a Mitzvah, which must be kept. IY”H there should be more education in this area, so that women and girls will know what they are supposed to do and what they are not supposed to do.

    As I quoted before from “Daughters of Dignity (subtitiled: Hashkafa and Halachic Guidelines in the Noble Mitzvah of Tznius), Third Edition,” authored by Mrs. Chana Toby Friedman (who is part of the “Kol Kevudah Movement,” an organization which promotes modesty awareness and education), and which has the Haskama of such Rabbonim as Rav Pinchas Scheinberg, Shlita; Rav Ovadia Yosef, Shlita; and the Belzer Rebbe, Shlita:

    From the Introduction:

    “Dear Jewish Daughters:

    We are living in times of increased immodesty. Impure influences are threatening the sanctity of Jewish women and girls and of our entire people. The Jewish principle of modesty is under attack and in danger. . . When modesty is weakened, the Holy Shechinah disappears from Israel, Heaven forbid, as it is written:

    ‘ V’Lo Yay-roeh B’cha Ervas Davar V’Shav May-acharehcha. ‘

    ‘ In the event that Hashem will see immodesty amongst you, He will turn away from you. ‘

    It is of supreme importance for us to be particularly meticulous regarding the observance of this Mitzvah. One must vigorously pay attention to its details, lest one violate the fundamental laws for which a woman – in but a brief moment – may cause others to commit thousands of sins, thereby destroying many generations.”

    The Mitzvah of Tznius encompasses both the external (dressing properly and covering what should be covered) and the internal (modest speech and modest behavior).

    #730964

    yepyep
    Member

    I believe that many girls become turned off – there are some teachers/mechanchos who don’t know how to give over the beauty of tzniyus – all they do is yell about this and that – and they accomplish NOTHING. I remember when I was in high school – if you got through all 4 years of h.s. without being blasted by the ‘tzniyus teacher’, you were quite lucky. People don’t listen to yelling – maybe they will temporarily (just so that they don’t get on anyone’s bad side), but once they finish being scrutinized by authority (post h.s.), they might just let loose. I’m not excusing this behavior. However, I feel that those who are in the position of authority have to give over tzniyus in such a way where girls should WANT to keep it properly – not because they’re being FORCED.

    #730965

    apushatayid
    Participant

    Its all in how it is taught and how those who do the teaching (parents and mechanchim) practice what they teach.

    #730966

    Bed-Stuy
    Participant

    I find it ironic even though there hasn’t been an active tznius thread in 6 months, as soon as the subject of ensuring tznius comes up we have the old choir singing not again.

    #730967

    dunno
    Member

    Thanks kapusta.

    yepyep

    Exactly.

    #730968

    apushatayid
    Participant

    Not again, because nothing new will be added to the discussion, except perhaps for the screen names of those espousing opinions.

    #730971

    Bed-Stuy
    Participant

    You don’t seem to complain every time its repeated over again that one should be nice or not steal, both of which tznius is as important.

    #730972

    apushatayid
    Participant

    Bed-Stuy. Your sentence needs a revision. I am guessing you are saying that you dont see me complain when someone writes tznius is more than how you dress. That is true. You dont see me “complain” either way though . I was just commenting on your irony. I have not commented on anything else in this thread except for a remark about those who teach tznius.

    Personally, I am not a big believer in commenting on anyone else’s mode of dress. Male or female. My job is to make sure my family is dressed in accordance with the demands of tznius. If I was a Rav, I would extend it to the members of my kehilla. It is not my place to comment on the dress of other women, or men. If I felt I could make a difference, I would ask my Rav for advice how to go about reaching out to someone else. The mock “shock” and “horror” I read on this and other blogs, is more humorous than anything else.

    #730973

    QuestionForYou
    Participant

    “Mock” shock and horror?

    Why does it look like the concern expressed here is not genuine?

    It’s like the parable of someone who drills a hole under his own seat in a boat;

    and when the other passengers see what he’s doing and ask him to stop,

    he replies, “Mind your own business! I’m drilling only under my seat, not yours.”

    The others answer, “Even if you drill a hole only under your seat; the entire boat will sink, along with the rest of us!”

    Kol Yisroel Arayvim Zeh L’Zeh.

    If a woman dresses, speaks, or acts in a way that is not Tznius-dik; she harms not only herself, but others, too.

    #730974

    rabbiofberlin
    Participant

    I find the criticism that many posters have done of previous generations truly outrageous. I imagine that most of these posters are young. You all live today in a time when everything is given to you.You have yeshivas, kollels, kosher foods, no problem with money. You don’t have an iota of understanding of previous generations. They are all heroes in my eyes because they lived,worked and toiled in difficult times and kept their emunah and fidelity to “yiddishkeit”. They were not perfect but they were true heroes. Remember the gemoro- ‘im horishonim kemalochim….”

    EDITED

    #730975

    KACH 613
    Member

    The problem is that everyone out there screams tznis, tznis, tznis!! If only people will work on their midos as much as they worry about border line tznis issues we will be better off. It bothers me A LOT more when someone makes a chilul Hashem then if I G-d forbid see a knee.

    #730976

    dunno
    Member

    For you people out there who go over to girls you find improperly dressed, I have news for you. Most times they realize what they’re doing wrong or don’t think it’s wrong. In either case, they won’t change just because some random person on the street tells them it’s assur. Like apushatayid said, set the standards for your family but don’t impose on others. It’s just not your business.

    #730979

    mdd
    Member

    Dunno,the Torah says it is everybody’s business, the american bill of rights might disagree.

    #730980

    Yerushalmi was awaiting a bus at a stop. Next to him is a scarcely clad girl. Yerushalmi walks across the street into the fruit store. After a quick purchase returns to his spot and turns to girl.

    Y. “Here is a fruit for you. Enjoy”

    G. “Thank you, just what I needed”

    Y. I knew, thats why I got it for you’

    G. How’d you know

    Y. Simple. Chava also didnt feel a need to be covered until she ate the fruit

    #730982

    bein_hasdorim
    Participant

    It is not the material of the article of clothing that makes it UnTznius, (e.g Denim) rather the lack of length, (not covering what needs to be covered) tightness,(revealing) or translucent (seethru) nature of the material or a slit running up 2 the sky to make it NOT TZNIUS.

    Nothing wrong with denim skirts as far as tznius, if above

    criteria are met. Just like theres nothing wrong with wearing

    a bend-down hat, just because a satmar chassid wont wear it,

    doesnt make it wrong, same way some yeshivish or heimish wont

    wear denim.

    Chas V’shalom to not wear a denim skirt on grounds of Tznius

    but to wear a tight black top and a matching black short skirt

    is ok???

    Wear all the denim you want as long as its long and not tight no

    slit going up too much. (near the knees).

    #730983

    QuestionForYou
    Participant

    Having Good Middos and acting like a Mentsh is a Mitzvah.

    (Derech Eretz Kadma L’Torah.)

    Keeping Tznius is a Mitzvah.

    Keeping Shabbos is a Mitzvah.

    Keeping Kosher is a Mitzvah.

    No one is disparaging previous generations, because they did not know any better or because they had to deal with issues that we don’t have to deal with today. No one is saying that a person does not need Good Middos and is allowed to C”V commit a Chillul Hashem.

    All that is being said is that for a Jew to keep Yiddishkeit properly, ALL of the Mitzvos must be observed.

    Acting in a Tznius-dik manner while dressing in a non-Tznius-dik manner does not make a girl Tznius-dik. Both types of Tznius must be observed.

    IY”H there should be a way to educate girls and women about Tznius, in a non-confrontational manner that teaches about the rules and rewards of Tznius, and the punishment for the lack of Tznius, C”V.

    #730984

    oomis
    Participant

    No one is disparaging previous generations,”

    Well yeah, they kinda did. And however we view tznius today, the previous generation may have done certain things differently, but IMO it is wrong to say they were not tzniusdig. They were not tzniusdig by the accepted standards of TODAY. Previous generations interpreted tznius by a different yardstick and considered themselves to be frum, modest people. I really do not understand why this is such a hard concept to understand. People also did not eat glatt kosher several decades ago. Meat was either kosher or not kosher. Glatt came in with the influx of various groups. Is it better to eat glatt, from the standpoint of kashrus? Of course. But does that mean our relatives fifty years ago ate treif? Not by the standards that were acceptable to most fru, Yidden then.

    Anyway, it is clear we cannot reach a meeting of minds on this issue. As we live in this day and age, and most of us seem to follow what is presently the accepted standard for tzniusdig clothing, I think it matters little what people did before this. And oh yes, I would wear a jeans skirt. It’s only a type of material, and holds up much better than my other clothing when I am running around doing errands, cleaning house, or just getting on the floor with my grandchildren,etc.

    #730985

    mdd
    Member

    Rabbiofberlin, do you ever get outraged when someone does an aveira? You should.

    #730986

    dunno
    Member

    mdd

    Going over to them is counterproductive.

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