by Jenna Mullins | Wed., May. 14, 2014 10:56 AM
We're going to start this story out by pointing out that this prom was for homeschooled kids, so please get your Mean Girl jokes out now. We'll wait.
OK, here we go!
Clare, a 17-year-old girl from Virginia, claims she got kicked out of her prom for dancing provocatively and for wearing a dress that those in charge of the prom deemed too short. But she insists her dress met the minimum requirement of being fingertip length and she even posted a photo to prove it (shown below) on the blog post she wrote about the ordeal. Clare is blaming what sounds like pretty creepy chaperone dads who were observing the prom. She details what happens for HannahEttinger.com, so head there for the full play-by-play.
To set up the story, Clare attended the Richmond Homeschool Prom with her boyfriend in a dress that she made sure was long enough and that she had saved up for weeks to buy. When she arrived at prom, she was stopped by a woman she calls Mrs. D, who we assume was some kind of home school official? Anyway, Clare was told her dress was too short, but she did the ol' fingertip test, passed and was "begrudgingly" allowed in.
When she got into the dance, Clare writes that she saw many girls in much shorter dresses, but she just laughed it off and went about enjoying prom with her date. However, she did note that she and her friends felt uncomfortable at the sight of a group of fathers watching the dance.
That's when things went down:
"We were also a little grossed out by all the dads on the balcony above the dance floor, ogling and talking amongst themselves. We weren't dancing, but swaying with the music and talking and enjoying ourselves, when Mrs. D again approached me, and gestured me off the dance floor. She took me into a corner in the hall way, with another woman, (who I'm assuming was a parent/chaperone) and told me that some of the dads who were chaperoning had complained that my dancing was too provocative, and that I was going to cause the young men at the prom to think impure thoughts. At this point I said to her that I hadn't been dancing at all! Much less seductively, and that even if I had been being inappropriate, they should issue a warning instead of just kicking me out."
Um, boys in high school are thinking impure thoughts pretty much 24/7, no matter what you're wearing or what you're doing. It's called hormones. Look into it.
After Clare insisted she wasn't dancing provocatively, Mrs. D moved onto another complaint:
"Then she proceeded to reiterate that my dress was too short and that I was going to have to leave. I again showed her and the lady with her that the dress met dress code standards, the only thing the dress code said was it had to be fingertip length, and they never had us sign any sort of agreement to abide by that rule in the first place, and second of all my dress was in compliance with the one rule."
After much back and forth which Clare promised in her blog post was respectful, albeit frustrated, her date and friends jumped in to back up Clare, insisting she was not dancing inappropriately. Apparently, nothing was going to change Mrs. D's mind, because Clare was kicked out, and because she drove with a big group of people, they also left.
Clare writes that the whole situation made her feel "violated, walked over and ostracized."
"My group of five people had to leave the prom because I stuck out, I have long legs and I was wearing a sparkly dress, I didn't look like most of the 13-15 year old girls there, I looked like a woman. And goddamn it, I am so tired of people who abuse their power to make women feel violated and ashamed because she has an ass, or has breasts, or has long legs.
This is a message to the women who understand that sometimes, it doesn't matter how much you pin a dress, you're still going to have cleavage show when you bend over. This is a message to girls built like me, who can't find jeans that fit because your ass is just too damn big! The girls with long legs, who are forced to prove that their dresses fit the dress code, just because they have more leg showing then most girls.
And enough with the slut shaming. Please. Goddamn I'm not responsible for some perverted 45 year old dad lusting after me because I have a sparkly dress on and a big ass for a teenager. And if you think I am, then maybe you're part of the problem."
Clare's story went viral, and people flooded the Richmond Homeschool Prom Facebook page with protesting comments, and eventually the page was shut down.
An update was posted to HannahEttinger.com on Tuesday on behalf of Clare (who is busy studying for finals), telling people that even after the Facebook page was taken down and comments were deleted, no apology has been made to Clare and her friends, and the only person to get a refund for the 25 dollar prom ticker was Clare's boyfriend.
TL;DR: Girl wears dress to prom. Chaperones be like: