Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

Amanda Lamb: Shopping with a crowd

Posted January 31, 2016

There's nothing to remind you how much our world has changed than going shopping for clothes with our children.

I remember when we were growing up and went shopping with our mothers for a dress for a special occasion. There were no options other than the local department store. In those stores, there were maybe a handful of dresses that would fit that our mothers deemed appropriate. My mother would bring two choices to the dressing room and tell me to try on each one and then pick one. And the dress must also have a dual purpose of being a "church dress" as well.

Even worse, sometimes my mother would shop without me and simply bring home dresses for me to wear without my approval.

"If you don't like it we can return it," she would say, eyeing me in the red and black velvet and plaid number with a big stiff bow in the back, an enormous smile on her face.

"No, it's great," I responded, feigning enthusiasm, not wanting to hurt her feelings.

These days, when we go shopping with our daughters, we are not alone. Her entire group of friends must weigh in on the purchase by way of a selfie sent through a group chat. This not only makes the process more tedious, but lasts a whole lot longer.

"That one looks great on you," I exclaim honestly from my perch on the edge of a bench across from the dressing room. I am exhausted after a long day of work, and I'm buried under a pile of discarded dresses on my lap.

She tells me to hold on. She takes a photo and sends it to someone. And then she stares at her screen and waits.

"Nope, not going to work," she tells me in no uncertain terms shaking her head vigorously. Apparently, her older sister is part of the process now and has vetoed this particular selection. We leave the store without making a purchase.

So, on the return trip a few days later, I bring the older sister in person to hopefully expedite the process. Thankfully, the three of us were able to agree on one dress even after the group chat also weighed in.

I promise my friends one thing: I will never send you a picture of me trying on a dress. I love you, but I don't need you in the dressing room with me.

And, by the way, I wrote this post on my iPhone while waiting in dressing rooms all afternoon!

Amanda is the mom of two, a reporter for WRAL-TV and the author of several books including some on motherhood. Find her here on Mondays.


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