What does Decency Mean?

Decency, from the Latin decentia, is the modesty, composure, and honesty of each person. The concept allows reference to dignity in actions and words. For example: “I don’t like shows that transcend the limits of decency”, “Finding a politician with decency is as difficult as finding a needle in a haystack”, “If the coach had decency, he should have already resigned”.

It is possible to define decency as the value that makes a person aware of their own human dignity. Therefore, he prefers to guard his body, thoughts and senses to avoid exposing them to morbidity.

Decency is often associated with nudity or sexual provocation. A common example of an indecent person is one who appears naked or inappropriately dressed in public and maintains a provocative attitude beyond intimacy.

Let’s look at some example sentences: “It’s obvious that the singer’s son doesn’t have any sense of decency”, “Excuse me for saying so, but that bathing suit doesn’t show off your decency”, “Maybe he hasn’t risen in the company because I always preserved my decency and did not visit the house of the boss”.

As it is a somewhat abstract notion, it can be difficult to explain to a child what decency is and educate him about it. Psychologists affirm that decency must be taught at all times from one’s own example, both in conversations and in gestures, attitudes and dress. It is important to work on disseminating this value since children are not aware of the consequences of indecent behavior.

In part, the difficulty of teaching a child the concept of decency in all its extension lies in the poverty that characterizes the education of the smallest; Usually, parenting is made up of a series of lies and the denial of many truths, to avoid supposed psychological damage caused by exposure to ideas that are impossible to process at an early age. According to these principles, talking about nudity and sexual provocation is not a viable option before adolescence.

However, one of the most serious consequences of hiding issues related to sex from the little ones is the lack of resources to defend themselves from potential abuse on a mental and physical level. It has been proven on numerous occasions that children with knowledge of human perversion and of the limits that they should establish in their environment with respect to the relationship they maintain with their body, have many possibilities of saving themselves from rape and psychological abuse in time.

Therefore, there is no doubt about the importance of instilling during childhood the concepts that will be essential for the development of a healthy life in adulthood. And decency, as stated in previous paragraphs, is not only related to the sexual level, but also refers to the set of actions and ideas that define the quality of a person, their inclinations in matters such as justice, compassion and respect for the freedom of others.

Part of the complexity of this concept lies in the context and circumstances; For example, the action of stealing is not always viewed with the same eyes, since although it is considered indecent who takes someone else’s money out of mere greed, whoever does it to feed his family receives a compassionate judgment. Not everyone shares this view, and there are limits to the double interpretation: killing in self-defense is acceptable, but sexually abusing someone or torturing them for months in a dark room is not.