Posted on Apr 18, 2019
SPC Healthcare Specialist (Combat Medic)
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I am a female in the army current on rotation over seas. I was just told by my team leader that my platoon Sgt (female) told him that I need to start wearing a bra while off duty. in the clothes that I wear, you can't see my nipple or even the color of my nipple nor do I wear revealing or low cut shirts. At the most, you can just see that I am simply not wearing one. Nowhere in any reg does it say it’s required not even in uniform. Can she tell me to do so?
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1SG Senior Drill Sergeant
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SPC (Join to see), it's completely subjective and interpretive really. AR 670-1, paragraph 3-9 outlines the rules for wearing civilian clothing. Whether we like it or not, the Army does regulate what we can wear off duty outside of our home. However, it uses statements such as "subject to local regulations" and "will present a professional image". Those are interpretive statements and are difficult to disagree with. We, as RP members, don't know the local policies for your duty station. Your chain of command does.

RP isn't the place to get an answer on this topic. You'll just get opinions that are irrelevant to your chain of command. You really only have two options:

1. Comply and accept that it's a priority for this particular PSG. Ultimately, this will save you a lot of grief for your remaining time in that unit.

2. Continue to disagree and have a professional discussion with your PSG about your concerns. If you feel that your PSG is being completely unreasonable then you're always able to use the open door policy for your 1SG.

With that said, I highly suggest keeping this issue at the lowest level possible. You must weigh the pro's and con's of this fight. Is it really worth the effort? These are only questions you can answer.

Best of luck.
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SSG Eric Blue
SSG Eric Blue
1 mo
Best answer I've seen for this type of question, 1SG. I've encountered the issue multiple times before, but this is the first time I've actually seen it here on RP.
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SSG Eric Blue
SSG Eric Blue
1 mo
SGT (Join to see) - I like that one, too.
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SGT Air Defense Radar Repairer
SGT (Join to see)
1 mo
SPC Raven Elloie - They haven't had to buy one either.
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SSgt W. Aaron Gregory
SSgt W. Aaron Gregory
1 mo
In my simple mind, female undergarments are a hands-off topic. Much like my command never told me if I could go commando or not. But there’s other dynamics, such as being in a host country other than your own. Don’t offend the locals. We’re guests, not conquerors. Otherwise, what is this issue really about? Seriously, what is it about? If you hate wearing bras - because many ladies I’ve talked to do - and I can understand why, they sound uncomfortable as h*ll, why would you if it wasn’t necessary? If the OP simply doesn’t like being told what to do, well that’s a problem. What is the real root issue here? I definitely recommend resolving this at the lowest possible level.
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LtCol Robert Quinter
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The only conceivable reason I could come up with is the fact that you are US military in a foreign country and your platoon sgt feels your lack of a bra could be offensive to the locals. In any event, you deserve more information from your platoon sergeant directly without putting your team leader in what could be an awkward situation.
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PFC Jade Stone
PFC Jade Stone
6 mo
1stSgt Edward Jackson I so agree. We Americans have to learn to pick and choose our battles with a bit of common sense. We should not have to have a discussion about wear or not to wear a Bra. Still, I have to suspect dress code is still taught in boot camp!
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PFC Jade Stone
PFC Jade Stone
6 mo
A1C Joseph Fox Moral? Low Moral if I have to wear a Bra? Forgive my ignorance, but I think there need to be discussion on professionalism, which is very much lacking in our military today.

I own a company; I have a dress code and conduct code. If you start trouble in the community or even beat up your spouse, your fired and if you come to my company without a bra, you get sent home to put one off on with a verbal warning. My employees are to sell the product, not themselves.

I learned professionalism in the Army, that has served me well in my civilian life, as a nurse and owner of my own company. Therefore, don't get why we have to have this discussion on to wear or not wear a Bra!
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LTJG Kevin Matthews
LTJG Kevin Matthews
3 mo
I've been out for some time, but I recall situations like this were normally handled directly by the female nearest the individual in the chain of command, which in this case would be the plt sgt. It sounds to me like this PSG (female) just might be testing to see if the team leader (male) is comfortable addressing such an issue with a female subordinate.
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SrA John Monette
SrA John Monette
1 mo
A1C Joseph Fox - what does the orange man's lack of morals have to do with this question?
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SFC James J. Palmer IV aka "JP4"
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Edited 3 mo ago
As a former PSG. Straight up. I wouldn’t do it nor would I direct one of my team leaders to give such an awkward directive. Especially if just for the sake of saying that without giving further serious clarification. I am of the opinion that is way inappropriate for me as a male to tell you something like that. Especially given the facts of what you just stated and taking them at face value.

Having said that.......

I would ask my SQD/Team leaders if this is causing a legitimate widespread issue to unit cohesion and morale. If the answer is yes, then that is a separate matter. If the answer is no, but just a personal gripe that they don't like, my answer to my SQD/Team leaders would be to leave her alone. We shouldn't be making on-the-spot corrections based upon our personal preferences. That isn't how that should work.

Let me say again. I/MY/SQD/TEAM LDRS WILL NOT WALK UP TO A FEMALE SOLDIER AND TELL HER TO PUT A BRA on because somehow I got it in my head she may not be wearing one. Good grief. We ain't even about to do something like that. No means no. There is a better way to handle that explosive of an issue rather than using more explosives to clear out a gasoline pool.

JP
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SSG Harry Outcalt
SSG Harry Outcalt
3 mo
CPT (Join to see) rank does not dictate courage..
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CPT Inactive Reserve
CPT (Join to see)
3 mo
SSG Harry Outcalt - Very true.
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1SG Daniel Bellina
1SG Daniel Bellina
2 mo
Do the right thing. Remember we all wear the same hat
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SFC Ricky Broadnax
SFC Ricky Broadnax
1 mo
Yes, I had incident in which a female MSG told another female soldier SPC she couldn't wear the dress she had on because it showed her shape, but what it really came down to the MSG was jealous of this young soldier's figure (this was off duty in civilian clothes). If a female soldier is wearing something to revealing I would direct another female soldier NCO tell her unless it really came down to it I had to tell her myself; I would have another witness an NCO with me to let her know what she has on isn't appropriate. If no one is offended, somethings are best to be left alone. Sexual harassment is a very serious issue in today's military and society.
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