Mom Faces Charges After ‘Posing’ Topless In Hot Tub With Daughter, 14, Confirming Snapchat Is The Worst

Mom and daughter posed topless in hot tub

Photo: Shutterstock

A Missouri woman is facing misdemeanor child endangerment charges after an image of her and her 14-year-old daughter topless in a hot tub was spread over multiple high schools. Take a wild guess as to how! That’s right: Snapchat.

The image was taken by the woman’s 13-year-old daughter who subsequently posted it to the infamous app that allows users to upload images that will be automatically deleted seconds later. But rather than go away, it wound up being circulated around two high schools. The mother claims she “wasn’t posing,” and that she “was getting out of the tub,” but the county prosecutor wasn’t too impressed with her explanation.

According to St. Charles County Prosecutor Tim Lohmar, the mother told authorities she had no idea the image would be circulated, but it was viewed by students at two high schools through Snapchat…The woman’s son attends one of the schools and was ridiculed by his classmates because of the photo, authorities said.

Lohmar said it was clear that the woman and her daughter had knowingly posed for the photo. Both of them were covering their nipples, but their breasts were exposed, he said.

Lohmar claims the image has “sexual overtones,” which confuses me because it sounds like he’s either insinuating there was a much more sinister, pornographic intent here or that being topless is inherently sexual…which it’s not.

In an odd twist, the teen in the photo reportedly had been sent to court-mandated counseling previously for sending nude images of herself to peers. So was this a case of a mother in the wrong place at the wrong time, or was she aware of the implications the photo could have? Honestly, I’m not comfortable making that judgment because I’m (A) not a lawyer (B) not involved in the case and (C) have no clue, seriously. But I do think we can all safely agree that 13-year-olds should not take photos of their moms and sisters naked, that no pictures of 14-year-olds naked should be taken no matter what, and that Snapchat pretty much sucks.

As if you and everyone else over the age of 16* didn’t already know, posting nude photos on the Internet ensures that they will always be around. Forever. And ever. Yes, even if you use Snapchat! Oh, you can tell if they screenshot it? Yeah, it doesn’t matter, the only thing that that means is when you’re notified of their screenshotting betrayal, you’ll wind up with an anxiety attack for the next several weeks.

*No shade to anybody who is/was smart enough before age 16 to know nude pictures stay on the Internet forever and ever.

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    • Hayley Hoover

      Yeah, this is pretty much an all-around messed up situation.

    • Lindsey Conklin

      oh, snap chat.

    • DatNanny

      I don’t give a fuck if a mom and her daughters were topless in a hot tub together. Boobs aren’t scary, and if there a family comfortable with exposed breasts, and this were 20 years ago, I wouldn’t bat an eye at them happening to take a polaroid at the time. But we live with the goddamn internet, and I can’t imagine why she wouldn’t see the consequences of letting her daughter take a picture with her phone.

      And if sending nude photos has been a problem in this girl’s life – why is she even allowed a smartphone? It baffles me. Time and again these sorts of situations come out – a teen sending out pictures, or using social networks to bully – and the parent is aware of the problem but do nothing to restrict their access. It’s a decision that should come as a no-brainer. Smartphones, internet, these are a privilege. If you’re worried about emergencies, get them one of those scaled down phones that can only make calls. Make them do all their homework on a computer in a shared space. When I see stories like this, I feel like parents are afraid to parent.

      • Cori

        The daughter who took & posted the photo was not the one in trouble for posting pictures of herself. That daughter was in the picture, but not responsible for it.

      • Nivea

        I disagree. She was 14, old enough to be responsible for her own nudity in a picture she knew was being taken, even if her mom was setting a spectacularly bad example. But ultimately I totally agree with DatNanny’s point (not everything they said however) about smartphones and the internet.

      • Jennifer Holland

        We are such a perverse culture – we cry sexual overtone, pornography and child endangerment when a 14 yr old is exposed to her mother’s breasts but those same breasts exposed while breastfeeding are to be accepted as a normal and natural occurence and non-sexual. We are so pathetic – no wonder we find ourselves the butt of so many jokes from around the world – we deserve the ridicule !

    • Janok Place

      Breasts are not sexual, everyone just needs to just stop. There is a fraction of society that finds them sexual, there are also foot/nose/ear fetishes. What if it was a topless father and his topless 14 year old son? No problem? I’m from Canada, women here have the exact same rights as men. 14 year old girls and their mothers have the right to walk down the street topless if they so choose, because, gender equality. I don’t do it, I wouldn’t encourage my daughter (or son for that matter) and I don’t feel that it’s “perfectly fine” to circulate topless pictures of ones self at the age of 14. However, I don’t feel that it was sexual, pornographic, abusive or criminal.

      • JadePanda

        Totally hear you, but have to respectfully disagree that a minority of men find breasts sexual. Maxim would go bankrupt if they featured sensual closeups of ears, but they make out pretty well with the cleavage shots. Even if a man prefers other areas (legs, buttocks, etc.), you would be hardpressed to find many guys who aren’t aroused by breasts. It sucks, because I would honestly prefer they didn’t so we could all ditch our bras.

      • Janok Place

        I didn’t say the minority, I said a fraction and I didn’t specify the size of the fraction. 50% is still a fraction. It doesn’t change the fact that women have an equal right to being topless as men do. You’d be hard pressed to find a woman who didn’t find a six pack sexually appealing either. If I posted a picture of my topless 16 year old son in a hot tub, I would not be facing charges.

      • JadePanda

        Thanks for clarifying…I usually read a fraction to imply the minority, so I apologize for any misunderstanding. In this case, the fraction is more like +90/100, whereas ear/nose/feet fetishes would be significantly less, so I was just respectfully disagreeing with the comparison.

        Someone can post a picture of their nose without expecting any controversy. Posting topless photos of yourself (and your mom), especially from a minor…she knew it would illicit a response. Apparently the daughter has a history of posting nude photos of herself for her peers (and whoever else) to see, so she was probably aware of of how provocative this would be.

      • Janok Place

        Sure, but again… if I had a son who liked to post provocative pictures of his six pack (which a large portion of the population do find to be sexually attractive) no one would be calling the cops on me as a mother. It’s a double standard. It’s not that it’s not illicit, it’s that it’s not criminal. And in all fairness, well adjusted, healthy adult men do NOT find 14 year old girls provocative, no matter the lack of proper attire.

      • Janok Place

        And that’s not to say that my topless teenage children wouldn’t be in a world of trouble with their mother for posting said pictures.

      • JadePanda

        As would mine…and that’s the unfortunate part of this story. I don’t think the mom should face charges (or the daughter), but it’s concerning that it seems that this minor’s need for inappropriate attention is not being dealt with by her parents. The counseling for the past events was court-mandated, which implies that someone else had to report the incident and that the parents did not volunteer help for their child.

        And I agree it’s a double standard…personally, I would prefer restricting provocative photos of minors for either gender. Both genders are victimized by unhealthy adults (men and women). There photos can also be used later in life to manipulate the photo’s subject. I speak from personal experience: teenagers do not fully understand the ramifications of their actions. A topless photo to a boyfriend can come back to humiliate and shame the individual.

    • brebay

      I’m wracking my brain to try to think of any image, in any context, I would be less likely to want to take, ever, than a topless picture of my mom…can’t…

    • Charmless

      One of my sister’s very close childhood friends used to go on nudist camping retreats with his family. Mom, dad, and two kids (later two teenagers) were nekkid in the woods. Of course, I doubt photos were permitted. IMO, that’s the only unacceptable part of it. Don’t circulate personal nudes of other people without their knowledge. It’s common interwebs decency.

    • Etr Euj

      One of my sister’s very close childhood friends