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Zephyr
03-04-2003, 12:08 PM
What do you all think of this...

My grandmother was a Kappa Alpha Theta and had her sorority pin set as a necklace and gave it to my one aunt, who is a Sigma Kappa but wears the necklace. I know it was her mother's--but that's a SISTERHOOD pin!

Beyond the pins...my younger sister, who is not greek, wears some of my lettered t-shirts to work out and it drives me UP THE WALL.

I know people who collect sorority/fraternity badges as charms.

I know it might seem like splitting hairs but I just don't think anyone should wear anyone elses letters! I went through a NM Program to learn the meaning and values behind my letters and what they represent is important to me! I'd never wear any letters but my own! (unless I was lavaliered or something; but that is different...)

What do you all think? Do any of you have specific protocols in your organizations?

Kristen

JerzeeBoy26
03-04-2003, 12:14 PM
In our chapter of Beta, you are only allowed to wear the letters once you have been formally inducted as a pledge (at some other chapters you cannot wear the Beta letters till you are a brother)

that said, there are lots of girls on campus walking around in our letters who we give shirts too

FuzzieAlum
03-04-2003, 12:20 PM
Well, collectors, in their defense, don't wear the items, usually. That's a separate issue that's been discussed often on Greekchat.

In general, only pledged members of AXD should be wearing our letters, but there are exceptions. Event shirts could be worn by anyone who participated. Babies can wear "An AXD loves me" bib. And of course many fraternity men give their letters to their girlfriends.

If you don't like your sister wearing your letters (I sure wouldn't let mine!) then stop her! I mean, they are your clothes. It's your responsibility to keep them out of non-member hands.

And finally, a badge is very different from any other sorority gear, and your grandmother and aunt as Greeks should both know better, no matter what setting they put it in.

Zephyr
03-04-2003, 12:27 PM
LOL! I do my best to keep my letters of my sister... :)

ZTAngel
03-04-2003, 12:37 PM
When my sis was stilll in high school, I never let her wear my lettered shirts or my jersey (no way!!!!). I did let her wear my homecoming and greek week shirts. At her HS, it was the cool thing to wear your older sister's sorority t-shirts.
My boyfriend has some of our rush shirts or date function shirts. I would never let him wear letter shirts, though.

POTGIRL
03-04-2003, 01:03 PM
:confused: Im really not sure about that. I am in Rho Theta Tau, a Local sorority at Kean University, and i wouldn't let anyone else wear my letters. Although, my boyfriend is in ZBT and he asked me to wear his letters . i told him no, but he wants to get me ZBT sweetheart shirts. I asked him if that was ok? and he said that it is alright if you are a girl and you wear your boyfriends letters. I don't know, i would like to represent his fraternity and wear his letters, but i didn't do anything to earn them, ya know what i mean? And i don't know how my sisters would feel if i were wearing anyone elses letters but my own! i think its really up to the organization and the person. I really wouldn't have a problem with wearing something that said "ZBT sweetheart" or "i date a ZBT bro" shirt because i'd be representing, and it wouldn't be a "real" letter shirt.

POTGIRL

FuzzieAlum
03-04-2003, 01:16 PM
On the other hand, since you are a girl, no one could possible mistake you for a brother of ZBT. No one would expect you to have "earned" them. If his fraternity's rules say it's OK (and nationall ZBT is fine with it), it's OK.

adduncan
03-04-2003, 02:11 PM
From what I have learned so far, the only place where it is acceptable for anyone to wear another's letters is spouses/engaged couples. I wear my husband's letters, and, on formal occasions, his badge--and as his wife, I am the only one who can.

If I am initiated, he would most likely wear a lavalier from my GLO w/ his alumni recognition pin. I then would wear his lavalier w/ my own badge.

The way I understand it is: wearing anothers' badge, letters, etc, is the equivalent of a wedding ring--with more details about the affiliations and principles of your spouse.

Conversely, there is no way in hell you will catch me wearing my SILs badges. I would catch an earful if I even suggested the idea!

Adrienne (PNAM-2003)
:)

wptw
03-04-2003, 02:44 PM
This obviously varies from GLO to GLO, not just in written policy, but in chapter level usage as well.

Generally speaking though, Adrienne, fraternities tend to be a bit more lenient about this - the acceptable female wearers are not just fiancees and wives, but usually also include mothers, daughters, sisters and housemothers.

Also, Zephyr: I hear what you're saying, but [policy or no] personally I would have a hard time judging what a mother chooses to give to her daughter, or what of a deceased mother's posessions a daughter chooses to wear.

wptw

Peaches-n-Cream
03-04-2003, 02:47 PM
One day my mother needed to borrow a t-shirt to wear to the gym. She went into my bedroom dresser and borrowed a purple t-shirt which had letters on the back. She didn't see the letters so when someone walked up to her in the gym and said, "Oh my God, you're in D Phi E! I'm in D Phi E!" My mother had no idea what this woman was talking about until she took off the shirt and saw the letters on the back. She told me the story, and I thought that it was funny, but she felt bad because she looked at that very young woman like she was nuts. :p

trisigmaAtl
03-04-2003, 02:54 PM
my boyfriend is in a fraternity (which I am a sweetheart of) and I (as well as other sweethearts) are allowed to wear shirts with letters that have been screen printed on (i.e. bid day shirts, formal shirts, greek week etc.) however, only initiated members can wear shirts or hats with letters that are sewn on or embroidered into the material. and they are serious about it!!!
they also don't like it if you are wearing a shirt from an event you weren't invited to. Like some non-member friends of the guys tried to wear bid day t-shirts this year and the guys got pissed! even though i had one on, it was because i was invited to the days events (bbq and lawn party) and those guys weren't. it was also the already mentioned issue that nobody thinks I am ever trying to be a brother, but those non member guys could be mistaken for members.

about the daughter wearing the mother's pin. as a greek she probably understands the significance of her mother's pin, she might wear it because she knows it was something precious to her and she wants to remember her by it. she probably doesn't want to blaspheme the glo's or the importance of the pins. but i don't know... it's definatly a touchy subject.

valpogal99
03-04-2003, 03:08 PM
As far as wearing others letters, we could wear shirts from other groups if they were event shirts (i.e., Derby Days). However, our letters can only be worn by members (new members included) and those that we lavaliere, pin, or marry as long as we are together. On that note though, most men are not fans of wearing sorority letters. Most fraternities I know have similar rules. Once you make a commitment to the person in the form of pinning, etc, the woman can wear his letters. My actual sister was a Tri-Delt and I am an ADPi and we would not dream of wearing each other's letters. However, if she were to pass away and leave me her pin, I MIGHT wear it on special days (like her Birthday) in another form of jewelry (i.e., ring or pendant). I would not wear it as a badge for the sanctity of the organization.

UDZETA
03-04-2003, 03:08 PM
Originally posted by JerzeeBoy26
In our chapter of Beta, you are only allowed to wear the letters once you have been formally inducted as a pledge (at some other chapters you cannot wear the Beta letters till you are a brother)

that said, there are lots of girls on campus walking around in our letters who we give shirts too Girls like me. I have a bunch of Beta shirts from my ex-boyfriend.

GeekyPenguin
03-04-2003, 08:26 PM
Like wptw said, this really varies on the chapter level. I have a friend dating a SigEp and he gave her a set of letters, but my SigEp (different campus) told me that I couldn't wear their letters unless we were pinned/engaged. The standard that my chapter of Gamma Phi has talked about is that we will not give men our letters unless they give us theirs - I don't know what would happen if a sister wanted to give an independent letters, I'm sure we'd talk about it.

DeltaBetaBaby
03-04-2003, 09:13 PM
What about pledge moms/dads? On my campus, your pledge mom/dad traditionally gives you something with their letters on it. I have given Phi Mu shorts and hats to several guys (pledge husbands or pledge sons) as gifts. I don't think it is any big deal, because obviously they are not phi mus, and it gets our letters out there.

(edited for typos)

LatinaAlumna
03-04-2003, 09:23 PM
I think I can safely say that LGLO members do not allow anyone else to wear their letters. I know that some of us will not even write another organization's symbols on a flyer or t-shirt (we'll usually just spell their name out, unless they give us permission). Everyone in my family knows that items with my letters are "off-limits." Also, in many of our organizations, one may not wear the letters until she/he is officially a brother or sister. Actually, I don't personally know of any LGLO that allows prospective new members/pledges/etc. to wear letters before crossing over. I could be wrong. :confused:

kateshort
03-04-2003, 10:49 PM
Originally posted by DeltaBetaBaby
What about pledge moms/dads? On my campus, your pledge mom/dad traditionally gives you something with their letters on it. I have given Phi Mu shorts and hats to several guys (pledge husbands or pledge sons) as gifts. I dont' thyink it is any big deal, because obviously they are not phi mus, and it gets our letters out there.

I've never heard of a pledge [guy] before. Is it like a little sis org for frats, or the frat you party with on bid day?

I think they outlawed those kinds of orgs at my campus, but I don't know how much was nationals and how much was locals.

I've seen ABC Dad shirts on people's actual parents, and I've seen guys and girls wearing event shirts (parties, homecoming, formal, etc.), but not people who aren't related to an org or its events in some way.

FWIW, I got my Phi Mu Alpha (Sinfonia) letters when I was lavaliered. We picked them out together, though some couples on my campus would surprise the lavalier-ee with a set of letters and a lavalier all at once. I can't wear "Sinfonia", though, AFAIK.

(Odd note-- I pinned him before he pinned me, but I was in a local. Can girls in NPC sororities lavalier and pin guys?)

CutiePie2000
03-05-2003, 01:38 AM
Originally posted by Zephyr
My grandmother was a Kappa Alpha Theta and had her sorority pin set as a necklace and gave it to my one aunt, who is a Sigma Kappa but wears the necklace. I know it was her mother's--but that's a SISTERHOOD pin!

Your grandmother probably did it, because she felt that the KAT badge was a thing of beauty and wanted her SK daughter to have it, not realizing it or perhaps forgetting that non-members aren't supposed to wear the badge. If she pledged many years ago, she might have forgotten this.

As for the aunt.....yeah, she should know better than to wear it.
My $0.02

XOMichelle
03-05-2003, 04:47 AM
I don't think it matters. I'd be happy that someone else wanted to wear my letters because that meant they were interested in my org! Besides, it's publicity.
It's only wierd if you are in one glo and wear another same-gender glo's shirt (so it's cool if I wear a fraternity shirt, but not if I wear another sorority's letters).
-M

wptw
03-05-2003, 09:44 AM
Originally posted by CutiePie2000
Your grandmother probably did it, because she felt that the KAT badge was a thing of beauty and wanted her SK daughter to have it, not realizing it or perhaps forgetting that non-members aren't supposed to wear the badge. If she pledged many years ago, she might have forgotten this.

As for the aunt.....yeah, she should know better than to wear it.
My $0.02

Give me a break. Maybe her grandmother simply grew up in an age where they weren't so uptight about every little policy and concentrated instead on the more important aspects of GLO membership like familial love and sisterhood.

Or maybe, like MY grandmother, she was just more worried about her husband and sons coming home from war in one piece. Perhaps she was writing letters overseas instead of studying her national bylaws.

Remember too that a lot of these rules and policies weren't in place way back when. The bureaucracy has crept in slowly over the years.

As I said before, I would be hesitant to second-guess the choices of an old woman who was probably wiser than I.

wptw

pialpha92
03-05-2003, 11:32 AM
Only our new members and initiated members are supposed to wear our letters. There is the usual DAD, MOM, Legacy stuff of course.

Instead, we have a special distinction for spouses, etc - they are POA's. There is even an official T-shirt on our HQ's website for them. I think it originally grew out of some very active alumnae whose spouses were very involved as a way to recognize their contributions. I don't think it is very well known though, I don't see it used often.

macmd
03-05-2003, 12:29 PM
I agree there is nothing wrong with wearing other organizations pins.



Originally posted by wptw
Give me a break. Maybe her grandmother simply grew up in an age where they weren't so uptight about every little policy and concentrated instead on the more important aspects of GLO membership like familial love and sisterhood.

Or maybe, like MY grandmother, she was just more worried about her husband and sons coming home from war in one piece. Perhaps she was writing letters overseas instead of studying her national bylaws.

Remember too that a lot of these rules and policies weren't in place way back when. The bureaucracy has crept in slowly over the years.

As I said before, I would be hesitant to second-guess the choices of an old woman who was probably wiser than I.

wptw

Zephyr
03-05-2003, 12:40 PM
LOL!

The old woman.. *MY* grandmother, was 4 years old during the war.

She gave the pin to my Aunt adn said, "Do you want this cussed thing?"

LOL... It's an heirloom yes, but we're a 'fun' kind of family...

sugar and spice
03-05-2003, 12:50 PM
Originally posted by wptw
Give me a break. Maybe her grandmother simply grew up in an age where they weren't so uptight about every little policy and concentrated instead on the more important aspects of GLO membership like familial love and sisterhood.

Or maybe, like MY grandmother, she was just more worried about her husband and sons coming home from war in one piece. Perhaps she was writing letters overseas instead of studying her national bylaws.

Remember too that a lot of these rules and policies weren't in place way back when. The bureaucracy has crept in slowly over the years.

As I said before, I would be hesitant to second-guess the choices of an old woman who was probably wiser than I.

wptw

I agree. Come on, who cares if somebody's wearing her mom's sorority pin? Some of us are way too uptight about the bylaws of our organizations and fail to apply them on a case-by-case basis. There's a huge difference between giving your badge away to some random lady on the street and some mother giving the pin to her daughter because it's a meaningful piece of jewelry that she wants her to have. I honestly don't even think that Theta HQ would care about this particular instance.

If you guys see some kid fall through the ice, you pull him out and he's got hypothermia and the only thing you have to wrap around him is your sorority letter sweatshirt, are you going to say, "Oops, I can't let non-initiated members wear my letters, I guess you'll have to freeze"? Of course not.

Personally I feel that:

- event shirts are okay for anybody to wear
- letters are fine for your girlfriend/boyfriend to wear if you're serious (pinned/lavaliered or more, or the equivalent thereof if one of you is not Greek)
- articles of clothing with the words spelled out or the nickname instead of the greek symbols should be okay for anybody to wear
- articles of clothing that make it pretty clear that you're not in the group ("ABC Mom" or things like that -- my friend who's a Delta Upsilon gave me an "I [heart] DU shirt" and I don't think anybody's going to mistake me for a DU) are fine in all cases
- if there's any significant meaning behind it -- such as you like to wear your deceased grandma's ABC pin on a necklace occasionally because it reminds you of stories about her college days that she used to tell you when she was little -- as long as they don't wear it as a pin itself, I see no problem with this

I don't think we have to be so uptight about every little policy, and I bet all of our nationals would agree that there are always exceptions to the bylaws.

shadowstar
03-05-2003, 02:31 PM
i think a lot depends on the campus and the chapters. here, it's a big deal for a guy to give a girl his letters. i know a couple guys in Phi Tau who got in big trouble because they let their girlriends sleep in bid day shirts before they'd been lavaliered. but, Sigma Nu guys can give letters to as many girls as they want. my boyfriend used to wear his ex's ZTA shirt and no one in her house ever said anything of it. i have a friend who is a DZ at Ohio State and i saw her wearing a frat's letters and i was like "oh, are you lavaliered?" and she just laughed and said it was no big deal down there to just wear letters of your friends in a frat. i think letters are special to people and you have to exercise discretion before letting others wear them, and i think it would just be plain weird to have a girl in ABC wear letters of XYZ or whatever, but i think it depends more on the campus or chapter's interpretation of wearing others letters/badges/whatever.

aephi alum
03-09-2003, 08:04 PM
AEPhi's rule is that nobody except initiated sisters may wear the Greek letters. That goes for shirts, hats, lavaliers, keychains, everything. New members and non-members can wear things where at least the letter Phi is spelled out, e.g. "AEPhi" or "Alpha Epsilon Phi". A badge cannot be given to, or worn by, a family member unless she is also an AEPhi.

I don't have a problem with the idea of wearing other orgs' letters as long as it's clear that you're not representing yourself as a member of that org. Things like event shirts, "XYZ Mom", "ABC Legacy" etc are ok in my book. Block letters are not, if you could reasonably be taken for a member of the org (e.g. a girl wearing her older sister's sorority letters would be bad; a girl wearing her S.O.'s fraternity letters would be ok).

valpogal99
03-09-2003, 08:29 PM
Originally posted by kateshort
Odd note-- I pinned him before he pinned me, but I was in a local. Can girls in NPC sororities lavalier and pin guys?

Kate, I think most sororities let you lavalier/pin your boyfriend. I know we did. If they are in a fraternity and lavalier/pin you, I am pretty sure that it is automatic that you also lavalier/pin them by accepting their offer. Is this true with other GLOs?

Betarulz!
03-09-2003, 10:18 PM
This is an issue that I'm really divided on.

I think I'd be upset if I ran into someone who was wearing a Beta shirt that was obviously something other than an event shirt ( so no pride week shirts, no brotherhood shirts, no "lettered" shirts). But that would come more from the aspect of me feeling like they were lying to me.

On the other hand, I know that the shirt wouldn't really mean anything to them, like it does for me. So on that note I dont' really mind. As for the arguement of earning letters...I tend to think that pledging should not be a period of showing worthiness, if you recruit well you should have worthy members. Therefore pledging should be the pledge showing their desire to become a member, and to learn about the organization of which they are going to be a part of so that they can be good members once they initiate.

As for members of the opposite sex wearing my letters...no big deal here. I've given party shirts to girls before, and will do so in the future. I've also given my little brother Beta party shirts and I hope he enjoys wearing them, while also teaching others about Greek life (I gave him a big lecture about the fraternity/frat thing).

In the end I think every thing comes down to your perspective. Is anything absolutely horrible likely to happen by someone else wearing your letters? Granted anything is possible, and you'd prefer not to have someone doing something bad be identified as part of your GLO, but overall is there likely to be a lot of harm done?

Further, is you accosting a person wearing your letters going to come off as anything but elitest..."You can't wear those because they belong to me!!!" Not necessarily an attitude I think most greeks are trying to promote.

cash78mere
03-09-2003, 11:42 PM
although i don't think anyone should wear a pin of an org they don't belong to, i know that i hold dear everything my grandma gave me before she died. even though she didn't go to college....if she did and was a member of a glo and gave me her pin as a necklace, i would wear it in memory of her. but only if that's what she wanted. i wouldn't just wear it cause i felt like it. in that case i wouldn't care about bylaws and such.

my grandma meant everything to me and i would have done anything she wanted to help remember her.

in zephyr's case...since her grandma gave it away since she didn't want it, i don't think her aunt should wear it. but it's nothing to get crazy about since it is family.