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Heaven knows it’s hard enough interpreting the signals given off by teens and college-age singles. And you don’t want your underwear adding to the confusion.

That’s the idea behind the “conversation underwear” recently introduced by What Would Your Mother Do?

The California label with the catchy name offers a range of playful boyshorts and T-shirts imprinted with mood-killing messages like “Zip It!”, “Not Tonight”, “Dream On” and “Ask First”.

Since its launch in February, WWYMD has generated a lot of media buzz, including a backlash from smart alecks who called the collection “anti-sex underwear”, “abstinence undies” and “chastity chic”. The company has also been linked to groups like True Love Waits and Silver Ring Thing, which encourage teens to pledge abstinence until they are married.

But all the sniggering might be a bit unfair to WWYMD founder Maria Watts, a mother of two teens who said she created the line to give mothers and daughters an opportunity to discuss the difficult issue of teen sex, and to reinforce family values.

WWYMD undies are meant to be humorous conversation starters that prevent teens from making hasty, ill-considered choices, the company says: “The simple question ‘what would your mother do?‘ is a cheeky mantra to inspire healthy and intelligent decisions to benefit all girls everywhere.”

Given the bombardment of messages promoting sex that teens are exposed to every day — not to mention the wide variety of undies imprinted with lewd slogans — it’s hard to fault WWYMD for promoting dialogue around the subject of teen sex.

If there’s a flaw in the concept, it might be this: if your mother isn’t exactly a paragon of moral rectitude, the message kind of loses its punch.

Then again, if your boyfriend needs an underwear slogan to remind him to slow down and “ask first”, you’re probably dating the wrong guy to begin with.

Below are some examples of WWYMD’s line of tops and boyshorts. And boys, the company is coming out with a line of men’s items soon, so be prepared. Can’t wait to see those slogans!

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