Remember when you were younger and you saw someone older on TV who displayed so much confidence? They were beautiful, sexy and everything you assumed you’d be once you hit a certain age. The media shows us at a young age that you should be a certain person by a certain age, and if you don’t measure up, you’re as good as dead. I was pretty impressionable as a kid so I assumed I was going to do what everyone else was doing on TV. (Remember when everyone thought Britney Spears’ schoolgirl outfit in the “…Baby One More Time” video was “shocking?” Psh. Riiight.
I’m not sure how it is for men, but for women, it’s one of the most disgusting and disheartening things we will ever have to live up to. But here’s the thing: you don’t have to live up to that. But in a sexed up society, it’s hard to stand your ground when no one will listen to you if you’re not baring all for the world to see. They claim it to be “private,” but is it really? If you’re not naked, you’re invisible. When you have positive messages to share, nobody listens. People are so obsessed with sex and the idea of sex that it’s taking away everything that should be valued in our society.
When it comes to sex, I was never one to broadcast anything. I strongly believe that whatever happens between two consenting people should be kept private. I still hate it whenever people air their dirty laundry, especially on social media. Nowadays, if you’re not taking sexy selfies or over sharing every detail of your sex life, you’re considered a prude. I hate that word. What ever happened to things being sacred? Call me crazy, but I’m not interested in sharing private details with anyone. Some women may say, “but men do it all the time,” and it’s true, they do! But just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. Sometimes, the word “equality” gets to our heads and we try to compete with men, when in reality we are forgetting our common sense. Be the better person and keep it private.
I once had an ex-boyfriend (and a shitty friend) tell me that if I’m not willing to be “slutty” right away, I’m going to be alone forever. Apparently, that’s “how you keep a man” and I use the term “man” very lightly. If that’s what it takes to keep a relationship, I’m fine being by myself. It’s like everywhere I turn, I’m being criticized for having strong morals. I was suffocated for a very long time in a relationship I was holding onto out of fear. I felt shamed for being who I am for so long and the more people I meet, the more I see those horrible years flash in front of my eyes. It’s like everyone is a copy of everyone else with the same freaking pathetic goal in life. It’s a craze that I just can’t understand. When I love someone, I don’t just love them for one thing, but in this society, I am wrong for loving this way. Hasn’t anyone told them that this is not love? This is called using someone.
The older I get, the more alienated I feel. Even picking up a woman’s magazine is disheartening. 10 Ways To Impress Him In Bed. 5 Ways To Win Him Over During Your One Night Stand. 8 Ways To Make Him Drool Over Your Booty. I can’t make this stuff up. Maybe I should be a nun. Women are valued solely on their appearance, and as much as we all preach about feminism, sometimes the word gets taken out of context. They preach and preach, meanwhile they are giving men exactly what they want. They are showing off every inch of their bodies leaving nothing to the imagination. People around the world walk around all day with “private” pictures on their phones. You know what “private” means? Leave it at home, behind closed doors. Not on a device that anyone can snatch from you at any moment. That girl standing next to you in line at Starbucks? Her phone is filled with nude photos. Or what about that celebrity chick that everyone adores who unjustifiably got her photos hacked and claimed that she was in a loving long-distance relationship, and that if he wasn’t looking at her, he’d just look at porn. Yeah, sweetie, he still looks at porn…and you. I can’t tell the difference anymore.
Actress Rashida Jones wrote a lovely op-ed for Glamour magazine last year on this very topic. In the article, Jones expressed that we all need to take a look at what we are accepting as “the norm.” Naturally, she got a lot of flack for the article (because God forbid anyone should start slut-shaming people who actually are making fools of themselves) but I think it was tastefully written and her point continues to be proven. The fact of the matter is, porn is everywhere now. No need to pay extra to watch unrealistic women degrade themselves. Just turn on your TV or check out the newest YouTube videos! I think Rashida said it perfectly here: “There is a difference, a key one, between “shaming” and “holding someone accountable.” You can read her post HERE.
Maybe I’m just not made for this world or maybe I’m trapped in a morally bankrupt society. Either way, I’m sick of having to defend myself. I’m sick of having to wonder about a guy’s ulterior motives. I’m sick of finding out a guy’s true colors once he finds out about my values. I’m sick of everyone hanging on to an unrealistic ideal that everyone takes nude photos and everyone exploits themselves. In doing so, it’s like putting a piece of yourself out there that you can’t take back, “privately” or not. It’s still out there. Someone who you’re dying to trust is looking at it. Most of the time, people you shouldn’t trust are looking at it, among other things. I’m sick of feeling like a nobody in a world where everyone is naked. I may not have a body like a model, but even if I did, I wouldn’t be showing it off for the world to see – and I hope that someday, somewhere out there in this fucked up world, there’s a man out there who respects these qualities. Not just because he was told to, but because he believes it with everything in him. I have so much to say and so much I want to do, but I’ll be damned if I show anything the world isn’t allowed to see by my standards in order to achieve those things.
I’m all for personal choice, but think twice before you start a trend that could potentially ruin not only your reputation, but a long line of bad decisions from others who may not have a mind of their own. All for what? Sex? Get real. Newsflash: we all have the same thing underneath our clothes. Did you JUST discover you had boobs so you decided to show everyone? This is trivial. Make it stop already!
Let’s get our dignity back, shall we?
“I know some people will wonder what gives me the authority to tell people to do anything. The answer is: nothing at all. But I feel this way—and I’m guessing other women might too.” – Rashida Jones