“If you haven’t, you’re a prude. If you have, you’re a slut. It’s a trap.”
The Breakfast Club came out in 1985 and surprise, what Allison Reynolds said then is still alive and well 30 years later.
Slut-shaming or prude-shaming is both a phenomenon that polices how women choose or don’t choose, to express themselves sexually. And they are both problematic as they are both seen negatively. On one end, there is slut-shaming – shamed for having too much sex and on another, there is prude-shaming – shamed for not having enough or any. I mean, is there a way to come out unscathed? This is the case of damned if you do, and damned if you don’t, am I right?
The sexual standard between men and women exists in this phenomenon too. Men who sleep around are admired for their ‘game’ and are considered studs or players. But when a woman does the same? She is deemed as a slut – looked down upon by both men and women.
Honestly, I struggle to understand how a woman’s sexual choices can become the topic of conversation for others. How and where you prefer to get pleasure is nobody’s business but your own.
Where is the line between being a slut and a prude anyway? Who determines how many sexual partners a woman can have before she is labeled a slut? Is there a similar term used for men based on how many partners they have chosen to be intimate with?
Additionally, it is alarming that these terms are said to women at a very young age. In a study done by Lippman and Campbell (2014) on adolescent sexting, it was found that labels such as slut and prude, were commonly used to judge girls on whether they sext or not. Although the girls in the study were no more likely than boys to sext, it was revealed that they were more likely to experience pressure to sext, particularly from boys.
In the book ‘I Am Not a Slut: Slut-Shaming in the Age of the Internet’ by Leora Tanenbaum, it was mentioned that slut-shaming does not motivate other girls to remain chaste. In fact, an overwhelming majority of the girls and women who were labeled sluts, become more, not less, sexually active as a direct result of being labeled as one.
So why do we do this? Why slut and prude shame? Sexual decision making is the choice of the individual. I vote we cancel shaming anyone for the amount of sex they have. If you can fuck anyone, you can also not fuck anyone.
Because at the end of the day, YOUR VAGINA, YOUR RULES.
- Here’s an article that shares my sentiments: https://www.elitedaily.com/life/not-fck-whoever-you-want/1236765
- Here’s a poem by R. H. Sin that explains slut/prude shaming:
- Here’s the scene to show what led up to Allison Reynolds saying those three lines:
Lippman, J., & Campbell, S. (2014). Damned If You Do, Damned If You Don’t…If You’re a Girl: Relational and Normative Contexts of Adolescent Sexting in the United States. Journal Of Children And Media, 8(4), 371-386. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17482798.2014.923009
Sin, R. Planting gardens in graves.
Tanenbaum, L. (2015). I Am Not a Slut: Slut-Shaming in the Age of the Internet. Harper Collins.